Project No Shunts | Reebok Ragnar Northwest Passage
During my nephew Max's first trip to Seattle Children's Hospital when he was just two weeks old, our family received news that nothing could have prepared us for: In utero, a large fluid-filled cyst had grown in Max’s brain, which lead to the development of a condition called hydrocephalus. Hydrocephalus is caused by an imbalance in the production and absorption of cerebral spinal fluid in the brain which causes the ventricles to enlarge. The fluid accumulates causing the symptoms of hydrocephalus to appear. Max’s newly diagnosed condition was life-threatening, and the only option was to have a ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunt placed, via brain surgery, to drain the excess fluid. There are no words to describe how our family felt as Max was taken to surgery. To date, Max has been in the operating room twice to place two separate VP shunts on top of his head. His first VP shunt is responsible for draining his ventricles, while his second VP shunt is responsible for draining his cyst. Until a cure is found, his two shunts are considered permanent.
So, why is it important to share Max’s story? The reason: Shunts are not a cure and hydrocephalus receives considerably fewer federal research dollars per person than other chronic neurological conditions.
Project No Shunts: Friend and fellow ultrarunner Matt Campbell and I will be doing our part to create awareness and raise money by running Reebok Ragnar Northwest Passage on July 12-13, 2019 as a 2 person ultra team, a 200 mile journey from the Canadian border to Langley, WA on Whidbey Island. 100% of funds raised from this project will go directly to fund cutting-edge research into hydrocephalus – including exciting research being done locally at Seattle Children’s Hospital – and to provide support, resources, and advocacy to patients and families living with this condition. Since 2009, the Hydrocephalus Association has become the largest non-profit, non-governmental funder of hydrocephalus research in the U.S.
Our ask – We graciously encourage everyone that is financially able to DONATE to Project No Shunts by using the “Donate Now” button above. Every dollar counts!
Thank you, Brett & Matt
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