I am 37 years old and was diagnosed last December with MS when I had 2 separate attacks of optical neuritis which affected my eye sight. Since then I have been suffering from chronic leg pain for the last 6 months, muscle weakness, memory loss and fatigue which has been debilitating.
I am extremely worried about what future I will have with this disease, and that one day I may wake up and have to use a wheelchair for the rest of my life. I have a beautiful family which I love and want to be there for them in the future. I want to be able to enjoy going for walks and bike rides with my girls (Holly and Matilda) again like I used to. I want to get my energy back. At the moment I feel that everyday chores eg: getting the kids ready for school , putting the kids to bed , are a huge effort for me as I feel completely exhausted most of the time .
Since seeing this treatment on 60 minutes a couple of months ago about Kristy Cruise's stem cell treatment HSCT which was done in Russia and with a lot of research myself, I decided to apply to have the treatment done in Russia. I was accepted a few weeks ago for January 2015.
I have attached the link to the 60 minutes story for everyone to see.
The most positive results for stem cell transplant are in the early stages of MS, so I know it is important for me to have this procedure done ASAP. This procedure stops the disease in it's tracks. As I have quite a few lesions on the brain and a couple on the spine already the sooner I can start treatment the better the outcome.
(HSCT) Hematopoietic Stem Cell Procedure:
The stem cells are taken from my body and put through a special machine where they are cleaned and then frozen.
I then go through 5 days of Chemotherapy to wipe out all the bad T cells in the body which are attacking my nerves. They then reinstate my own stem cells back into my body. The process is quite an ordeal but I am positive that the process is worth it as it will stop my MS in it's tracks.
It takes up to 1-2 years for complete immune recovery so I will have to stay home for a quite a while.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a autoimmune disease that attacks the Central Nervous System (nerves in the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves).
Diagnosis of MS is typically between 20-40 years of age although the onset of the disease maybe earlier.
Currently 23,000 people in Australia have MS with 75% more women than men are diagnosed. The severity of progress and specific symtoms cannot be predicted.
MS is a life long disease. The cause is unknown and there is no known cure. While there are disease-modifying drugs used to treat MS none of them stop the progression. The HSCT treatment is currently not available in Australia for people with MS.
The HSCT treatment has been done in Russia for 10 years and the hospital have treated over 280 MS patients with 80 % success rate. The earlier the treatment is done the better the success. It is important that it is done in the early stages as it can not reverse any previous damage. It halts the MS at the stage it is at, therefore stops any progression .
I need help to raise the funds to have the treatment done in January 2015.
The funds raised will help cover the treatment and other costs involved such as flights etc.
Any donations no matter how small is greatly appreciated.
Robyn Surmon xxxx
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