New PH Social Media Campaign Honors Deceased Patient to Help PHA

Patrícia Silva, PhD avatar

by Patrícia Silva, PhD |

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Maddy Hardman was a 20-year-old with pulmonary hypertension (PH) who died unexpectedly due to the disease. On December 29, 2015, Maddy Hardman succumbed to the progressive damages caused by the disease to her heart and lungs. Now, her life is being honored through a new social media campaign that also aims to raise awareness about the disease and funding to fight it.

Kate Jones and Maddy Hardman became friends at the St. Albans Girls School (STAGS), in St Albans, Hertfordshire, UK. Kate Jones started the new campaign after realizing that pulmonary hypertension can go unnoticed for years and how unpredictable the disease is. Kate Jones is asking everyone to post a photo on their social media networks wearing pink, using the hashtags #pinkformaddy and #poutforph.

“I was looking through old photos from five years ago when Maddy and I were on the school trip with STAGS and it came to mind that Maddy even then had symptoms of PH, but it was yet to be diagnosed. Thinking back to it now, Maddy couldn’t walk to the top of a waterfall like the rest of the group because of shortness of breath. Everyone dismissed this symptom think Maddy was just unfit / asthmatic,” stated Kate Jones in an interview to The Herts Advertiser.

“I decided I needed to do something on social media to spread awareness of the symptoms of PH so people see these signs sooner and get the right diagnosis,” she added. By posting photos of themselves using the hashtags #pinkformaddy and #poutforph, with a description of PH symptoms and text donation details, people can both raise awareness about the condition and money for the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA).

While pink is not typically a color that represents pulmonary hypertension, Kate Jones also wanted to remember Maddy Hardman and her journey with the disease. “We wanted to make this personal to Maddy and the love for pink Maddy had- something everyone will remember Maddy by,” explained Kate Jones who has been able to raise £435 through text donations so far.

The description to be shared with each photo reads: “Raising awareness of pulmonary hypertension (PH), a serious condition where the blood pressure in the pulmonary arteries (the blood vessel delivering blood to the lungs from the right side of the heart) is high. This causes progressive damage to the heart and lungs. The main symptom of PH is breathlessness. Other symptoms may include dizziness, feeling faint, swelling of the feet or ankles, and chest pain (particularly during exercise). A secret killer, know the symptoms! To donate £3 towards Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) text ‘MADZ95 £3’ to 70070.”

Read the latest updates on pulmonary hypertension here.

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