Tuesday, November 30, 2010

My Response to Maureen MacDonald's Email

Re: Correspondence - 102010026 - Marcel

Dear Ms. MacDonald,

This is in response to your email included below received on Nov. 18, 2010. Because of the timing of this letter and my worsening condition, I took this letter as it was intended, as a further attempt to shorten my life by adding more stress to my already compromised system. You have never hidden the fact that you are willing to let patients die in this province. You just conveniently skirt the issue so as to not look like the murderer.

It is no wonder why you are probably the most hated person in the province of Nova Scotia right now. MS patients do not take this disease lightly. Until you decided to take a stance that would kill patients, MS patients would never have wished their illness on anyone. From the comments that are being made, I do hope wishes do not come true for you and your family.

Because you have taken the liberty of condemning me to death by refusing treatment for a known fatal form of Multiple Sclerosis. I will also take the liberty to reply to your letter publicly to point out your errors and the importance of having you removed from your position as Minister of Health.

For simplicity sake, I have colored your email in red.

Dear Mr. Gignac:

Thank you for your e-mails dated September 13, and October 10, 2010, to
the Honourable Darrell Dexter and me, regarding the experimental
treatment for Multiple Sclerosis (MS). The Premier requested that I
respond on his behalf. 

First and foremost, the letters sent were directed to you and copied to the Premier. They were an official request for a compassionate intervention to possibly save my life. Your comment of responding for the Premier would infer you have no intentions on doing your job as mandated. This of course is only one of the reasons there is now a petition at http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/nsccsvi/ requesting you be removed as Minister of Health.

I mention the petition as it may look similar to a letter that was hand delivered to you by Mr. Alfie MacLeod (PC) that I wrote. The petition itself is not mine, it is based off that letter. The letter was shared and the petition was born. So a fair warning would be, that you are no longer dealing with me and a few of my friends, but more like 75,000 patients and their families and supporters.

I understand that you have spoken with Ms. Kathryn Morse, my Executive
Assistant regarding your concerns. The Nova Scotia government is
concerned about citizens suffering from MS, and I want to reassure them
that we have their health and safety in mind as we make these difficult

I have spoken to Ms. Morse several times, as you refuse to speak with me. Ms. Morse was also the one that suggested I try to find a doctor in this province who could do the procedure. We found several. We also found that they were trained in the exact procedure for treating CCSVI. Of course you also know we found out that the province was paying to have these doctors and technicians secretly trained. If the Nova Scotia government was concerned about citizens suffering from MS, I would not be expending the energy in writing this reply.

Currently no province in Canada is offering this treatment or doing
clinical trials yet. Here in Nova Scotia, there are no doctors prepared
to provide this treatment.

This is a blatant lie. The media reported on Dr. Gerald MacKean and his assistant being trained to do the procedure. These are the only names that were given and we apologize that they had to be named, but your Executive Assistant should have relayed the information to you instead of leaving us to pass it along as we did. Or you should have done your job and spoken to me. The only reason other doctors were not named is because I do not think it is right that they should be harassed by 3000 patients trying to save their lives, when you are the one responsible.

At the recent Annual Health Ministers’ meeting, we agreed that the
best thing we can do at this point is to ask our staff to help
accelerate the research being recommended by the Canadian Institutes of
Health Research, without undermining the medical research. As Health
Ministers we want to be helpful, but require the medical and proven
scientific research and clinical results, before making decisions on
this important issue. We want to be sure that what we recommend is safe,
and proven.

The meeting was a farce. The recommendations were taken from a panel of so-called experts all which have a vested interest in CCSVI not being offered. I also have to point out what your so-called experts are. They are readers. Nothing more. Every MS Neurologist became one by reading textbooks written by other doctors. Because this was written by doctors it is taken as Gospel. The part that you and others do not realize is that the information in those books, came from the interpretation that a doctor made about what his patients told him.

I have read these books. I know where the mistake were made. If a patient can not effectively describe the 'feeling' of the symptom, then the doctor makes an assumption. And like you have done in your role as Health Minister making the assumption that you were listening to the real experts, are also wrong.

The only true experts in Multiple Sclerosis are the people that suffer from the disease. This goes for any disease. In this day and age, most people know enough to get second opinions. Like Health Ministers, doctors make mistakes. It happens everyday and is usually the result of making an assumption. You ma'am are getting your information from the wrong source.

It is clear to me that we need that research to balance safety with the
need for new treatments. We want answers as quickly as possible, so that
we can collectively move forward to determining what is in the best
interests of MS patients.

