Wuerffel hospitalized to treat nervous system disorder


Danny Wuerffel, right, poses for a photo with Tim Tebow in April. Wuerffel is undergoing treatment for Guillian-Barre syndrome. (File photo)

Published: Wednesday, June 15, 2011 at 5:09 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, June 15, 2011 at 5:09 p.m.

Former Florida Heisman Trophy winner Danny Wuerffel was released from a hospital Wednesday after being treated for Guillain-Barre Syndrome.

Wuerffel did not want to disclose the hospital where he was treated and Desire Street Ministries director of development Barry Snyder would only say it was in the Southeast.

“I just talked to him and he was cutting up and joking,” Snyder said. “He's pretty weak. The next order for him is resting and getting stronger.”

Although the nerve disease is potentially fatal, it is treatable if caught early. In a prayer request sent out by Wuerffel this week, he said he was in good spirits.

Wuerffel began feeling ill during a retreat in late May in Colorado for Desire Street Ministries, the charitable organization he joined while a member of the New Orleans Saints. He recovered from the stomach virus, but began to lose the feeling in his legs and arms during a visit to his mission in Montgomery, Ala.

Wuerffel, 37, was diagnosed with Guillain-Barre on June 10 and the diagnosis was confirmed Wednesday. Guillain-Barre is a serious disorder that occurs when the body's defense system mistakenly attacks part of the nervous system.

“The doctors anticipate a full recovery,” Snyder said. “He has to go through weeks of treatments.”

Wuerffel was in Gainesville in April to be honored with a statue along with fellow Heisman winners Tim Tebow and Steve Spurrier (Spurrier was not present). He also played in Tebow's charity golf event in May in Jacksonville.

Wuerffel asked that anyone wanting to send good wishes or donations send them to Desire Street Ministries, headquartered in Atlanta (http://www.desirestreet.org ).

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