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Please help me have the gift of walking again

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MY STORY

My name is Sonia Vera, I am 48 years old and I’m from San Francisco, CA. I have spent my entire adult life traveling around the world modeling. I have been a model for 20 + years, appearing as a TV host on several networks and owning my own swimwear brand, which I had to dissolve when I became paralyzed. In a matter of hours I went from being self employed and independent , to then have to relying on others to care for me.

I moved to London in 2014 with my husband. In Jun of 2017, I woke up fine but shortly after an hour, I started to feel off. My arms felt like they were asleep, my fingers stop moving and I was having severe chest pain. I was taken to the hospital, where they said it was just anxiety. I was sent home and told to take a nap, that I would feel better when I woke up. 5 hours later I woke up paralyzed. I was rushed to the hospital, where for the next 16 hours no one believed me when I insisted I was paralyzed. 24 hours went by before anyone took the time to listen. Finally after an MRI was done, it showed that I had an inflammation of the spine, at the C4-C6.

After 2 spinal taps and countless blood drawn , everything came back negative. They could not find anything that suggested I was ill. They said I had a Rare Neurological Autoimmune Disorder , with no cure, called Transverse Myelitis. I was told I had the possibility of walking again, but what that recovery would look like, depended on how soon I could start walking and regaining some movements of my limbs and fingers. Because not much is known about transverse myelitis in the UK , there isn’t very many options for possible recovery or a research trials.

I was in the hospital for 6 months. The physical therapy was very limited. I was given about 30 minutes a day. When I left the hospital , my father sent me to Neurokinex, a gym for SCI. There I began rigorous therapy, 3 days a week, 2 hours a day. I could see some movement on my left leg.

I would love the opportunity to travel to The University of Louisville’s Kentucky Spinal Cord Injury Research Center to participate in the Epidural Stimulator clinical trial, that could possibly make those with SCI walk again http://victoryoverparalysis.org/ . If I get chosen, I would have to pay for housing, care and food all on my own. My current health insurance would not be able to cover my outside Neuro PT or home care services.

I would be grateful for your support, so that I can have a chance to travel to the states for this breakthrough trial and rehabilitation, I dream of one day walking again, traveling again and having a better quality of live

Thank you
















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Donations 

  • Katherine Aparicio
    • £50 
    • 15 d
  • Khavita Kamrodeen
    • £20 
    • 8 mos
  • Tanika Yancy
    • £20 
    • 8 mos
  • richelle hunter
    • £5 
    • 8 mos
  • Chelsea Ryle
    • £5 
    • 8 mos
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Sonia Vera
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