It is clear to me that this province wants to move as slowly as possible in doing what is best for the people. It is no secret that Nova Scotia sits in the industrial armpit of North America. Our location is ideal for all of the airborne toxins from the west of Canada, as well as the Gulf Stream pushing the air up from the Eastern US Seaboard, to eventually swirl above Atlantic Canada until it is pushed to sea.

I have always been proud to be from Nova Scotia, our province has had a great history and we hold many great records. Unfortunately we also hold some not so great records. Because of our location we have some of the highest rates in the world for neurological disorders and cancers. One record that NS should not be proud of is having the highest incidences of MS in the world and a Health Minister that refuses to help patients. 

Instead of being famous as the last province in the country to approve Lucentis, do you not think it is time that we do something right for the people for a change and maybe be the first province to help MS patients? 

This approach is consistent with the North American panel of experts
assembled by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Multiple
Sclerosis Society of Canada, who concluded in August that “there is
overwhelming lack of scientific evidence”. 

There was overwhelming lack of scientific evidence that the H1N1 vaccine would work. There were no trials. Billions of dollars were spent. Like the feared pandemic, there was little effect. There are also no trials for the flu shots given out every year, yet that is allowed to happen. The angioplasty procedure that is used has been used for over 30 years. It is quick, safer than any drug without a trial, and very effective. It is preformed in Canada for heart patients to correct arteries, as well as used for kidney patients to correct veins. This is nothing new. The part that is new now in this country, is a patient that is diagnosed with MS and needs to have angio to correct a heart or kidney, will die because of stupidity.

While I was being treated for CCSVI a fellow patients also from NS was being treated. That treatment definitely saved her life. I will admit that her MS would not have killed her as fast as my own, but the blood clot they found during the procedure would have killed her. If the clot had come dislodged while she was in NS, she would be left to die because of YOUR position in thinking it is ethically proper. 

A lot of hope has been placed on this treatment. I’m hopeful too, but
I realize we need to ensure appropriate trials are completed, and
evidence is available, before providing this treatment in Nova Scotia.
We have to ensure the treatment is safe for patients, and that it works.
We’re still quite early on in this process.

For the first time in 150 years, MS patients have been given hope. I agree, that nothing should be jumped into lightly especially when you are dealing with someone's life. With the attitude taken by the Neurological Societies being backed by the Health Minister's then the patients in this country will continue to suffer and die. The MS Clinics in this country have no desire to help the patients. Every trial they use try to prove or dis-prove the CCSVI theory, has been purposely designed to fail. 

The Neurological Societies are being blinded and do not see the hidden potential available to them. The purpose of the CCSVI treatment has never been to cure Multiple Sclerosis. The purpose of the procedure is to slow or stop the progression in hopes a cure may be found. The treatment is only part of the solution. Patients that have had the treatment still have MS. Whether they admit it or not. In time they will need help. 

With the attitude of some of the neurologists in the Halifax Clinic making comments such as, "Zamboni should have stuck to cleaning ice and not get into things he doesn't know.", to their patients, is beyond comprehension. What makes this doctor qualified to discredit another professional? This doctor is now finding out a valuable lesson. In sales, a cardinal rule is to never bad mouth a competitor. When you do, you will lose a customer. 

Yet some of the pompous neurologists are finding out that this is exactly what happens.

While I recognize the severity of the health crisis you face, it would
not be ethical for me to agree to provide a procedure that is not
accepted by the medical profession. 

Thank you for recognizing that I am going to die and that it is ethically right for you to let that happen. The procedure is already accepted by the medical profession or it would not be preformed in hospitals now. Your argument holds as much weight as any serial killer's argument. Denying someone the chance to live is criminal. 

Because of my worsening condition, I was not able to use the law to my full extend. Surprisingly, a week after secretly left the country to have the procedure done, I find now that I do have the energy as well as no longer fearing that I will be dead by Christmas as you intended. 

Having had the procedure done, I now know that we as patients need your help as well as the help of the MS Clinics more than anything. Because of this need, I have no choice but to remove my personal vendetta against you for trying to kill me. For now.

Thank you for writing to me and advocating on behalf of MS sufferers in
Nova Scotia.

