Saturday, March 19, 2011

How Many Have To Die Canada?

With the current rate at 400 per year in Canada, an average of just over 1 patient dies every day in this country as a result of Multiple Sclerosis. On a grand scale, that doesn't mean much, unless you look around the room right now as you read this and select one person you love. Now imagine that person dieing a horribly violent death after years of suffering needlessly. Death from Multiple Sclerosis is not like death from a heart attack. It is a slow, painful, debilitating disease with death usually resulting from organs being shut down by damage done to the nervous system.

Today was Bill's turn. Although we had never met, Bill is my brother. Not biologically or even by choice, but because we were forced to endure our pain and suffering. Bill's wife applied to the same heartless Health Minister to plead for a compassionate request to save Bill's life, like like my family and I did. And again she refused. Out of pure luck, I was able to be treated, proving in fact that this procedure will save your life, to now have to live with the death of Bill that could have been easily prevented.

For months, thousands of people with Multiple Sclerosis in this country have been screaming about the deplorable inactions of our elected officials with their "wait and see" approach to allowing venoplasty on MS patients. Nova Scotia Health Minister Maureen MacDonald (NDP), has taken inaction and turned it into murder. Twice now she has denied legitimate compassionate requests to save lives. Both times she denied them in hopes that they would die forever leaving the question unanswered of whether it would work or not.

William Peart's death this morning and my being able to write this now, prove that it could have worked. It has also proven to the people of Nova Scotia that this elected official that is supposed to have our best interests at heart, only cares for her own personal agenda. She made a choice and chose to let Bill and I die. I fought back, because we all have choices.

Bill's family now has the choice to pursue legal action against Maureen MacDonald for a wrongful death. I will gladly hand over the paperwork I have as I didn't like the thought of my family having to do it all. So I did it before I died.

The people of Nova Scotia have the choice of calling for an election, removal due to conflict of interest, or have the the Nova Scotia Attorney General do the right thing and file charges against Ms. MacDonald.

Sadly, Bill didn't get to have a choice. Maureen MacDonald took that away. So while Bill is watching over us that continue to suffer, we can only be comforted at the thought that he no longer has to. His family are now still forced to suffer knowing that the one person that could have saved his life, refused.

Of course Ms. MacDonald can also make another choice, but the intelligent one for her and her party now would be to allow the procedure once and for all in this province, quietly resign her position, and move very, very far away.

Our province's elected officials have been caught stealing from our public coffers and now our Health Minister commits murder. How many more have to die?

Friday, March 11, 2011

It's Time for Answers

Bill and Donna Peart live in Nova Scotia. Bill has has fought hard and suffered with Multiple Sclerosis for 16 years. Now the disease is winning. Bill even has an appointment outside the country to get the CCSVI treatment that will undoubtedly save his life. Sadly, this appointment is over a month away and Bill can no longer travel.

Appeals again sent to the Nova Scotia Minister of Health to save his life were like mine met with the same basic response. She would rather let him die a painful death. The part she doesn't realize is that some of the people getting this treatment are now again returning to the work force, paying the taxes that are keeping her employed.

Bill is now unable to eat and is looking at a feeding tube to pump food directly into his stomach. Because I have been there, I can tell you now as this disease progresses he will ask to be euthanized to end his torture. That also will be denied. Remember you are allowed to put down an animal to keep it from suffering but humans are forced to endure it because of stupidity. Donna and the rest of Bill's family will also be forced to endure this torture as well without ever knowing why.

I cannot comprehend how someone could display so much intelligence to be put into such a powerful position, yet is making such an asinine decision. There is no logical reason for her to do this unless she has a hidden agenda. So I have asked her boss, Nova Scotia Premier, Darrel Dexter.  I suggest everyone else do the same. Let's see if they have the balls to be honest or continue to be murderers hiding behind a thin veil of political bullshit.

Dear Mr. Premier,

By now I am sure that you as well as the rest of the people in this province realize that your Party made a grevious error with your selection for our Minister of Health.

Your selection for our Health Minister has just condemned another taxpayer in this province to death. The first person was me and that is yet to be dealt with. I have my death sentence in writing that states that her reply to me was only to appease you. Fortunately for me with the help of many friends and being forced to break a few laws, I was able to be successfully treated and am still alive. 

Last night CTV news reported that your Health Minister is going to force Bill Peart, another patient with MS, to die. This patient is no longer able to travel, meaning he can't even take the risk that I took. His only option will now be to suffer and die to only add another nail to your political coffin.

There is no logical reason to deny this treament in Nova Scotia other than to further a corporate agenda. The NDP is all about taxes in this province, so let me enlighten you to what the 3000 people with MS and their friends and family know and are teaching your voters.

People in this province on fixed incomes can not afford to live here because our taxes are higher than anywhere else and we are provided less services. The amount of taxes that are collected and handed over to the Department of Health is exorbatently deplorable. The current average cost that MS patients in this province face is upwards to $50,000 per year in medications. The average lifespan of someone using these drugs might be at best 20 years. This is paid for by you from us and we have 3000 patients.

