Rep. Jennifer Wexton Announces Rare Neurological Disorder Diagnosis
Representative Jennifer Wexton, Democrat of Virginia, made a heartbreaking announcement on Monday. She revealed that she would not seek re-election next year due to a diagnosis of a rare neurological disorder. Ms. Wexton, who represents a competitive district in the Virginia suburbs west of Washington, D.C., disclosed that she has progressive supranuclear palsy (P.S.P.), which she described as “Parkinson’s on steroids.”
Progressive Supranuclear Palsy: Understanding the Disorder
Progressive supranuclear palsy (P.S.P.) is often misdiagnosed as Parkinson’s disease due to shared symptoms such as difficulty swallowing, speech issues, and balance problems. However, P.S.P. is caused by nerve cell damage in specific areas of the brain responsible for movement and cognition.
The Challenges of P.S.P.
P.S.P. affects various aspects of a person’s life, including walking, balance, and eye movement. Unlike Parkinson’s disease, P.S.P. progresses more rapidly, making it even more challenging for individuals diagnosed with the disorder. Unfortunately, there is currently no treatment available that effectively slows down or stops the progression of P.S.P. or its symptoms.
Ms. Wexton’s Commitment and Future Plans
Despite her diagnosis, Ms. Wexton remains committed to serving her community and fulfilling her duties as a representative. She plans to serve out the remainder of her term, continuing to work towards building a better future for the next generation.