Missouri teen blinded by mystery illness after cruise

After going on a cruise with her family, a Missouri teenager became sick with pain and swelling and even lost her vision -- and doctors aren't sure why.

>> Read more trending news

Jordyn Walker was a healthy 15-year-old when she embarked on a cruise with her family in the summer of 2017. But when she returned home, she fell ill and her medical nightmare began. The sickness started with stomach pain.

"It just went haywire from there. Everything started swelling," Jordyn told WDAF-TV.

The teen saw doctors in North Carolina who ran tests and concluded she probably had a sinus infection. She returned home but then lost her senses of taste and smell. Jordyn visited multiple specialists in Missouri and underwent numerous tests. Every test came back normal, said Jordyn’s mother, Kendyll Walker.

Doctors said the illness was a "one in a million" episode and probably wouldn't happen again.

But Jordyn’s symptoms re-emerged worse than ever in December, 16 months after her initial ordeal. The teen experienced swelling in her face so severe that her optic nerves were damaged. Even though she underwent emergency surgeries to protect her eyes, it wasn't enough.

Doctors told the family that Jordyn would soon be completely blind.

Jordyn ended up spending 16 days in December in the hospital. Even after more tests, doctors don't know what exactly caused the illness that left her blind.

The 15-year-old once enjoyed archery, photography and journalism. She told WDAF-TV she knows her life won't be the same, but she's kept a positive outlook.

"I'm not going to let this stop me," she said.

The family is planning a trip to the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, hoping to get answers and a treatment plan.

About the Author