Hello I’m Alex, I suffer from a condition called Multiple Sclerosis. Over 100,000 people suffer with this condition in the UK, a condition said to be without effective treatment or licensed cure.
In eight years I’ve gone from an outgoing, sport playing, career minded individual - to a home dwelling, sofa laden lump, just waiting for the weekend to come, so that I can recover enough in order to work a further five days.
MS is a condition where a persons own immune system attacks their nervous system. Specifically the myelin sheath, by attacking this the nerves cannot conduct messages to and from the brain effectively, or even at all.
MS is cruel, just about everything in your body is conducted by the brain, muscle movement, vision and thought ...even toilet control too. So when these are slowly taken away, chipping away at your physical wellbeing - it’s soul destroying.
I wish MS only meant that I would suffer a limp, it’s the fatigue that's the real killer. Before diagnosis I had never known (or even imagined) tiredness like it. Turning every flight of stairs into a mountain and every supermarket shop into a marathon. I miss the unlimited energy I used to have, the ability to keep going - pain free - no matter how much I had overdone it.
Sometimes the most simple tasks can be the hardest. Using all strength to simply put a plate in the dishwasher, with all muscles under maximum strain, then the power goes! Muscle after muscle domino effect collapsing under the weight, slowing and painfully collapsing to the floor. Laying there until the muscles recover and you find the energy to pull yourself up. That happens.
Pushing it too far, I can bring on a relapse, an attack - which can mean further permanent damage.
The (HSCT) stem cell treatment I hope to have, is the closest thing thought to be a cure. Forming of chemotherapy that will wipe out my immune system, then transplanting my own stem cells back in it’s place to form a whole new immune system, one without the mindset to attack myself. Just like rebooting a computer.
Amazingly, the treatment doesn’t just halt the progression of the disease, it also gives the body the chance to regenerate and reverse the ‘permanent’ effect of MS often with near miraculous results. Going from wheelchair to running in twelve months doesn’t happen for everyone, but my age, early progression of the condition and otherwise good health means I’m a prime candidate for the treatment and positive results.
I hope one day to be able to do the simple things I miss, shopping, impromptu walks, cooking and even kicking a football. Largest of all I hope this treatment will enable us to start a family, to be an effective father and husband.
Thank you for listening and I am forever grateful to anyone able to help towards sending me for this pioneering treatment and kickstart my life again.
This is what you're donating for. To beat this condition for one man, and soon - his family.
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- Lydia Butler
- Louise Cox
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