Donna's accidental FND discoveryThe 51-year-old recalled experiencing epileptic symptoms since she was in school, but like the one in three people who suffer from epilepsy, Donna had yet to discover the disease she was confronting.
“I was watching a program on the SBS that was talking about FND, and I immediately thought maybe this is what I have,” Donna said.
“I booked an appointment with Doctor Alexander Len who diagnosed me with FND. There were very few specialists in Australia at the time.”
Functional Neurological Disorder (FND) is a condition characterised by neurological symptoms that cannot be explained by a known neurological disease or structural abnormality.
How FND impacts DonnaFND impacts everyone different. In fact, Donna knew someone who could only walk backwards.
Donna said her symptoms have changed over time and now requires support workers from Just Better Care to help her start and finish her day with dignity.
“If I get too stressed or try something new, my body freezes; I can't move any part of my body. Once I was stuck in a car for an hour,” she said.
“If doctors did an MRI, they would find nothing wrong with my brain. It's a really hard disease, but I’m doing everything I can to get back to walking.
Tailored support for Donna“I’ve been with Just Better Care for a while. The lovely ladies come in twice a day now, and help with literally everything from showering, meal preparation to getting dressed, feeding my dog Tilly and getting me to bed.”
Donna credits her support workers who make her try her hardest to participate in daily activities around the house before they step in.
“That makes me feel good, doing as much as I can do. Thank goodness for the ladies at Just Better Care. They work so hard and they’re like having another family.”
“It's a friendly face to see too. Otherwise, I'm stuck at home lots of the time alone.
Donna's number 1 goalFor 2023, Donna is determined to walk again so she can hike up her parents set of stairs and live as normal life as possible. Her weekly hydrotherapy class is helping her get closer to this goal.
“A step or two would make life so much easier.”
Please join us in sending Donna all the good luck coming her way in her mission to walk again.
Just Better Care provides tailored in-home aged care and disability support.