The cost to do one angioplasty treatment on one MS patients would be less than $5000. Even if this treatment needed to be performed every 6 months, it would still be a considerable savings while offering an improved quality of life for the patient and their family. This alone would be a major win for the rest of the province as taxes could be lowered and I could stop doing all of my shopping in NB. We save approximately $150.00 per shopping trip by driving 10 minutes out of the province.

There are very little risks to this treatment and it is proving to be more and more effective every day. The only risk has been political inaction and the refusal by Canadian doctors, including to myself, to have proper aftercare. Simply put, you could actually save lives and a lot of money by just doing the "right" thing for the people of this province. We aren't asking for this to be etched in stone that every MS patient will get this treatment. All we want is to be able to make our own informed choices. We can't do that if your Health Minister is mis-informed by the very people that stand to lose the most.

You can fix this and possibly save your Party in the process. The Health Minister is refusing to take a risk in fear that something bad might happen. This is recified by having Mr. Peart and his family sign a waiver assuming all risk in the unlikely event that something should happen. If there is a cost associated that the Province does not want to cover, I am more than sure that Mr. Peart and his family with the help of friends could cover that. The procedure could be done in Halifax by a vascular surgeon such as Dr. Patrick Casey who has staff trained in the procedure. If Dr. Casey had any misgivings about performing the procedure, I am more than sure we could get an expert such as Dr. Sandy MacDonald to be on site with a simple invitation.

The pay off for this is that Bill's wife and family will get to enjoy his new found quality of life along with him and not have to watch him suffer to his enevitable end, while you and the Nova Scotia NDP party become the country's hero instead of the disgrace it has become. Or your could ignore us as we have become accustomed to and be willing to commit murder along with your Health Minister.

For months I have been racking my brain to figure out why our Health Minister would take such an inane stance that would cause people to suffer and die. I can only come to one conclusion and I will ask it right out, because you know we will find out regardless.

Mr. Premier, is your Health Minister Maureen MacDonald or any other party member receiving incentives to keep this procedure from happening in Nova Scotia? I can see no other logical reasoning for this treatment to be denied just in the impact to quality of life and savings in taxpayers monies. The people suffering in this province deserve to know the truth.

Maureen MacDonald has solely removed the title of Honorable from the position of Minister of Health by committing the most dishonorable acts imaginable to the people of Nova Scotia.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Things You Probably Don't Know About Multiple Sclerosis (and maybe shouldn't)

People die every day from MS. It's true. The reason you don't hear much about these deaths is because of semantics. When you are diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis it is considered an incurable disease. When you die, an autopsy may or may not be preformed. Regardless, the outcome is the same, once you are labeled with MS, it doesn't matter if the neurological damage stops your heart from beating or your intestines close up not allowing food in, death will always be listed as "Died of Natural Causes." Therefore the claim that MS rarely kills is a blatant lie, everyone with MS will die, the aggressiveness disease just dictates how fast it will kill you.

No one know what causes MS, or how it actually functions. Over the last 150 years, there have been two theories that are completely unrelated from two different branches of medicine. The original theory is that MS is a disease caused by vascular malformations blocking or disrupting blood flow from the brain allowing the blood to oxidize leaving trace elements of iron in the brain causing neurological damage. The second theory to emerge is that MS is an auto-immune disease. Meaning for some unknown reason the body's immune system starts to attack the insulation called myelin that covers the nerves. Neither are correct nor are they wrong, although this last year has proven some remarkable headway into the vascular side with the use of venous angioplasty by clearing obstructions and relieving some symptoms and possibly slowing or stopping progression.

Multiple Sclerosis is one of the hardest known diseases to accurately diagnose. The disease can have over 50 different symptoms associated that can come and go at anytime. Symptoms can be as minor as a small patch of itching skin to a suicidal level of pain. Symptoms may persist for weeks or months, then suddenly stop for years. Also making diagnosis difficult are the number of other disorders that mimic many of the MS symptoms. These include Lyme Disease, ALS, stroke, as well as many others. Therefore the diagnosis criteria is a nightmare as you first need to rule out all the other disorders it could be.

It is said that women are more than double than that of men in having MS. This I also don't think is entirely accurate. This is more likely due to mindset. Males of our species grow up with a slightly different doctrine than our female counterparts. "Suck it up and be a man." As children we are taught not to whine about minor aches, pains, or discomforts as it may show a sign of weakness. I myself went for years with my hands falling asleep every time I tried to hold on to a vibrating steering wheel. I ignored it. It got worse.

For the most part, MS patients are the biggest liars in the world. They will try to walk, talk, and act normal just like everyone else. At least in the beginning. This is not a bad thing. It is only bad that they try to hide what is happening to them in an effort to appear normal to others. The good thing is that they also hide it from their loved ones. MS patients also have very evil thoughts when they hear the words, "Well you look so good", or "Maybe you just need some rest." Another lie that is hard to get them to admit to is wishing their disease on anyone else. It happens. It really is okay to be yourself now. They no longer lock us up in insane asylums for having this disease like they used to.

