In 2017, Dessie's life changed when she discovered she had Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension and a Cerebrospinal Fluid Leak. Following her first brain surgery, she had a Ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunt installed and later removed in 2023. Dessie's had 3 brain surgeries and one cranial CSF leak repair.
After enduring this journey, Dessie decided to start a support group to provide support to other warriors since there was not enough information available in her home state for people with these diseases.
Since advocating for others, Dessie goes on speaking tours to raise awareness. She also incorporates life lessons, tips to overcome barriers, and ways to find purpose in pain during her keynote speeches.
Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension (IIH) is a rare brain disease. It exists when too much cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) also known as brain fluid that surrounds your brain and spinal cord which causes increase pressure in the skull. This can happen for no obvious reason. In addition, IIH mimics symptoms of an invisible brain tumor.
Some Symptoms Include:
IIH is known to occur mostly in people that have experienced a head injury or obese women. However, it can happen to anyone at any given time. IIH symptoms are unpredictable and can happen at any given time. It's best to keep a journal so you can learn what foods and activities that trigger IIH.
IIH can be exhausting, tormenting, and painful. Some people have committed suicide or wanted to commit suicide as a result of it. If left untreated, it can cause swelling of the optic nerve, vision loss, seizures, stroke, neurological changes, etc.
"A cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leak is a clear, odorless watery fluid in and around your brain and spinal cord. It controls and coordinates everything you do, including your ability to move, breathe, see, think, and more. " It is also known as a brain leak.
When too much CSF surrounds your brain, it can cause your brain to swell and other major changes to your health.
Some Symptoms include:
CSF Leaks could interfere with your way of life and create much confusion. If left untreated, it can cause stroke, meningitis, etc. It can even lead to death.
If you suspect you have a CSF leak, please schedule an appointment with your ENT specialist or neurologist.