Cardiomyopathy is a heart muscle disease that affects 1 in 500 of the population and is the most common medical cause of sudden death in under 35 year olds. In March last year I was diagnosed with Left Ventricular non-compaction (LVNC), a rare type of heart muscle disease which has no known cure. Cardiomyopathy UK are an incredible charity that work on educating medical professionals about the disease and provide knowledge and support to patients and their families. The charity has been invaluable to me since my diagnosis, and by raising funds for them we’ll be able to continue their incredible hard work and support newly diagnosed patients when they’re at their most vulnerable.
I had been blacking out regularly, which increased as I got older, and eventually I was sent for tests which led to my diagnosis of LVNC last year. In April 2014, shortly after my 20th birthday, I had an ICD fitted. It is a small device which sits under my chest muscle with a small wire leading into my heart. The device acts as both a pacemaker and a defibrillator, with the capability of providing a shock four times stronger than that of a household plug socket.
Cardiomyopathy UK (http://www.cardiomyopathy.org) have been incredible over the past year. They have provided me with the information and support I needed at an incredibly delicate time for both me and my family, and helped us to remain positive. They have put me in touch with patients similar to me, provided a source of endless knowledge, and they have provided a helpline where patients are able to speak to a specialist nurse. They also strive to increase knowledge of Cardiomyopathy in the medical world, so that patients are tested for conditions like this sooner when reporting symptoms related to that of the condition, helping to save lives.
Cardiomyopathy UK are a truly amazing charity, who rely on public donations to enable them to spread the word and educate about heart muscle disease, but also to provide support an information to patients and their families. Without our donations newly diagnosed patients, like myself, would not receive the support they need at a terrifying, life-changing time of their lives.
On the 3rd of April I will be abseiling Spinnaker Tower to raise money for Cardiomyopathy UK, so that they can continue to raise awareness and provide much needed support to patients, families and their friends. To make a donation please follow the link to my just-giving page below.