Pulmonary Hypertension: Breathe for Jo
The only cure for pulmonary hypertension is a heart and lung transplant, however Jo is not a suitable candidate as she has cancer; therefore, the anti-rejection drugs, otherwise known as immunosuppressants that lower the body’s ability to reject a transplanted organ, would lower her immune system and rapidly speed up the cancer meaning that Jo would then die from lymphatic cancer.
In April 2015, Jo was given between two weeks and two months to live. Sadly Jo now has end-stage pulmonary hypertension, there is nothing else the UK’s National Health System (NHS) can do, they have sent her home to die. But despite being told by specialists in the UK, there is no hope Jo has far from given up. “I must stay alive for the sake of my little boy, I’m not scared of dying but the thought of him suffering because he has lost his mummy at such a young age terrifies me.”
After extensive research, Jo has finally found someone who can help, an Arizona-based scientist who works directly in line with some of the best medical Dr’s in the world. But, to make things even more difficult for Jo, she has now been told by her specialists that she is unable to fly, due to the altitude and cabin pressure. Jo has no choice but to travel by ship to New York City, then catch a sleeper train for three days across America to Chicago then another to Phoenix Arizona.
Specialists have informed us that pulmonary hypertension could be caused by a simple deficiency, a genetic mutation, a hormonal imbalance, but the NHS do not have the funds available to test Jo. They test mice that have been given pulmonary hypertension, but that’s not what happened to Jo, Jo’s PH came from somewhere, there is a fault in Jo’s system that is currently is killing her and needs to be identified.
However, following her trip to the States, she is already making great progress. After just a month she is no longer in a wheel chair and is able to walk over three miles! The Dr’s are without a doubt the best we have ever experienced.