Harald is in medical crisis and needs your help

The past year has been extremely difficult for me, as I have been trying the best I can to keep my head above water whilst I battle some form of motor-neurological medical condition which after months and months, remains undiagnosed as I battle with the broken medical system here in BC.

This medical condition has impacted my ability to do my paint restoration and custom painting work, yet my business and life expenses continue. For those of you who know me, or were a client and value the work I did for you, I am in a very difficult place emotionally and financially right now. And I have prepared this appeal to ask for any financial help you can provide in my time of need. Any amount of money you can support me with, no matter how small, will be greatly appreciated. 

Those of you who have seen me throughout the past year, will have noticed that what started as a slur in my speech, has now developed into a difficulty using my hands, with an accompanying loss of balance and strength which makes walking a difficult challenge for me.

The frustrating reality is I cannot work like I used to. And the medical system is thus far useless in helping me as things continue to get worse.

I cannot stand and balance myself to do spray painting. Hand detail work like sanding, masking and working with small tools is very difficult for me.

In the shop we have work piled up and luckily I have found a qualified painter who is able to come in and paint on a very limited basis. He has another full time job in the aerospace industry so by the Grace of God he also does some work for me, but not nearly enough.

So the speed that we were able to move projects through the shop has slowed dramatically. This painter is of course paid for his time (he can not afford volunteering his time). Therefore, I am having to pay someone to do the work I used to do before this medical condition eroded my motor-dexterity and mobility to the point where it is now.

The reality is work and projects are waiting but I do not have the physical and financial ability to get them completed quick enough. The fixed costs of the shop and my residence cost several thousand dollars per month. The business is dependent on my doing the bulk of the paint work, and my condition is getting worse and worse.

It is shocking to believe but the BC medical system has completely let me down. I am a living casualty of our broken medical system, and my voice cannot be heard.

The failure of our medical system is so upsetting to me as I thought it was a safety net that would be there for all of us in times of need. Only when it happens to you, and your work and livelihood is being taken away, because you cannot access a possible cure for a medical condition, and you get to the point where you need to appeal to friends for financial help to help prevent your life from crumbling away, do you realize what a catastrophe this is.

I have been told I might possibly be suffering the debilitating effects of a Rathke Cleft cyst, which is a cyst in the brain that can cause the symptoms I am experiencing.

It could successfully be treated by surgery, but the sooner it is treated the better. Our medical system has not even been able to get me a first time appointment with a neurosurgeon, let alone the brain scans so I can know with certainty the cause of my declining health.

My own doctor is near useless, he will not even tell me the name of the neurosurgeon he is trying to refer me to, so it is 100 percent impossible for me to follow up or accelerate my diagnosis, let alone start the very first steps of possible treatment.

Thank you so much for reading about my situation. Any help is accepted with much gratitude. I am looking forward to much better days.

Harald Strasser
Toxik Design Lab
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Harald Strasser 
Richmond, BC