Help Save A Life B4 Time Runs Out

Bunny (Ellyn)  Hartman was stricken with this horrible and painful disease, CRPS  in September, 2011 becoming disabled almost immediately. Seeking out numerous specialists to identify this indescribable pain it was years later including two years of being bedridden before a diagnosis was finally made by Bunny, herself, then finally verified the diagnosis in January, 2015. Bunny has RSD/CRPS
( Complex Regional Pain Syndrome ) which began in front of both of her thighs, and due to lack of treatment the disease has spread from her thighs, front and back, entirely down both legs to the bottom of her feet.  She also has this disease in her right hand which is traveling up her arm past her elbow along with atrophy in both hands and wrists, atrophy under both eyes temples and now also on the right buttocks.   She lives every moment of every day with constant pain.   I'm speaking of the worst most extreme level of pain far and above any other disease that exists.
Update: Bunny currently has the disease throughout her entire body with exception of her chest and stomach. This includes having the disease inside her mouth and throat.

Treatments can be very expensive and most treatments are not covered by insurance. There is still a lot of research being done on what is considered to be the most painful and cruel of all diseases.  Many times patients voluntarily have the affected limb removed due to the torturous level of pain.   Many others take their own lives. Because of the high rate of lives lost CRPS has been nicknamed the "Suicide Disease". 

There is no cure. 

In the United States the best treatment offered are Ketamine Infusions. This is a very serious IV treatment of four hours.  One must be sedated for this treatment due to hallucinations.  The patient is unable to care for themselves and requires a "caregiver" as the sedation lingers for up to two days. Post Ketamine migraines can last up to a month. The patient must also do what is considered to be the impossible. Prior to treatment the patient must wean completely off all pain medication that has helped them survive.  This can put a patient through numerous horrible excruciating symptoms.  There is the obvious withdrawal of the medication, sleep deprivation, mood swings, depression, suicidal thoughts, night sweats, anger, irritation, anxiety, stress, hopelessness, fear, desperation, inability to walk, and ability to think clearly, inability to make rational decisions, inability to care for oneself on the most simple level. And to be alone through these and many more symptoms makes the patient feel even more desperate and hopeless.  The pain is something that is completely unimaginable!

This is a disease that can easily be spread if you are grabbed too hard  or in some type of an accident. And even if you are fortunate enough to go into remission, even a hug could cause the disease to return.

The initial funds that I raised were used specifically for treatments with Ketamine Infusions, including all expenses to receive treatments and illnesses associated with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome also known as CRPS/RSD .  I was able to get this treatment by also saving $1000 of my own money and getting a discount from the doctor in Florida. Once I found out that ketamine treatment long term will cause your organs to shut down I had to completely rely on pain medication until I could find some type of treatment.


There is a treatment in Italy which they have been doing studies on in the US. The treatment has been putting people into remission. The treatment is $15,000. The longer I wait the less likely it is that the treatment will work. I was in a double-blind study using the same medication as they use in the treatment but was given the placebo. They are still currently doing studies in the United States but they're not using the exact same protocol as the treatment in Italy which my doctor has informed me they're also doing in Russia.

No contribution is too small. 

Treatment which funds were used for:

I have already received a 10 day high dose of Ketamine in August, 2015.   All treatments require travel to Florida. The doctor wanted me back two weeks later  for my first two day booster treatments.  Due to lack of funding I had my to wait until  October 15th and 16th.  I was supposed to return in two weeks again for a two day booster and then again two weeks following.  After that I would have required boosters every month for two months. Almost all people afflicted with CRPS require a lifetime of treatments.

Donations are not transferred directly to the patient. There is a total of 7.9% taken from each donation as a fee from this site and a fee included in sending the payment to the patient. The number you see is not the amount of money that is received.

I have decided not to have any more ketamine infusions because it is a lifetime of treatment and it is so hard on your body that your organs begin to fail. This is why I am focusing on this new treatment in Europe. It will be quite a while before the FDA approves it in the United States. The treatment is IV neridronate. So far they have found it to be completely safe with no long-term side effects. There is extreme pain after the first treatment but it is only a couple days where you feel absolutely horrible as it has been described as chest pain and heavy weight on your chest along with flu like symptoms. It does keep you bedridden but only for two days after the first treatment. Three more treatments follow and it is usually smooth sailing so it is a week and a half in Italy for the entire treatment. They allow you to bring a companion to stay with you. My daughter will be my companion if I am able to raise these funds soon enough for the treatment to have any effect.


I am on pain medication for a reason as you can see on the McGill scale below. If you scroll to the bottom there is a picture of this scale showing how painful this disease truly is.  Ketamine had helped reduce my pain dramatically but only for one month. I did go for one booster treatment because I could not raise enough money and I also used my own money for the initial treatment as well as the booster but could not afford to complete one full cycle of ketamine infusions. I am finally applying for my cannabis card as well. It might help me to reduce my oral medication which would be healthier for my body. There are many side effects that I have to treat from the medications that I take.

