SMITHVILLE, Mo. — Imagine feeling perfectly healthy one day, then winding up in the hospital with crippling pain and swelling the next. It’s the dilemma facing a Northland 15-year-old right now. And doctors are baffled as to why it’s happening.
Jordyn Walker enjoyed a family cruise last summer. But when she came back to the states, her medical nightmare began. It started with stomach pain and bloody stools.
“It just went haywire from there. Everything started swelling,” Walker said.
Doctors in North Carolina ran tests, and sent her home, thinking it was a sinus infection. Ultimately, 15-year-old Jordyn lost her sense of taste and smell. That led to multiple specialist visits back home in Kansas City and tons of tests.
“Everything came back normal,” Kendyll Walker, Jordyn’s mom said.
The family was told it was a “one in a million” episode and that it probably would never happen again.
But two weeks before Christmas, 16 months after her initial ordeal, Jordyn’s medical mystery came back with a vengeance.
“My whole face just turned purple and bruised and giant with blood,” Jordyn said.
“It was terrifying to watch it happen all over again and knowing we couldn’t do anything about it,” Kendyll said.
This time, Jordyn went to the ER at the University of Kansas Hospital. She ended up in pediatric intensive care. A 16-day hospitalization with more tests, medications, and two surgeries to reduce eye swelling followed.
But to date, doctors remain stumped.
“There’s no answers. Nothing you can do,” Kendyll said.
While the cause for her strange symptoms remains unsolved. The teen does have one new diagnosis: permanent blindness.
“She won’t get a chance to drive. Or see her sisters get married like she wants so much,” Kendyll said.
The skilled archer and budding journalist knows things won’t ever be quite the same. But Jordyn’s outlook is determined and positive.
“I’m not going to let this stop me,” Jordyn said.
The family’s incredibly grateful for an outpouring of support.
“It makes you feel like you’re not alone,” Kendyll said.
Now they’re hoping someone will find answers to finally help Jordyn heal.
“If anybody has any idea what this could possibly be or what type of testing she could go through to get an answer, so this doesn’t happen again, we would be immensely grateful,” Kendyll said.
Jordyn now has an emergency kit to treat symptoms if they happen again, and her family is planning a trip to the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, hoping to get answers and a treatment plan.