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This Man Spent 43 Years in a Wheelchair Due to Wrong Diagnosis

Sep 26, 2016 08:33 AM EDT
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Stock photo of an old man on a wheel chair.
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A misdiagnosis has lead a Portugese man to believe he couldn't walk, thereby spending his 43 years in a wheelchair.

According to Agence France-Presse, Rufino Borrego was diagnosed with incurable muscular dystrophy by a resident doctor in Lisbon hospital when he was 13 years old. Since then, he became bounded to his wheelchair.

It was not until in 2010 when he learned through a neurologist that he only had myasthenia, a curable disease that can be treated by just an asthma medication.

Borrego is now 61 years old and much of his life has already been wasted. But he insists he does not feel any resentment toward the doctor who did the misdiagnosis.

According to Borrego, he understands as the disease was not quite known during the time they were trying to figure out what his disease was.

IB Times notes that Borrego is now living a normal life and only requires two physiotherapy sessions a year.

"I just want to make use of my life," Borrego told Portuguese newspaper Jornal de Noticias.

Mayo Clinic defines Myasthenia or Myasthenia gravis as a disease characterized by weakness and rapid fatigue of any of the muscles under your voluntary control.

According to Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America, Inc. Myasthenia is probably under diagnosed and the prevalence may be higher that what is on record. It cannot be directly inherited and it is not contagious. Common symptoms of the disease include blurred vision, weakness in arms and legs, muscle fatigue and difficulty in breathing.

There is an association between Myasthenia Gravis and other autoimmune diseases. A study published in National Center for Biotechnology Information have found an association between severe asthma and myasthenia gravis

Meanwhile, because of the technology advancement, the diagnosis of the disease has become more apt and accurate. In addition, advanced therapies have also been made available to manage the disease.

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