Woman’s misdiagnosis meant living with debilitating illness for nearly three decades

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PLYMOUTH, Minn . – For nearly 30 years, Jean Abbott says she was told she had spastic diplegia, a form of cerebal palsy.

The disease caused her to suffer from muscle spasms, weakness and immobility.

For more than three decades, she tried to manage the symptoms of the disease, but never felt that she would have a normal life.

Even though she visited different doctors for second opinions, they all came back the same.

According to The Mighty, Abbott even went through painful surgeries to help her muscles.

When she ended up overmedicated, Abbott visited a doctor who said he wasn’t sure she had cerebral palsy.

Abbott was diagnosed with Dopa Responsive Dystonia, which is often mistaken for cerebral palsy.

She was told that most of the symptoms she’d struggled with all of her life would disappear with just one pill.

Just two days later, she realized the medication had changed her life.

“I hadn’t stood without help for a decade,” she told The Mighty. “It was at that moment I realized the medication was working and my life had changed.”

On her blog, she said she was able to put clean sheets on the bed, go grocery shopping, make cupcakes, cook dinner and drive her daughters to activities without assistance for the first time.

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