Neil lives with secondary progressive MS. He describes the impact that Sativex has had on his life, and why he’s supporting our new campaign ‘Approved but Denied’.
I have had MS for 32 years. I went away with friends for the weekend and developed double vision, so went to see a doctor at the eye hospital. He said he thought it might be MS, but wasn’t sure. Then, when I went out ten pin bowling, I fell and afterwards couldn’t walk. I felt paralysis moving across my body.
I saw a GP and talked about the possibility of MS – as it had been mentioned when I had the problems with my sight. I was referred privately, due to work health insurance, to a neurologist who put me on steroids and sent me for an MRI scan in Manchester.
I was diagnosed with relapsing initially, and then secondary progressive MS.
All my symptoms were getting worse
Before I started on Sativex all my symptoms were getting worse. I had spasms and muscle cramping every night. It was a case of when I would wake up not if. I hadn’t had a full night’s sleep in 10 years, and neither had my wife.
It was incredibly painful with my body trying to do things it really couldn’t do as a result of the spasms. I would often cramp into a foetal position.
I didn’t realise how tough it was until it stopped.
After starting on the Sativex I had the first good night’s sleep in 10 years.
I didn’t suffer with MS fatigue, but I hadn’t realised how much I was running on fumes due to a lack of sleep until I had some rest. I didn’t realise how tough it was until it stopped.
I usually take four doses a day. I can tell if I only have three. But I have a spray of Sativex and it gets rid of the spasms within 10 minutes.
Approved but Denied
Sativex has had a marked effect on my overall wellbeing – so it seems wrong that access is dependent on what postcode you happen to live in. That’s why I’m pleased to support the Approved but Denied campaign.