My hope is in Italy. I hear they are also doing this in Russia and Germany. Germany is trying to help fast forward this new treatment in the United States.

Remember, most treatments for this disease are not covered by insurance. If that were the case I would not be trying to raise money. I have emailed and spoken with the doctors in Italy and I had already been qualified for the treatment. If too much time goes by I will no longer be qualified.

I hope this helps you to understand how important this is to me and how serious I am about this.


Prior to this, the chance of remission when having CRPS and using ketamine infusions there was only a 2% if caught within the first year. Your chance of going into remission with stage four lung cancer that has metastasized is 5%.  I think that comparison really puts things into perspective.   

Your donations mean more now than ever because this is my chance at life!  Please make donations, please tell your friends directly what this is about versus simply putting a random post on your timeline on Facebook. I beg that people please take the extra step to try to help me to have a life. You will literally be saving a life! People make donations every day to help strangers, strangers have helped me.  I have made donations for causes. People help victims of natural disasters and to help animals that have been abused.  All I'm doing is asking people if they can help me in any way possible. Whatever is comfortable for you whether it's donating one dollar or sharing my story with others, everything helps.

I have a daughter who needs me and I am all she has and she is the only reason I am still alive at this point.   There are many deserving causes out there that need your help. You send your money to a major charity and you know it's going to good use. Or you hope it is as we have seen in the past that the monies have not been appropriated as they should have.  In my case you'll actually know who you are helping and how you are helping me and you will see the results of the help that you have given. You will see that you are making a difference in the life and not just one life but in the life of a child.I've been through more suffering than any person should ever have to go through. I want my life back and a chance to regain even a small portion of what I have lost and worked my entire life for.  Being as sick as I am, people have turned on me, assaulted me, stolen money from me, stolen medication from me and watched me suffer.  I  have been abused in numerous ways and much much worse.  I have always been a positive person and always  helped people in need with a wonderful attitude, living an extremely healthy lifestyle and I was the best person I could possibly be. I  always felt that I was a very lucky person who lived an extremely full life and had resigned to the fact that my life was over. I now have hope so please help if you can in any way that you can just by spreading the word and taking a little bit of time to talk to the people that you know whether it be your friends or coworkers.  I am happy to email you any information you can share or snail mail you posters and information to share.

Even the smallest of contributions would be helpful and deeply appreciated.  Every dollar makes a difference because it all adds up.

Documented Medical Information:

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), or Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD), as it was previously known, is an excruciating chronic and complex disorder of the autonomic nervous system (dysautonomia), leading to constant pain that is recorded as being as severe as finger amputation without anesthetic.

It is devastating for patients as is often diagnosed too late for full remission, though it is vital to never give up hope, people can and do go into remissions but sadly [at the moment] it is only a small percentage.

Currently, CRPS is considered to be a condition that includes interactions between the immune system, the ANS and the Central Nervous System (CNS). There are a huge number of coexisting symptoms, many of which are incredibly hard to deal with simply as they are so contrary to both how patients appear (often looking healthy) and how at odds they are to ‘normal’ healthy human behavior.

Stating that someone needs to step back, because the allodynic pain of them standing too close is making the patients nerves go crazy, or asking someone to speak more quietly or stop rustling a plastic bag all sound very strange yet these things can cause already excruciating pain to crescendo and magnifies the patents symptoms and discomfort.

CRPS is a severely disabling condition characterized by burning pain, increased sensitivity to all stimuli, and sensations of pain in response to normally non-painful stimuli including: light touch, a breeze, sound, vibration, bright lights and even something as small as someone speaking at a normal volume.

In addition, CRPS is characterized by motor disturbances such as weakness, tremor and muscle spasms and sympathetic dysfunction, such as changes in vascular tone, temperature changes and increased sweating.

Neurological effects of CRPS, including long term cognitive and mood changes and may be incorrectly treated as existing separately from the condition, however new research will hopefully help raise awareness. It has been shown that neuropsychological deficits are present in 65% of CRPS patients, including deficits in the executive functions, for example planning, organizing, self-awareness, self-regulation and initiation of action, word recall lexical memory and conscious memory of events declarative memory.

Sleep is massively affected, though this is unsurprising given the CNS and ANS changes and of course, constant severe pain.

CRPS is currently viewed as involving interactions between the immune system, the ANS and the Central Nervous System.

In most cases an upper or lower limb is affected but spreading can and does occur to other body parts, or many different body parts at the same time (as with full body or systemic CRPS) including internal organs.

CRPS may be understood as a biopsychosocial disorder, whereby psychological, behavioral and pathophysiological factors interact in a highly complex manner. Most studies of CRPS have focused on the peripheral and spinal mechanisms responsible for the origin and development of the syndrome. However, the emerging view is that the peripheral (autonomic and somatosensory) changes in CRPS must be viewed as a manifestation of changes in the brain.


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Bunny Hartman 
Lake Zurich, IL
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