This list is incomplete. You can help by expanding it, either through adding an already known condition or through bioterrorism. However, the former is strongly recommended.

This list is also badly organized. I am planning on doing an overhaul at some point to be able to accurately classify everything on here. I'm thinking of organizing it more specifically by what it does such as "demyelination" or where the symptoms occur or the cause or progression, or maybe I'll have a bunch of lists for each method of categorization. But for now, here's my main list. Any condition that doesn't have a link from it, feel free to create a page and add info on it.

Feel free to add to this list as well. You are welcome to add any disease as long as paralysis is at least one of the symptoms, even if it's a minor symptom that happens 1% of the time or if it's some obscure disease nobody's heard of. Both of those are welcome, as I am trying to make this list as complete as possible.

Also, neurotoxins are NOT on this list, simply because there are so many of them. Botulism and tetanus are here because the condition of being infected with the bacteria that produce the toxins is considered a disease. There is a separate page for neurotoxins. There is also a separate page for movement disorders that are not truly paralytic but still affect movement, stuff like dysdiadochokinesia, tardive dyskinesia, and chorea.

The ListEdit

Note that not everything on this list is guaranteed to cause paralysis if you get it, but everything on here CAN.


  • Poliomyelitis
  • Rabies
  • Botulism
  • Syphilis
  • Diphtheria
  • Lyme disease
  • Leprosy
  • Tetanus

Genetic (usually problems making some sort of enzyme, ends up affecting brain/nerves)

  • Tay-Sachs disease
  • Adrenoleukodystrophy
  • Krabbe Disease
  • Canavan disease
  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease
  • Machado-Joseph disease
  • Pompe Disease
  • Porphyria


  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Guillain-Barré syndrome
  • ​Closely related in symptoms is Transverse Myelitis – same sort of symptoms but affects sensory neurons more, isn’t always symmetrical at first, and can have an almost sudden onset. It’s in your spinal cord.
  • ​Miller-Fisher Syndrome
  • Acute motor and sensory axonal neuropathy
  • CIDP – Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy
  • Paraproteinaemic Demyelinating Neuropathy
  • Myasthenia gravis
  • Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome
  • Neuromyelitis optica
  • Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis

Injury or something on or messing with the nerve

  • Herniated disc
  • ​Spinal cord injury
  • ​Brown-Sequard syndrome
  • ​Spina bifida (you’re born with it)
  • ​Bell’s palsy
  • ​**Anything ending with palsy (there’s a lot, so there is a detailed list of specific nerves and functions to come to find which one is best for you)
  • ​**Anything with “Neuropathy” such as peripheral mononeuropathy, polyneuropathy,
  • Spinal Stroke
    • Arteriovenous malformation is a common cause
  • Syringomyelia
  • Compartment syndrome

Brain Problems

  • Cerebral palsy (usually happens right after birth)
  • Chiari malformation
  • Central pontine myelinolysis
  • Stroke
  • Dystonia
    • ​Meige’s syndrome – neck tilts up, this one's on here because of the guy on mystery diagnosis :)
  • Encephalitis
    • ​Rasmussen’s encephalitis
  • Brain Abscess
  • Brain Tumor
  • ​Neoblastoma – in kids
  • Cavernous Sinus Thrombosis
  • Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy
  • Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome - head rush stroke

Other/Not quite known cause

  • ​Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and variations
  • ​​Primary Lateral Sclerosis – only affects upper motor neurons
  • ​​Progressive bulbar palsy – affects face


  • ​Beriberi
  • ​Hyperkalemia​
  • ​Hypokalemia
  • ​Low blood pH (in severe cases, you notice other symptoms first)
  • ​Hypermagnesemia
  • ​Hypophospatemia
  • Hyponatremia (very severe cases)