Yours truly, 

Maureen MacDonald

My initial correspondence to you was not advocating for all MS patients. It was a compassionate request which you ignored. Now I am advocating for everyone else. Other patients, friends, and even strangers made it possible for me to continue living. These, unlike the politicians in our government stealing from us as taxpayers, are not rich people. They can not afford to help pay $10-20,000 for a procedure that could be done here for less than $5000. But they have helped me and I am helping them. This is just a small taste of what we as patients have planned for you and your party. 

As you are reading this now, people are looking through the financial records of you and your party members. We as patients have found out how much the MS Clinic neurologists get in perks from the pharmaceutical companies. Now we will find out how much our elected officials get for taking such a stance in their contributions. Recently the largest petition to ask for help was presented to the House. You and your party have ignored every request for help. Not surprisingly not one member in your party can look an MS patient in the eye. 

You have the power to correct this. We have solutions. The longer you wait, the more embarrassing this will be for everyone but the patients. According to the statistics, over 125 people have been treated in this province so far and all will improve. That is more than enough for a trial. To date, we can identify at least 5 more patients in this province that will not live a year. I already know that you are prepared to murder these patients. I'm not prepared to let you do that.

A simple solution is for you to meet with me. I may bring a doctor, or another patient, to verify my findings. All I ask is you bring your experts and let us give our position. It can be called a debate, or a lesson, or even a focus group. Call it what you will, it will be the truth. I have asked that a media personality be involved to act as mediator if need be, as you can see from my reply, I am not hiding anything from anyone.

We have the information you and your experts need to hear. Having you both together at the same time will stop you from saying it is up to the Experts, and the head of the Halifax Clinic saying it is up to you.

As the Minister of Health, this is your call. I am hoping you make the right decision soon, at least before the movie comes out. One point to keep in mind, I will not let any politician get away with murder including a Minister of Health. 

I will include your email address and phone number in case any of your constituents might like to also let you know you should take advantage of this opportunity.

My warmest regards and awaiting your speedy reply.

Contact Information:
Honorable Maureen MacDonald (NDP)
Nova Scotia Minister of Health

(902) 455-2926
(902) 424-3377 
1-800-387-6665 (toll-free in Nova Scotia)



Sunday, November 28, 2010

Here I Am and This is What I Think of CCSVI

Wow.. it is hard to believe that a week ago today I celebrating by eating steak and lobster in New York State. Of course the reason for celebrating was the fact that I was actually eating the steak and lobster and not trying to force another Ensure into me. For me, drinking an Ensure is no different than trying to gag down that glow-in-the-dark shit they give you for x-rays.

So how does it happen? How does one go from the hobbling dead to eating steak and lobster?

I am still trying to figure that out. It never could have happened without the help of amazing friends, family and even strangers that I will never know nor be able to repay. My family and I can never thank them enough. But just to say I had help and leave it as that is the ultimate in understatements. My trying to stay alive was a logistical nightmare that I would never have survived on my own. My problems were never just about trying to raise funds.

So, before we go any further... 1 year ago I wrote that CCSVI was not a cure but was a key. I stand by that.

Now for the parts of the story you didn't get. Fundraising efforts were started long before a location was found in hopes that they would never be needed. We did hope that our Health Minister Maureen MacDonald would have done the right thing, but instead it became obvious it would be in her best interest if I was dead. A person with a rapid progression cannot prove if the progression can be stopped if they are dead. But, instead of letting herself be known as the heartless person she is, she ignored my requests for a compassionate intervention as well as ignored any request to speak with me. The stress took it's toll.

I was down and I was out and I was ready to give up, but of course friends and family don't let you do that. I was literally doing everything I could to stay out of that wheelchair as I knew that if I landed there, it would have been the end. With no hope from my own government I had to concede to travelling. Having a need for Cannabis makes it very hard to just go off to foreign countries. As you scoff at the word 'need' in reference to Cannabis, that will be explained later.

And the nightmare begins. The ideal location of course would be with Dr. Siskin in Albany, NY. (No offense.. I am sure other Dr.'s are great... but having  fatal form of MS with one chance.. I want the one with the most practice.) The problem with NY is they have this problem understanding that Cannabis is actually a medicine and shouldn't be a cash cow for organized crime like the DEA. Of course, I could just show up, and buy some crap off the street paying way more than it's worth, but then it would have to be processed. Any other state and this would not be a problem as I think I probably know someone in every legal state that makes a similar recipe.

