Kellee was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) around 5 years ago, although it's believed she has been suffering from this disease for anywhere around 15 years. Unfortunately the last 5 years is when it started becoming aggressive, slowly but surely debilitating my mum to the point where she can't walk unaided and needs to use a wheelchair for what should be considered easy tasks for a 52 year old, such as meeting a friend for lunch, watching her son play baseball, browsing around the shops etc.
It has been beyond painful for myself and my family to watch my mum go through this, so I can only imagine how painful it has actually been for my mum herself. Whilst she will always have me to do the things she no longer can, my mum would like to know that it's not going to get any worse for her, that this is the worst it'll get and then learn how to deal with that.
This is where Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (HSCT) comes into play. Since the beginning of the year, I have been researching this treatment and trying with every single piece of me to get my mum accepted in a hospital for treatment.
HSCT is the transplantation of multipotent hematopoietic stem cells, usually derived from bone marrow or peripheral blood. In easier terms, the overview of the treatment goes - stem cell deriving and harvesting, chemotherapy, then implanting the stem cells back into the patients body. After this is done, and after a rehabilitation period, the treatment should effectively stop the MS from progressing completely and hopefully reverse some damage too. This treatment essentially wipes away the immune system attacked by the MS using chemotherapy, then rebuilds an otherwise healthy and 'new' immune system by implanting the harvested stem cells.
Unfortunately, HSCT isn't an approved practice in Australia although it's being practiced (and has been practiced for over 20 years) by many hospitals all over the world. Due to Kellee being in the stage of Secondary Progressive MS, we were limited to which hospitals we could apply for. Clinica Ruiz in Puebla, Mexico, have accepted Kellee for treatment with the admission date of June 29th, 2015. As this is an international medical procedure and technically not approved by Australian medicine, this is an out of pocket expense for us. The treatment alone will be costing us around $61,000AUD, plus flights there costing us around $3,500 each. My dad and I will both be accompanying my mum to Mexico for her treatment for the entire 6-8 weeks that she will be undergoing it.
I don't expect to raise anywhere near the amount the treatment will cost, but whatever does get raised will help beyond words can explain.
Please, from the bottom of my heart, help my mum and my family by helping us raise funds to stop this terrible disease from further hurting her, and indirectly us. People often think donating just involves money, but it involves time too. If you can't afford to donate an amount, I do completely understand and thank you for already donating your time by reading this campaign which has accidentally turned into a tiny novel (oops), but can I please trouble you to donate an extra minute or two of your time to share this campaign for Kellee?
Thank you again, any minute or dollar donated will help us more than you'll ever know.
- Jordan Claxton
- Serena Parr
- Bree & Rob Rob
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