Huntington’s disease shows up on television every now and then. I’m always so happy when it occurs because it is probably one of the least understood of neurodegenerative diseases; i.e. Alzheimers, Parkinson’s, ALS.
House (2004-2012) Episode: Lucky Thirteen (2008)
The season four finale reveals Thirteen has the dominant mutation for Huntington’s (HD), the disease from which her mother died. Thirteen’s Huntington’s is more aggressive, greatly decreasing her life expectancy and hastening the onset of symptoms. She exhibits self-destructive behavior, using recreational drugs and having repeated one-night stands. House fires her for recklessness but eventually rehires her. She later ceases to behave self-destructively, agreeing to participate in a Huntington’s disease drug trial.
ER (1994-2009) Episode: Insurrection (season 9) (2003)
Features a completely disabled man with Huntington’s disease. During the chaos caused when Dr. John Carter leads a walk-out to protest unsafe working conditions, the man’s mother disconnects his ventilator so that he can die in peace.
Huntington’s disease (HD) is a fatal genetic disorder that causes the progressive breakdown of nerve cells in the brain. It deteriorates a person’s physical and mental abilities during their prime working years and has no cure. HD is known as the quintessential family disease because every child of a parent with HD has a 50/50 chance of carrying the faulty gene. Today, there are approximately 30,000 symptomatic Americans and more than 200,000 at-risk of inheriting the disease.
I’m a HD advocate having lost my 3 sisters-in-law to the disease. John was the lucky sibling and tested negative for the mutated huntingtin gene. I will NOT give up on the fight against this horrific disease and I’m hoping I will see a cure in my lifetime. Read about my experience living with HD in my life. 100% of the profits from Watching Their Dance is being donated to the nonprofit, Huntington’s Disease Society of America (HDSA). My author website is: http://www.theresecrutchermarin.com
We Can Never Lose Hope…………