Please Help Stacey Beat MS!
Please allow me a moment of your time to tell you about a remarkable woman, my wife, Stacey Stevens. She has been battling MS for a decade now. As this disease has progressed, it has become more difficult to feel helpful let alone hopeful. Until now. Stacey found a trial being done by renowned Doctor Burt at Northwestern. I think it best to hear it in Stacey’s own words.
As many of you know, and for those who don’t, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) 10 years ago. “No big deal,” I thought. A little foot drop, optic neuritis, I might fall here and there but I won’t let it get in my way. Fast-forward to 2012, when I had a huge relapse. I had paralysis in both my legs and right arm and I thought this is it. But, with very hard work, 8 days in the hospital, steroids and LOTS of physical therapy, I came back almost 100%. That April, I took a family trip out West and walked in flip flops! I wish that was the case now. In the last year, I have declined greatly. I use a walker and a scooter. A typical day for me now: I open my eyes and wonder how I will do today. Lying still, I know as soon as I go to move, my body will stiffen and cramp up. I can’t just run to the grocery store. Most days fear of falling wins. There is a lot of planning just for regular outings that I used to take for granted.
Then a ray of hope! I came across HSCT (Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplant). I applied and was told they would evaluate me. So, I went to Chicago to see if I qualified. After a lot of tests and paperwork and more tests, I received news when I got home. I had been accepted! The procedure will be over 8 weeks in Chicago and will entail harvesting cells, using chemotherapy to deplete the remaining cells and then infusion of stored stem cells in an effort to “reboot” the immune system, helping to halt the symptoms of MS from progressing.
The procedure will take place in February 2016, after a 6 month “wash out” of my disease modifying drug. Although insurance will cover the transplant, I will be responsible for co-pays, airfare, hotel and food for me and my caregiver. This is a challenge I cannot face alone.
To help with the financial burden of Stacey’s uninsured expenses, a fundraising campaign in her honor has been established with HelpHOPELive, a trusted nonprofit organization that has been providing community-based fundraising guidance to patients and their families for more than 30 years. All donations are tax-deductible, are held by HelpHOPELive in the Southeast Stem Cell Transplant Fund, and are administered by HelpHOPELive for transplant-related expenses only. Please consider a contribution.
For credit card contributions, please click the yellow Donate Now button.
Your prayers and support and sharing Stacy’s story would be greatly appreciated. I thank you all for taking the time to read her story.
With sincere gratitude,
Kyle Stevens (Stacey’s husband)
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Help Hope Live
Note in memo:
In honor of Stacey Stevens
Help Hope Live
2 Radnor Corporate Center
100 Matsonford Road
Radnor, PA 19087