PORTLAND, Ore. - A Portland woman’s vacation to Mexico was cut short by a mystery illness that caused seizures and memory loss, and doctors still aren’t sure what caused it.
Angela Glass, 40, and a friend visited Sayulita, a resort town on the Pacific coast of Mexico, in November 2018 to celebrate their birthdays, KGW-TV reported. Everything was “incredible,” Glass said, until the fifth day of the vacation.
Glass suddenly became disoriented, then had a seizure, something she had never experienced before, the news station reported.
“Her mouth was foaming. Her face was really contorted, and her eyes were red and rolling back,” said Stacia Secreriat, who accompanied Glass on the vacation.
Glass was hospitalized for three days in Mexico. When she stabilized, she flew back to Oregon and spent an additional five days in a Portland hospital.
Glass thought she may have been drugged or given tainted alcohol, but toxicology tests came back negative. During her hospital stays, Glass was given a CT scan, MRI, spinal fluid test and blood work -- The tests showed nothing abnormal.
She had no preexisting condition.
After the vacation, Glass said she suffered memory problems and was often confused and disoriented.
“I had a really tough time just doing basic things,” said Glass. “Like nothing was computing.”
Glass isn’t the first tourist to visit Mexico and come down with mysterious medical problems. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel conducted an investigation in 2017 and found more than 170 reports of people who experienced similar medical incidents to Glass when vacationing in Mexico. Many who spoke to the Journal-Sentinel attributed their experiences to drinking tainted alcohol.
The U.S. State Department suggests those traveling to Mexico be familiar with Mexico travel warnings, which can be read on the State Department website.