So we tried to get an appointment fitted in somewhere in a legal state on a rush basis. Then it happened, a combined effort on about 20 different fronts from both doctors and patients resulted in a Clinic having staff that are compassionate book four serious patients for a Saturday. OK, it cost us an extra $1000 to pay that staff's extra day of compassion, but we figure it makes a great Xmas bonus and it is still more compassionate than our country. Everyone does a happy dance because instead of months to wait we have only have a few weeks.

The only real issue, it is with Dr. Siskin's clinic in Albany, NY. The dream suddenly took a turn for the worse. Until a friend came through. And this friend had a friend who had a friend who knew what I needed. And if I am ever questioned... I believe that list has about 4000 names of friends of friends to go through. So needless to say, the "Tooth Fairy" met me on arrival which allowed the nightmare to again be a dream and we will just leave it as that.

So, knowing that I was pushing myself and the fact that I had realized what happens to almost every other patient about two weeks before the procedure, I went for downtime. A relapse would have killed me and the stress was there. It was time to hide and I hid pretty well. I did a great job of avoiding the stress. Then, two days before we are to secretly fly out to NY, I get an email from Maureen herself. I took the email as an attack to cause more stress to my already compromised system. Then I smoked a joint and had a nap thinking how pissed she would be in a few days. No stress means no stress. That email is a blog in itself and is coming soon.

We arrived in Albany last Friday night. Had a quick meeting. Then checked into our hotel. It was nothing special but was ideal for an interview. About an hour or so later the room was full of cameras and people. We shot interview footage until about midnight. I may have said some not nice things about our Health Minister, that will hopefully make it into the movie. Because I am such a nice guy.

Saturday was procedure day! I was pumped. I had a few hours sleep. I was medicated. And I was curious. I went in with no expectations. I was curious. I wanted to know if I was right first and foremost. I also wanted to know if there would be changes I would notice. I figured it would be pretty easy since I only have about a million different symptoms. Plus, I had my little brother with me, worse case scenario he could carry me. It was a half mile and we walked. It was slow, painful, and extremely tiring. But I made it. Barely.

On the way in we grabbed a prescription waiting for me at the drugstore, then did the paperwork and hesitantly handed over an exorbitant amount of money up front. I would never even give a dealer that much money up front. So off to the procedure. I had to change into a dress but got a really cool pair of socks that will now be hung up on my wall. Got to pop a couple Valium from the prescription then laid back and waited.

Now, one thing I did not do was medicate before I went for the procedure. I did this on purpose to see how good this whole CCSVI hype was. That may have been an unseen mistake as I did not realize that I would be perfectly flat as long as I was. That makes a bad back very bad, but the Valium kept them laughing. All the staff were great and we were having a ball. But, they were still having much more fun than I was. The catheter is placed inside the groin, the feeling is very similar to that of a vasectomy. Speaking from experience.

Now it is my understanding that you can not feel the catheter as it is being moved through your body. Or should I say I WAS under that impression. I now know this to be false. In fact, they didn't believe me until I started telling them when they were stopped or going around turns. This actually just feels like pressure. But, if you can feel that, then you will feel the next part. They then inflated the vein 500 times it's diameter. Probably not, but then again. I kinda of lost count of how many times. I do know at one point they were wiping sweat off me and there was a lot of apologizing. I am still waiting for the official reports to be mailed, but I count 5 areas of stenosis on the images they gave me.

After the procedure is not much fun. You have to still lay flat on your back. And by this time they know you enough that they just smack your head back down every time you lift it. I have dents now. So for an hour you lay and stare at the ceiling wondering if anything is different. Especially since you don't feel any different than you did before the treatment. Then it comes time. Now of course because you are medicated they make sure they help you to your feet in case you may be dizzy. I figured what better way to test it.

I asked the tech to let go of my arm and for the first time in 4 years I never moved wobbled or even teetered, with my eyes closed. So I stood on one foot, then the other with my eyes open and closed and said "Okay, I'm fixed we can go home now." I had balance and I had energy. I also thought I had strength that I now know was nothing more than adrenaline. After I got dressed we headed out. We got tired of waiting for a cab at an empty building so we walked back to the hotel. It was great. Less than a couple hours out of surgery and I am walking better and faster than I have in years. We grabbed a coffee and a donut on the way back for the next test.

I found out quickly that while the pain stopping me from eating and drinking was not gone it had lessened greatly. Then I also realized that I had also missed some medicine. It worked. We went to dinner and I ate. I also did not eat all the food in the picture. I also did not drink all of the beer. But I did eat and drink and it was great. We spent the rest of the time walking. Pretty much everywhere like the mall all day Sunday.

