Doncaster mum's bid to raise £45,000 for brain surgery after 14-year pain battle

A Doncaster mum who has been battling ‘excruciating’ pain on a daily basis for 14 years has launched a bid to raise £45,000 to pay for vital brain surgery.

By Darren Burke
Thursday, 4th August 2022, 12:23 pm
Updated Thursday, 4th August 2022, 12:23 pm

Kate Mallinson, 45, is unable to hold her own head up and ‘desperately’ needs life-changing surgery to keep her alive.

She says she suffers pain from head to toe and said: 'I exist with no life.”

The mum to a ten-year-old boy suffers from a hereditary disorder which has left many of her body's connective tissues unable to do their job.

Kate Mallinson wants to raised £45,000 for surgery to help end her excruciating pain.

The surgery is not available on the NHS and costs £45,000 privately - money she says her family simply do not have.

She suffers with Elher-Danlos (better known as EDS) - a group of hereditary disorders that cause abnormal collagen function and affect the body's connective tissues. These connective tissues provide strength and flexibility to the skin, bones, blood vessels, and other internal organs.

Speaking about her pain, Kate said she has suffered pain in her face, head, and neck, extreme dizziness "with even slight head movement", daily nausea, vomiting, and a variety of other neurological symptoms, autonomic nervous system malfunction including controlling her temperature, swallowing problems, irregular heartbeat, POTS, Raynaud’s disease and Crohn’s disease.

Kate says she "desperately needs" craniocervical neurological surgery to be able to hold her own head up again. This surgery has only been performed 12 times in the UK and is said to have many risks.

Kate, whose friends say is being "suffocated" by this illness said: "I am not entering into this lightly; it is an essential operation, and my symptoms will only worsen, eventually leading to the severing of the spinal cord. I need it because the muscles and ligaments in my neck are not strong enough.

"Bone growth also impinges on my spinal cord at the bottom of my skull."

Speaking about her pain, Kate said: "Only close family and friends see the real impact of this daily excruciating pain on my life. I try hard to smile to hide the pain I endure all day and night; I cannot sleep.

"I am alone and scared, I ask myself, 'how will I get through another day?'. I live an existence, not a life.

"I am missing life as it goes on around me. I have missed so many special social events, weddings, Christmas parties, simple coffee and cake with friends, and a cup of tea at a friend’s house because I am laid in bed in pain, not daring to move my head because I will vomit.

"No one should have to live this life in such unbearable pain."

Kate is subjected to wearing a neck brace every day to be able to hold up her head and take pressure of her ligaments and muscles in her neck.

She added: "I try to keep smiling and trying to be the best mummy I can. I want to see my son grow up and enjoy some of his milestones with him, not from the side-lines with him telling me all about his ‘adventures’ when he gets home.

"I want to go for days out and enjoy time with my family and friends, and not stand at the door waving them off on their ‘adventures’ and saying ‘Have a nice time, see you when you get back'. I don’t ask for much in life.

"I just want to be pain-free and not be scared to move my head for fear of feeling so much pain and dizziness I vomit. My husband wants to be my husband, not my carer; my son wants his mummy to stop crying in pain, and be a mummy."

Her 10-year-old son said: "It breaks my heart to see my Mummy crying in pain so much, I sometimes can’t cuddle her because I might hurt her." Kate's parents said: "It is heart-breaking to be unable to ease it for her, we so need to get back our happy, bubbly daughter. Words are not enough, but we really thank you if you can help at all."

Kate's husband added: "I often wake in the night to my wife laying on the bathroom floor, inconsolable in pain, and vomiting, I hate that there is nothing I can do to take her pain away. I feel such helplessness that I can’t take away the horrific pain from the women I love; please help us and donate whatever you can."

"Please help me. I cannot afford to save my own life", pleads Kate. "I can’t explain how grateful I will be for any small donation received, and please help by sharing this message and my story on social media wherever and whenever you can."

You can donate to Kate’s appeal HERE