Columbus, OH,
15:00 PM

OhioHealth Associate Works for Awareness of Rare Neurological Disease


For the first 50 years of her life, Patty Lehman did what she wanted, full speed ahead.

"I was a very active person, I volunteered at the dog shelter for about 10 years, and anything that came up on the weekend, or during the week I would do," Patty Lehman said.

But then her life changed forever, with what started as a tumor on her spinal cord, after surgery, she thought her life would improve. It didn’t she was diagnosed with a rare neurological disorder called ataxia.

"It impacted part of my brain, the cerebellum. It was shrinking, and that controls my speech and my vision," Lehman said.

Confused, scared, and now, struggling to get around the way she always had.

"I couldn’t run, couldn't hop, really slow how it progressed. I fell a lot too, until the last few months I fell all the time," Lehman said.

But she wasn’t going to stop her life, she knew should have to find her new normal,

"Was referred to a class called a matter of balance, and they made me take a look at my home and do things to prevent falling," Lehman said. 

She also found a support group through the National Ataxia Foundation, and a walk in Cleveland.

"I have times where I'm fearful, what happens in the future, but there are times where I will do what I need to do to be happy.  Without support I have found through the National Ataxtia Foundation and Facebook friends, I would feel isolated," Lehman said.

Now she works to get more happening the central Ohio, and raise awareness.

If you would like to learn more, you can connect with the national group for Ataxia.