As my eyesight became weak, I couldn’t see when doctors used to ask me alphabets on the board. Starting from 0.5, my eyesight weakened to -2. When I was 18 l started to stumble; unable to balance myself and walk straight. Doctors advised my mother to consult with neuro-physicians, so by the end of 2018 we had visited different doctors as my health was seemingly worsening. l started feeling helpless.
When we went to the neurologist he did many tests; MRI, Blood tests, EMG (they put needles in my nerves to see whether they were working). When my mother showed the MRI reports to the doctor, he diagnosed me in seconds with spinocerebellar ataxia.
After my diagnosis, we were unaware of the disease, so we went to therapists. My mother and sister researched it on Google and we came to know about many things. Moreover, in February 2019, we went to London where a gene test was conducted to confirm the disease as SCA7. It was genetically inherited from my father.
Now that we are aware of this particular type, I am trying my best to control the severe symptoms from occurring or at least slowing them down for as long as l can. Physiotherapy has been beneficial and these days we have to a homeopathic treatment.
Living in Pakistan with this disease has been particularly brutal as the awareness of ataxia in this country is close to none. There are no support groups in my knowledge to this day. Observing how Ataxia UK highlights and helps people with ataxia, it gave my sister and l the idea to make a page to raise awareness for ataxia in our country as well! We appreciate the support Ataxia UK has given to our cause.