MS patients get called names. Unfortunately, most of the name calling comes from friends and family members and starts even before you are diagnosed. I hear that in some instances, the name calling stops after the diagnosis, but not in my case, so I just take that as a rumor. Some of these names will be "lazy", "useless", "hypochondriac" and many more.

Every person with MS has an "expert" that knows exactly what they need. Again this is usually friends and family and sometimes it can be very contradictive. You should eat this or not eat this. You need to exercise, you need to rest more. The best thing to do is tell these experts to "shut up and leave you alone". The information they provide is useless to you and you won't get in trouble for being mean to them. (This is covered below with "mood swings.")

The scariest aspect of MS is that any part of the body that is controlled by nerves (try to find one that isn't) can be affected. Imagine if you will that the meylin sheath covering the inferior anal nerves and or the inferior hemorrhoidal nerve becomes damaged.  It can happen. These nerves are extremely important in the human body as they are the nerves that distinguish the difference between a fart and a poop. Nothing more needs to be said. 

The medications they give us are actually doing more harm than good in most cases. A lot of the chemicals used in our medications are classified as carcinogens. The side effects of these medications can actually be worse than the disease and yet have never been proven to be effective. In some cases, these drugs actually caused the deaths of patients during clinical trials, yet are still approved. For example, one well known MS drug therapy for some reason also contains very high concentrates of phosphorous which actually causes neurological damage on top of liver and kidney damage.   

The number one drug that has proven time and time again to be most effective is illegal for MS patients everywhere in the world, except Canada. Since Canada has the highest incidents of MS in the world, this is good for Canadians, but sucks for everyone else. Health Canada has approved cannabis for MS patients. Of the 60 known medicinal compounds in cannabis, over half can be directly beneficial for symptom relief and disease management. Some of these benefits are from the CBD's in the plant that act as vasorelaxants, antispasmodics, neuroprotectives, and analgesics. It works and there is no chance of overdose.

 As a patient you will also be called and treated with two new nanes. Guinea pig and cash cow. Doctors will provide you with experimental medications in an effort to make you feel better while making them more money. The drug therapies that are approved for MS have a very high price tag. The newer therapies are costing $50,000 per year. This make an MS patient a very lucrative commodity. Because of the competition of other drug manufacturers, sales representatives resort to incentive programs for doctors and clinics that prescribe their medications. When your MS doctor suggests a medication that you refuse, he isn't getting mad because you don't believe it will work, he is mad because he is making nothing off you. 

 You would also think that a person with MS would have a place to turn for help. Sadly, this is also not true. Each country has a Multiple Sclerosis Society in one form or another. These organizations collect donations and do fund raising in the hopes of one day finding a cure. Their executive positions are very well paid careers. The majority of the money they collect goes to administration costs. The majority of the rest is used for advertising, and donations to pharmaceutical research in the form of grants. The last thing they would ever want is a cure for MS. For them to say otherwise is a lie as a cure means they will be unemployed. With the remarkable results by using angioplasty on MS patient's veins, you would think the MS Societies of the world would be embracing this as the most remarkable advancement in 70 years for MS patients. Sadly, evidence is showing that the societies sat on and deliberately hid a neurologists paper written in the 1970's that stated MS is vascular in nature and could be corrected. The societies' new tactic if you question this on their online forums, you will be banned and the question deleted. Ignoring the truth does not make it go away.

Having MS is not the end of the world. You may wish for it at times, but it really isn't. You can also have a lot of fun with your MS. My favorite saying when someone wants me to do something that I don't particularly care to do has become, "I'm sorry, I'll be sick that day." MS can get you out of anything including jury duty. Doing this is actually more beneficial for your health than you may think. The most common trigger for MS relapses and  flairs is stress. If you have to go to some function that you don't want to be at, you will become stressed. Stay home and your body will thank you for it. 

Although the cognitive impairments may prove to be disheartening and disturbing at times, you can still have fun with it. Especially if you have kids around. I myself successfully convinced a 10 year old that it is only logical to keep your liquid dish washing soap in the refrigerator. I still have no idea why I kept putting it in there. But I have a friend that keeps putting her laundry into the dishwasher. It happens, have fun with it.

You can also have a lot of fun with "mood swings" It is no wonder we get them. Our bodies and brains are wreaked with neurological damage. We are treated as outcasts and malingerers. With MS you can actually say all the things that you would never have said before because someone might think badly of you. So when you are standing in front of your doctor and he says something stupid, make sure you tell him so. Say what you want, when you want, and to who you want. If they don't like it and you feel bad, blame it on the mood swings, you can't help it as they are actually brought on by other people's stupidity. Plus keeping it bottled up in you just adds to the stress that is killing you. 

With an MS diagnosis you are given two choices. You have to decide which path to take. You can take the "curl up and die" attitude which would be just accepting that you are going to suffer and die, or you cling to that last hope that that pharmaceutical which is actually killing you faster, will eventually work. Or you can take the "fight back" attitude. This one may take a bit more effort but will be well worth it in the long run. This includes not listening to someone with a hidden agenda, researching information and double checking all that you find, and understanding your own disease. Then and only then, you will be able to make an informed decision on what form of treatment you want to attempt.

Guess which choice I took?