Rare brain illness mum’s call for help

A single mum with a rare brain disorder that leaves her in agony and unable to move is appealing for others with the illness to come forward.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 27th February 2014, 10:20 am

Tammy Nash, 30, suffers from idiopathic intracranial hypertension, or IIH – a medical condition with no known cause that creates excess fluid in the brain.

“It is like having my head in a vice and it being squeezed” said Tammy.

“The pain is in my neck, my shoulders, my back – I can’t move and the slightest noise and the dimmest light is too much to bear.”

Tammy – who was diagnosed in 2001 – is unable to work because of the illness, and relies on her daughter, 13, for care.

“Harleigh-Jade has been amazing” she added.

“She is registered as a young carer. If I need reminding to take my medicine or to go to appointments, she is there.”

Thanks to ten different medicines and a permanent tube running through her body to drain fluid from her brain, Tammy is able to function.

But there is no known cure for IIH, a condition that affects just one in 100,000 people.

She is now appealing for other people with the illness to contact her and help raise awareness.

“It is very lonely sometimes” she said. “It would be good to speak to somebody else about their experiences of IIH.”

Gill Yaz, health development manager from Shine – a charity that helps people with IIH, said: ‘IIH can last for many years, having a huge effect on people’s lives, with symptoms including debilitating headaches, nausea, dizziness, and depression.

“It can also lead to permanent visual loss.”

Do you know anyone with IIH? Contact [email protected]