Fundraiser for Lacombe diabetic

People with type 1 diabetes will closely watch what happens to one Lacombe woman who has had it all her life

People with type 1 diabetes will closely watch what happens to one Lacombe woman who has had it all her life.

Angela Walker, 33, was diagnosed with the auto-immune disease since childhood and is looking at a possible cure through stem cell regenerative therapy. Her mother, May Hollman, is organizing a fundraiser to help pay for the procedure, which is estimated to cost $100,000.

The procedure, conducted in Germany, takes neutral stem cells from unfertilized eggs to help regenerate tissues in the body, in this case Walker’s pancreas. Hollman heard about the procedure after meeting with a doctor in the United States. The cost was estimated at $250,000. “We wanted to do that but there’s no way we can raise that kind of money.”

Walker’s doctor in the United States spoke with physicians who administer the procedure in Europe; they reviewed her case and offered to come to the United States to conduct the first intravenous treatment. The second session will be held in Calgary.

Hollman believes the success rate is 90 per cent and feels her daughter would have a better way of life. Currently doctors are saying Walker will need to take dialyses but that is done three days a week for five hours each time.

This new procedure would not require anti-rejection drugs and would take three to nine months for the stem cells to work.

Walker had a brother, Bob Hollman, who also suffered from type 1 diabetes. He died December, 2011 after complications stemming from an accident in 2009. Hollman hopes to give her daughter another option to cure her diabetes.

Her therapy is planned for April 23 to 27 and to help pay for that Hollman is hosting a fundraiser at the Lacombe Memorial Centre April 12. Contact Hollman at 403-786-9041 or Heather at 403-3046163.