December 24, 2015 |
It is July, and Leanne Purcell is playing summer league basketball with her Notre Dame teammates, working out every day to prepare for her final year of high school. Later that same month, she's the maid of honor at her sister Jaclyn's wedding. Next, it is Aug. 30, and Purcell is in Ocean City, N.J., with her father, Michael. She's reading Their Eyes Were Watching God on the beach. But something isn't right; her stomach is bothering her. The pain isn't normal, and it isn't cramping, either.
July 1, 1986 |
Every time rape suspect Timothy Purcell was brought to court, he vomited, cursed the judge loudly, rolled on the floor and had to be held down, shackled and carried bodily from the courtroom. It happened a dozen times during the past 17 months. Yesterday, for the first time, the 39-year-old Camden resident was able to stand still long enough to tell a judge in Camden what ails him. Speaking so rapidly the court stenographer could hardly keep pace, jerking his head violently, his face often twisted and contorted, Purcell explained what it is like to be one of 100,000 Americans suffering from Tourette's syndrome.
August 21, 1988 |
Jana Flythe doesn't care about the fact that she has vitiligo or that she is among the 1 percent of the country's population that does. The bouncy, playful, 4-year-old Pennsauken resident is more interested in playing with her dolls, swimming and dressing up in pretty clothes than in worrying about the fact that vitiligo is taking the pigmentation out of her skin. The disease, about which little is known, affects about 2.5 million people nationwide, according to Susan Flythe, Jana's mother.
November 15, 2015 |
Tamela Oglesby was gasping for air. "It felt like my last breath," the 35-year-old nursing assistant said, reaching for her throat as she recounted that night one year ago. "I thought I was going to die. My heart was just beating, really, really fast. " Figuring it would be the fastest way there, she took a bus to Pennsylvania Hospital's emergency room, a few blocks from her Northern Liberties apartment. A chest X-ray revealed the diagnosis that changed her life in ways Oglesby could not have expected.
April 15, 1999 |
For years, Rico Brogna said, he didn't want anyone to know he had a rare arthritic condition. As an athlete, you never want to show opponents a sign of weakness, the Phillies' first baseman said. "And I didn't want a lot of sympathy. I just wanted to go out and play like the rest of my teammates. " Someone changed his mind. "Prodding from my mom," he said, grinning before a crowd of reporters yesterday. "Good ol' Mom. She said I might be able to help other people by creating awareness for the millions" who have the disease.
July 29, 1990 |
He places his palms together in prayer-like fashion to say yes, and he crosses his thin little arms in front of his frail body to say no. Five-year-old Alvin Miller can neither walk nor talk. He suffers from glutaric aciduria, a genetic disorder with symptoms similar to cerebral palsy that is extremely common among the Old Order Amish. The smiling youngster has trouble communicating, but he has no difficulty expressing emotion - so evident one afternoon last week as he scooted on his bottom around his southern Lancaster County farmhouse floor.
October 10, 2012 |
As a civilian with the Army Corps of Engineers, Eric Majusiak was ready to respond to emergencies nationwide. In 2011, Majusiak, 28, was deployed to Joplin, Mo., after a killer tornado, and to Upstate New York in the wake of Hurricane Irene. But nothing prepared the burly outdoorsman and civil engineer for what happened in February. He was stricken by hemophagocytic lymphohistiocysis (HLH), a rare autoimmune disorder, and it nearly killed him. The South Harrison Township resident and his wife, Amanda, 25, are high school sweethearts but had been married for only a few months when he returned from a Salem County hunting trip with aching joints.
July 30, 2012
Judy Nicholson Asselin is a middle school teacher and sustainability coordinator at Westtown School My handsome, intelligent, and remarkable son, Nathaniel, took his own life last year at the age of 24. For 13 years before his death, Nathaniel had suffered from body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), a severe brain disorder that affects an astonishing three million to five million Americans, striking most in adolescence. The BDD suicide rate is 45 times the rate found in the general population, according to one study, and twice the rate of those with severe depression or eating disorders.
July 29, 1999 |
An inmate at the Bucks County correctional facility, who had been hospitalized with respiratory problems, was diagnosed with Legionnaires' disease, county commissioners said yesterday. The unnamed inmate was reported recovering and has been returned to the prison. County Health Director Lewis D. Polk said an environmental firm that specializes in microbial identification and remediation would be at the prison today to investigate the source of the disease. Legionnaires' disease - a serious and sometimes fatal bacterial infection that causes pneumonia and flu-like symptoms - is spread through moist air from contaminated water sources, such as air-conditioning systems, showers and whirlpool baths.
July 4, 1991 |
Scientists at the University of Pennsylvania have discovered for the first time the exact cause of a neuromuscular disease. The finding could one day lead to treatments for millions of Americans suffering from degenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Lou Gehrig's diseases and Huntington's chorea, the researchers said. The scientists discovered a genetic defect that causes the body to make proteins poisonous to nerve cells. "This is a very significant development," said Lawrence Stern, a medical consultant for the Muscular Dystrophy Association, which helped fund the research.