Sheila Smith of Brookhaven, Miss., can't get over the feeling that myotonic dystrophy is an unwelcome, and unexpected, intruder in her family.
It started in November 1998, when her husband, Michael, then 33, had a car accident. "We feel that he fell asleep at the wheel," Sheila says.
Family histories help solve medical mysteries
The year was 1992, and neurologist John Day had recently moved from the University of California at San Francisco to the University of Minnesota at Minneapolis, where he was to assume the directorship of the MDA clinic. (Day still holds this position, at what is now the Fairview-University Medical Center. He's also an associate professor of neurology at the university.)
Earlier that year, a...