Monday morning I still got up at 5 which is 4 in NY time so I lazed until we walked back to the clinic for the follow up ultrasound. All went great. So great we walked back by way of a giant Target store. Then back to the hotel to pack and get ready to leave. The flights were on time, it just sucked coming home so late at night in such bad weather. Friends and family met us there with cookies but because the weather was so bad we never got a chance to really visit or even say hi in some cases. (Sorry Crystal's dad.) So we all braved our way home in the storm. I am not even sure what time it was when Yvonne dropped us off at the car in Truro, but I crawled into bed at about 3.

I think the flu hit sometime late Tuesday afternoon or early evening. I do know by 11 Chrissy was ready to call 911. Since then, I have been recovering from the flu. Now that that is over I can start recovering from the CCSVI. Then I can start recovering from the MS. The recovery process will just take time and a lot of work.

I already know what it is going to take for recovery and I had started the recovery process over a year ago.

To put it as simply as possible. Dr. Zamboni's theory states that blood trapped in the brain causes iron deposits left behind causing the immune system to attack. The CCSVI procedure uses balloon angioplasty or in worst case stents to correct deformities in the Jugular and or Azygos veins. The increased blood flow allows proper drainage from the brain thereby stopping the progression. Or does it?

More than one doctor will admit that I am only alive because Cannabis is a vasodiltor. Meaning it allows for more blood flow through the veins. The CCSVI procedure should then correct that blood flow for me to no longer need to use Cannabis. Or so one might think.

The catheter used feels like it is about four feet long. It's diameter is slightly smaller than the actual vein to allow it to travel. When the vein comes to a branch that is a smaller diameter, it has no choice but to be bypassed. This means that the only stenosed veins that can be treated are the bigger ones.

I have always maintained that people will still have MS after the procedure and they will still have symptoms and may even progress in disability over time. They will also need follow up care. I didn't say this because I just pulled it out of the air one day. I say this by watching others and using common sense.

If one has an easily seen stenosis in a large vein such as the Jugular or the Azygos, it only stands to reason that smaller veins will also be stenosed. If these smaller vein cavities can not be reached by way of catheter, they will continue to cause progression and symptoms. My greatest concern of having the procedure was the effects of a vasodiltor such as Cannabis being used with stents. This apprehension was in not knowing the mechanics of the plant. Luckily, I had a doctor with the same concern who was able to do some checking for me. Most vasodiltors work by weakening the vein wall, while Cannabis does nothing to the actual vein. Cannabis relaxes the muscle surrounding the vein allowing for proper blood flow making it probably the safest vasodiltor. And that is why your eyes get red when you smoke a joint.

As I have stated before, Cannabis was not approved for MS in Canada because patients said it worked, it is here because they proved it. At the time, no one knew how or why it worked, just that it worked. I wanted to know why. As well, since the US Department of Health patented Cannabinoids as an anti-oxidant as well as a neuroprotectant, it only makes sense to use the medicine they suggest for someone with a neurological disorder brought on by a problem with oxidized blood in the brain.

Until technology advances to be able to correct the deformities that will be in the smaller veins, people will continue to have MS.

I will stand behind Dr. Zamboni's theory as a needed start to treating Multiple Sclerosis by correcting the major areas of concern. And until I can be proven wrong (not likely), I will stand behind my theory that the ingestion of whole plant Cannabis will be needed to correct the smaller areas of concern allowing for a much better quality of life. But better yet, this combined treatment will offer life instead of misery followed by death.

Thank you all that helped keep me alive this far. Now it's up to me to keep it going.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Playing the Odds

In the very near future I will be embarking on yet another adventure. This isn't new to me since my entire life has been nothing but one adventure after another. I have to admit that I have done some pretty cool things over the last 48 years and of course not all of them could be considered sane. But regardless how close I have come to death, it never happened and I had fun.

This adventure is different. Instead of risking my life by cave diving off Cyprus or watching a polar bear eat a seal, this adventure is suppose to save my life. The only thing is, we don't know if it will work or not.

The disrupted blood flow theory in Multiple Sclerosis patients isn't new. It has been published before. The problem was there was never a way to prove it. Along comes Dr. Zamboni from Italy after proving he could identify and repair the blood flow anomalies providing relief for patients. He then did what very few doctors are willing to do. He made it public.

