Guillain-Barré Syndrome Symptoms Explained As Jenna Jameson Hospitalized With Condition

Former adult film star Jenna Jameson has been diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome and is receiving treatment in hospital.

Jameson has posted updates to her official Instagram account, where she thanked her followers for their support and said she "will likely remain here until treatment is complete."

Jameson's partner, Lior Bitton, also published an Instagram post to Jameson's account explaining that she had been struggling to walk.

Guillain-Barré syndrome is a rare neurological disorder in which the body's nervous system is mistakenly attacked by the immune system. As a result, the muscles of the body have trouble communicating with the brain through the nervous system.

This can lead to symptoms that vary in severity from brief periods of weakness to paralysis and the inability to breathe independently.

Symptoms usually first appear as weakness or tingling in the legs, which may spread to the upper body and get worse until certain muscles stop working properly, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and weakness may peak within two weeks.

Most people who develop the condition eventually recover even from severe cases, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke—although they may continue to have some degree of weakness afterwards. Recovery can take weeks to years.

Treatments can help lessen the severity of symptoms and shorten recovery time of Guillain-Barré syndrome. One process, called high-dose immunoglobulin therapy, works by giving the patient immunoglobulins—the proteins that the immune system uses to attack organisms—from other people. This can result in a lessening of symptoms, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke states.

Once symptoms begin to improve, patients may be transferred to a rehabilitation setting where they can start to regain strength and prepare to return to their daily life.

The exact cause of Guillain-Barré syndrome is not known, but several things are known to trigger it. Around two thirds of people who develop the condition had diarrhea or a respiratory illness several weeks prior. In particular, as many as 40 percent of U.S. cases of Guillain-Barré syndrome are thought to be trigged by infection with the Campylobacter jejuni bacteria, according to the CDC.

Very rarely, people have developed the condition after receiving certain vaccines. Jameson stressed in an Instagram post that her diagnosis was "NOT a reaction to the jab" since she had not received one.

Guillain-Barré syndrome is rare, affecting around 1 in 100,000 people. Anyone can develop it, though in the U.S. it is more common in men and adults over 50. It is not contagious.

Jenna Jameson
Jenna Jameson at an event in England in September, 2015. Jameson said this week she is receiving treatment for Guillain-Barré syndrome. Karwai Tang/Getty/WireImage