I'm crowdfunding for Spinal Cord Stimulation surgery to treat my CRPS that causes debilitating chronic nerve pain in my back, hips and legs. To know more, see below or check out my short YouTube video summarising my story. There is also information in the articles written by the Leicester Mercury and Somerset Live about my disability and fundraiser.
I'm 21 and I have suffered from severe chronic pain since I was 8 years old, caused by Complex Regional Pain Syndrome . The condition causes extreme nerve pain that made me reliant on a wheelchair and walking aids for large periods of my childhood.
Over the last 2 years my condition has deteriorated significantly. My pain has spread to new areas of my body and I am more reliant on my wheelchair and crutches than ever before. I have tried every treatment available to me without any success, even taking extremely strong painkillers barely eases the pain. The pain has become so bad I have only been able to sleep 2-3 hours a night. I struggle to sit upright for more than a few minutes at a time given the pain this causes in my hips and lower back.
My illness worsened to the point where I was unable to work. I was forced to leave my job working as an economist in London (this was a 12-month placement as part of my undergraduate degree) and move back home so that my parents could look after me. My pain and resulting sleep deprivation make it a challenge to even focus on the TV, let alone be able to work or sit up through university lectures.
The glimmer of hope I have is a surgery used to treat neuropathic pain, Spinal Cord Stimulation surgery. A generator is implanted into the patients body to block the pain signals going to up to the brain. The surgery can drastically reduce chronic pain and for some sufferers even make them pain free. Having lived in constant pain for 13 years, this would be an unimaginable miracle for me.
I have tried to access this surgery through the NHS. However given the current strain and tight budgets, I am still not on the waiting list for surgery, despite having lived over half my life with debilitating chronic pain. The NHS is fantastic and I am so appreciative for the treatment I have received throughout my life. But, particularly due to the pandemic, it simply doesn’t have the resources to offer me this life changing surgery any time soon.
Because my CRPS is spreading down my body at a rapid rate, the sooner I can get surgery, the more effective it will likely be. So to have a chance to recover from my illness, I need to have the surgery as soon as possible.
My illness has stripped away almost all of my independence. I am unable to work, sleep, or spend time with my friends. But I’m not asking to run marathons or to be able to dance. I simply want to not be drowning in pain so I can focus on other things in my life. I hope to have the ability to cook myself a meal, sleep for more than 45 minutes at a time, and ultimately be well enough to finish studying for my degree I have worked so hard for.
Therefore, I am trying to crowdfund to have the surgery completed as soon as possible. This could enable me to be well enough to regain some independence, finish my economics degree and enjoy life again.
Any contribution, no matter how small, towards the cost of having the surgery done privately would be absolutely amazing if you are able.
I realise this is an incredibly difficult and uncertain time for everyone, so please feel no pressure to donate. If you can, please share my page to raise awareness for the cause.
Thank you for all the love and support.
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- Hannah Halman
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