Any doctor that brings forth information that radically changes the way medicine is perceived is subject to career ending ridicule if he is proven wrong. But to have a doctor bring it to the public and then stand behind it with such conviction is nothing but amazing. Dr. Zamboni didn't do this for personal gain, he didn't even do it out of compassion for others suffering. He did it out of love for his wife.

In my research, I had seen the theory in passing but didn't really look into it again until the W5 episode that is now basically destroying the Neurological Societies of the world. My reasoning was pretty simple, I had a fatal form of the disease with a short prognosis. I needed some proof. My efforts in using high doses of cannabis were proving effective at helping to slow the progression, but were by no means stopping the damage from happening. If anything it was proving to repair previous damage better than actually slowing the progression.

The problem was getting the proof that Dr. Zamboni's theory would work. Knowing that clinical trials would take years that I didn't have, I needed to try a different approach. I ran my own unofficial clinical trial. I used my friends, my friends friends, and complete strangers. I was asking some of the strangest questions, but I was getting answers. Finding the information proved to be very easy thanks to social networking as everyone was posting their stories of success.

Except I was looking for the failures. I had far more questions for people that were unhappy with the procedure than I had for the success stories. By July, I had started to see a trend where patients were actually falling into three groups. A very small group of patients that said they felt worse,  a slightly larger group that found no blatantly noticeable improvements, and the biggest group of patients that were doing much, much better after the treatment.

I watched videos, read blogs and posts that numbered in the thousands. I educated myself. All while planning for my own death. Every morning I woke up would start with wondering if this would be the last. I fought back. I fought against pain and fatigue. I didn't always win every battle, but I never gave up the war. My reasoning for continuing is really the same as Dr. Zamboni's. What most people don't know is that Chrissy and I have only had one healthy year together. A year after moving in together we find out that I am going to die, but before that happens, I get to suffer.

The problem is that it isn't just the patients that suffer. Everyone gets to share in the pain. I've had to miss family functions and birthdays, holidays and friends weddings. I have had to miss Lily's school concerts and playing in the sun. Going to the beach is a thing of the past. Then throw in the odd mood swing and life becomes a living hell for everyone.

I have been prepared to die for a long time now. What I am not prepared for is living. I figure I have one crack at pulling this off. I am a realist, I know the outcome of not having the procedure. But, I also have to look at the future if it does stop the progression. No matter how you look at it, I will still be sick. My body has basically gone through about 30 years of disabling progression in the last 4 years. I now have a hard time recognizing old injuries from disease damage which is going to also hamper my recovery.

I have to regain strength and balance. I will need to reteach muscles to work properly again and I may never be able to walk without a cane. But I need to get better as I will have no choice but to eventually go back to work to be able to afford my recovery. On top of all of this, I also have to figure out how to afford to fix four years of teeth shattering seizures. And there is no one I love more than a dentist.

But giving up would be too easy and I never get to take the easy way. I need this procedure to work. For the last four years because of this disease, I have watched Chrissy risk her own health for me while family members who will never be forgiven treated us like garbage. I came into this relationship with full intentions of me taking care of her. Not the other way around. I know I will never be able to repay her but I at least want to try. She really has kept me going this far so it would be pretty selfish of me to let her down.

Of course the real bonus of this procedure isn't me living, it's proving that the treatment stops the progression. Simply put, if I live a year after the procedure, then it will have stopped the progression enough to make my form of MS no longer fatal for anyone. If my friends and I also get better faster than others because of our follow up treatment plans, then even less will suffer in the future.

Best of all, if it works, it will allow me to have the energy I need to make sure no other patients suffer from this disease again. No animal should have to endure what I have been put through. Actually, no animal suffers like this because "humane and compassionate" people put them out of their misery. We aren't that lucky. As patients we have no one in our corner fighting for us. We are doing it ourselves. As more and more patients get treated and start recovering, they too are joining the ranks against the Neurological Societies and politicians.

I am playing the odds. I know this, but I plan on being on the winning end. I am already planning my battles for the new year. I may be going into this with a 50/50 chance, but I am smart enough to plan for a good outcome since the bad outcome is taken care of.

I am also glad that I did my homework, one thing I noticed very quickly with people going to get the procedure, stress is bad. Yes I know all stress is bad, but did you know that very few people that have gone through fundraising and wait times for clinics got away without a relapse within the last two weeks before the procedure? Check it out and see how bad some of them get. I know this and prepared for it. Other than going to a fundraiser on the weekend, I am pretty much booked to be in bed avoiding stress at all costs until my appointment.

Hang in there folks.. I will be back to fight for everyone else soon.