Multiple Sclerosis sufferer Shelley Haines is calling for Deniliquin to walk for a cure this Sunday.TYLA HARRINGTON May 27, 2014 3:45am
Deniliquin’s Henry and Nick Robinson, Robbie Landale, Ava Robinson, Shelley Haines and Hugo and Andrew Malin show their support for the event.
Deniliquin’s Shelley Haines has issued a heartfelt plea to the community to support a fundraising initiative to be held locally for the first time this Sunday.
A local version of the nationwide event Kiss Goodbye to MS is being held just three weeks after Shelley, a multiple sclerosis sufferer, was told by doctors that her treatment for the debilitating disease had become ineffective.
The 33 year-old hopes the Deni River Walk for MS will go some way in helping researchers get a step closer to finding a cure.
Shelley was diagnosed with MS — a chronic disease that affects the central nervous system, including the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves — in 2007.
At the time she was living in Deniliquin when she experienced her first episode of MS and temporarily lost vision in one eye. It took two months for her vision to return.
After visiting Deniliquin Hospital and an optometrist, Shelley was taken to the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital for treatment and tests.
She was told she could be suffering from either a brain tumour or MS.
It wasn’t until three months later, however, that a Magnetic Resonance Imaging test in Albury revealed Shelley had MS.
The three-month wait was ‘‘extremely difficult’’, Shelley said.
She started MS treatment immediately which included a self-injection every second day, however it was deemed ineffective.
Doctors prescribed a new injection treatment but it was also unsuccessful.
Finally it was decided Shelley would travel to Albury once a month where she would be administered an infusion treatment.
And up until two weeks ago the treatment was deemed effective, but doctors have since revealed it is no longer suitable for her.
She is now left waiting until doctors can find an appropriate treatment.
‘‘I would definitely encourage people to support this weekend’s cause,’’ she said.
‘‘Hopefully we can get closer to finding a cure.’’
The Deni River Walk for MS is being organised by Robbie Landale, who had a family member diagnosed with MS 1 years ago.
‘‘When we found out (the family member had MS) it threw a real curve ball at us,’’ Mrs Landale said.
‘‘But now we realise there are things we can do, such as raise funds for a cure.
‘‘More than 23,000 Australians have MS and the average age of diagnosis is 30 years old. That’s what really gets me.
‘‘It is three times more likely for a woman to get MS than a man.
‘‘This is the first time I’ve done something like this but we will do lots more.
‘‘Hopefully we can raise enough money to make a difference.’’
And so far the community’s response has been amazing, Mrs Landale says.
‘‘The more we raise the more chance there is of finding a cure.’’
The walk will start from McLean Beach at 10am and will travel to Willoughby’s Beach and back. Registration is at 9am.
People are encouraged to wear something red and a minimum donation of $5 is required.
Mrs Landale says people are also welcome to choose their own distance.
For more information, phone Mrs Landale on 0427
To donate, visit www.kissgoodbyetoms.org/fundraisers/individuals/robyn-landale and follow the prompts.
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