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Feeling Better …

Thanks again to everybody for all your kind wishes and inquiries about my health since the veinoplasty procedure in December. I know many of you know, or know of, someone living with MS, so I’m more than happy to share the latest developments of our harrowing, exciting journey.

As soon as two days post-surgery I experienced energy and strength not seen in years in my core and legs. It was quite remarkable, and rather hard to believe. Stephen saw it himself when we went on our first walk in over a year (I gave up walking when I couldn’t make it down our street). We stared at each other in amazement and laughed with excitement; it was strangely surreal.

Christmas was truly wonderful. I was able to enjoy the entire week with my family with unbounded energy and joy. My kids were so surprised and happy. What a gift!

In all my exuberance however, I must have overtaxed my body, because I caught a nasty cold. My newfound energy faded along with the exhilaration and hope.

With the cold mostly gone, I’m happy and relieved to report that the new strength is returning. Not as dramatic as that first week, but there are definite improvements in my gait, stamina and balance. I’m back on the treadmill, and slowly incorporating new exercises into my workout.

The MS is far from gone; the tactility and dexterity of my hands hasn’t improved and I still have fatigue — though not the old, debilitating, total exhaustion. I’m in no way as stable or strong as a ‘healthy’ person of my age — but that’s OK, this is far more than I expected. My hope was that the surgery would halt progression of the disease; at my late stage (eighteen years since diagnosis) I hadn’t even considered the possibility of improvement before this procedure. Every day I feel blessed having this opportunity for a better quality of life, even if it only lasts for a while.

Doctors don’t know the duration or extent of these improvements, assuming you’re fortunate to have improvements (not everyone does). They don’t understand much at all about this procedure, except that many people feel better and that there’s enough evidence to warrant further study. Some studies are already underway in the US and around the world — in pretty well every country except Canada. It’s too bad the MS Society of Canada and the Canadian government are lagging so pathetically behind. Liberal health critic Ujjal Dosanjh and fellow MP Dr. Kirsty Duncan launched a blistering attack on the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada in the January 4th edition of the Vancouver Sun, and there’s talk of a class-action lawsuit against them for both damages and criminal negligence, though no one has so far actually initiated this daunting task.

Nevertheless, the procedure is available, and it’s all because of one man — Dr. Paolo Zamboni, whose determination and love for his wife, who suffers from MS, may have finally begun to unlock the mystery of MS and provide relief to over two and a half a million desperate people.

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8 responses to “Feeling Better …”

  1. Diana

    Caroline,

    I don’t know you well but I think many of us have been touched by your beauty and grace. I feel very happy to hear this news. I hope you continue to find improvements in your health. My prayers are with you.

    Diana

  2. Diane Du Cap

    Dear Caroline,

    I find it amazing that you share these precious moment of your life to us.I am thankful that you cross my path and i could learn from you.May this new strength of energy stay with you for a very very long time.

    Diane

  3. Andrea Mühlebach

    Hello Caroline

    It is so good to hear of the first results of your surgery… and I hope that you experience further benefits and that they may last! You are truly a remarkable lady, and the way you are coping and dealing with MS is an inspiration for ma at other levels. Keep up your spirits and continue on your path… I wish you and Stephen all the best!
    Sincerely, Andrea Mühlebach

  4. Kathy Camozzi

    Hi Caroline,
    Thank you so much for sharing the whole of the experience with us. I am very happy for you and your family that you are experiencing relief from some debilitating symptoms.You must be pleased that you took the decision to go for the treatment.
    As you know, I have MS as well, After much study we decided to not go and I am still comfortable with that decision though i am envious to hear about your improvement.
    What a journey and how much easier it is to travel when we know we are not alone. Much love to you and Stephen. Kathy

  5. André Vézina

    Hi Caroline
    Nice to hear that you are feeling lot better following your treatment.
    Hope you get lasting benefits from it.
    Your shining personality and determination are like a bright star in the sky of life.
    Thanks and gratitude for sharing this part of your personal struggle with us.
    This allow us to better appreciate how lucky we are when we have good health.
    Best of all to you: Caroline, Stephen and your family.

    André

  6. mona

    I am so glad you experienced the boundless energy . I had undergone stem cell procedure in Israel and interestingly enough I too experienced energy, I stopped experiencing the weird off balance sensations I used to feel and was suddenly able to walk down flights of stairs without holding to a banister…
    However, during the xmas holidays and overextending myself; bang in January I suddenly started once again to feel the fatigue and lack of balance.
    Lets hope it is a temporary set back.
    It is really nice to read about your experience. Itruly wish you the best in the upcoming months for ongoing improvement.

  7. diane sprackett

    Hi Caroline,

    I was delighted to read your latest update and know that you have experienced some beneficial effects from the treatment.If a positive attitude could help anyone with MS you shine! That incredible fatique must be SO debilitating, so whatever relief you have in that area is a great plus, along with better balance. You truly are a wonderful model of coping with ones own pathway in life while observing other paths that seem much more appealing?! I wish you continued improvement and the inner strength to value what you are able to do. Remember the incredible inspiration you are to many, especially in your more fragile moments.
    Love to you, Stephen and your family.

    Looking fotward to seeing you in the Spring:)

    Diane

  8. Eric

    Wow it’s great to hear of your progress. In determination we find strength. All the best to you and Stephen.

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