When I began drooling two years ago I thought it was just because I was getting older but it turns out that I am dying from an autoimmune related disorder. Myasthenia gravis (my-us-THEE-nee-uh GRAY-vis) is an often fatal neuromuscular disease affecting the ability to breathe and swallow. Muscle weakness worsens as the muscle is used. Symptoms usually improve with rest and therefore muscle weakness can come and go. Sufferers often end up on breathing machines and feeding tubes in their final days. There is no cure for MG, but pain management and treatment can help relieve symptoms.
Myasthenia Gravis Affects Facial and Skeletal Muscles
According to the Mayo Clinic, in approximately 15% of cases developing myasthenia gravis, the first symptoms innvolve face and throat muscles which can impair speaking and cause difficulty swallowing.
My first symptoms were a drooping of my mouth and difficulty swallowing. Now that I finally know what is wrong with me I feel much better. MG usually occurs in women under 40 and men over 60. When I was at my neurologists last week there was a young girl with MG who was in a wheelchair and wearing sunglasses because when she took them off her eyeballs were drooping. My whole body feels tired and achy. I did not realize how sick I am. Now that I have rested a few days I feel much better.
My problem is with my Medi-Cal insurance coverage I don’t see my neurologist again until a month from today and I am in severe pain. On my last visit he took me off of the pain killer I was on because he said it causes Alzheimer’s Disease. I sure could use some morphine right about now.
End of Life
I am going to request physician authorized End of Life before I have to go into an iron lung or be intubated. My advance health care directive indicates as much.
I am grateful that I still have a body that can have this new disease. Hopefully I will live to be one hundred but if not I am ready to go now. I have been ready to go for a few years, ever since my last heart attack in 2018 I have been ready to pass on. I don’t mind actually dying, however I grow weary of the extreme physical pain which I usually associate with my experiences getting close to death.