Thu, 28 May 2015
108: The Lifelong Battle of Sarah Hughes with Systemic Juvenile Arthritis and How Stem Cells Improved her Quality of Life
Fiona Cunningham shared the lifelong battle of her daughter Sarah Hughes with her illness that started when she was still an infant. Sarah lived normally when she was born but not until she turned 6 months old that they noticed lymph nodes on her legs while she was sitting up and crawling. Her temperatures at that time was at its peak and she started to get some rashes too. Fiona was advised by her sister to bring Sarah to Mayo Clinic which at 11-months old, Sarah was fully diagnosed to have Systemic Juvenile Arthritis.
Sarah's life was generally at risk due to her illness. Her systemic nature started attacking her digestive system and made it difficult for her to eat. At that time, she was on two doses of chemotherapy, steroids and taking 23 drugs literally just to keep her alive but her body wasn't really responding to these treatments. Fortunately, Fiona was employed in the Arthritis Foundation to which she found out about Celltex and learned about stem cell treatments.
The decision to receive stem cell treatments, although not immediate, was an easier decision to make for Sarah. She had her first infusion on November 2014 of 600 million stem cells to which she received in Mexico. Prior to the stem cell infusion, Sarah was mostly at bed rest. However, 6 months after her treatment, she felt energetic and was able to eat food she had never eaten before.
Sarah's life after stem cell treatment has changed a lot and seeing her now has given hope for people with no hope.
Find out more about this inspiring journey of Sarah and her mother, Fiona.