We May Have the Same Diagnosis, but We Are Vastly Different

Megan Hunter avatar

by Megan Hunter |

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When people are diagnosed with a specific condition, they might be able to read about it on the internet or from information provided by a doctor. For the most part, they might know what to expect.

They also might be able to talk to other patients with the same diagnosis to better understand what they are going through, or to gain insight into what might happen as the condition progresses.

Unfortunately, with myasthenia gravis, this isn’t the case, because every patient experiences something different. This is why we often are referred to as snowflakes: We are all unique, and no two patients experience the same issues or concerns.

When I was first diagnosed, I met an older man whose only concern was double vision in one eye. He took one Mestinon (pyridostigmine) tablet daily, which kept everything under control. Since then, I also have met patients who must be ventilated whenever they get any type of cold or flu because their lungs can’t cope with extra stress.

Another friend has drop foot and constantly scuffs the front of her shoes while tripping over anything in her path. Another woman was medically boarded because she couldn’t cope with work due to constant fatigue and countless hospitalizations.

It is difficult to process that while others around you may have the same diagnosis, no one can truly understand the battles you fight every day. With symptoms that include general body weakness, weakness in a specific area, double vision, and difficulty chewing, swallowing, and speaking, this is not a condition for the faint of heart.

Medications, surgery, and other treatments may help, but there are no guarantees. Some friends have an array of medications they must take every day, and many are hospitalized each month. Nevertheless, they still often experience a flare, which means more hospitalizations, doctors’ visits, and tears.

Others go in for treatment every couple of weeks, which helps them to maintain their strength, but is expensive.

Although as snowflakes we often feel alone, it helps to join a support group with others who understand these feelings. It helps to have people who can suggest treatments with which doctors might be unfamiliar. It helps to have people in your corner to lift you up and encourage you. This is the kind of treatment that we all need. This is our commonality.

Always choose to be kind and supportive. We all need it.


Myasthenia Gravis News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.


Susie Phillips avatar

Susie Phillips

I am a Myasthenia Gravis warriors wife. I look for the silver lining every day with my husband. Would love to connect with another female caregiver.

R. Couchman avatar

R. Couchman

And you have had the full works Precious child and still remain so positive.

Ingrid Sweeney avatar

Ingrid Sweeney

When I first met you I knew instinctively that you were someone special. You are an incredible lady.

D. Landoll avatar

D. Landoll

I was diagnosed with generalized MG back in 1984. With no internet, an MDA lady told of a support group. Letters back then and I received one from an elderly lady. Her advice - on a good day, do what you can but remember to rest along the way. On a bad day, go to bed and read. I was furious - I wanted to know how to deal with this. Now I realize her advice was the best I could get.

charles wason avatar

charles wason

Hi my name is Charles and i started to feel some changes to my strength just 2 months ago, being a rather fit person and very active in my property "building conversions etc mostly wood work and i have always been active over the years, and at 70 i am still working in my chosen profession but since this loose of strength which has caused me to have muscle spasm or muscle pain and sensitive nerve endings, example being, when i wake up the muscle's are stiff and sore once i get to my feet i have to stand erect form a minute prior to walking and even then im unsteady on my feet, but even at work i still have difficulty in walking, i do have a bad right knee which was caused by a vehicle accident some 20 years back with little cartilage left "using a brace" and again this has become part of the not some good walking syndrome, i have seen 2 doctors and both say my strength is good placed me on muscle relaxant, vitamin b for the nerves, some form of injection (i believe was a steroid) and sleeping tabs to help me with the involuntary muscle twitches at night, if there is anyone who can direct me in the right direction prior to specialists i would be extremely grateful


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