MS Appeal

Aziz Helou had it all- handsome, intelligent, fit, a West Coast Eagles fanatic. The type of son any mother would idolise; now his own mum Raghda is heartbroken beyond words the Helou family devastated.

"We were happy family everything normal and now every day every moment we think about that diagnosis we think about his treatment."

The son of Syrian refugees, Australian born Aziz was diagnosed 6 months ago with the rarest most aggressive and debilitating form of Multiple Sclerosis the lifelong auto immune disease that leaves sufferers physically disabled and wheelchair bound.

24 year old law student hurtling towards total disability, documenting his daily struggle in a video diary.

Powerful medication failing to prevent Aziz having so called MS attacks which leave lesions on his brain. While most MS sufferers have an MS attack every 5 years Aziz has one every 6 weeks, his sight and right side already affected, upon diagnosis he had 14 lesions on his brain now he has 20 time is of the essence.

Before he declines further Aziz is desperate to undergo a stem cell transplant to halt the disease and restore his health.

MS neurologist Associate Professor Helmut Butzkueven says Aziz urgently needs the procedure whereby patients' stem cells are harvested from their blood then their immune system is blasted with chemotherapy to eradicate the MS.

The harvested stem cells are then reinjected, re booting the immune system within a week a new MS free immune system is born. "It's not a treatment which is needed by the vast majority of MS patients in fact for most of them it would be just dangerous even potentially fatal but for the rare people with bad relapsing remitting MS not controlled by any of our standard treatment this is the right treatment I'm convinced."

While the treatment is being trialled in Australia it's only available to a select few and with Aziz deteriorating quickly he simply can't wait. His best option is to fly to either Germany or Sweden where the procedure is mainstream but expensive, "this treatment comes at a big price tag of $200,000 combined costs and unfortunately we don't have those funds."

Aziz's big brother Abdul and father Bashar hanging on to hope, "without the treatment is either one of 2 things a wheelchair and a miserable life or no life at all."

Transplant surgeons in Sweden and Germany have agreed to operate on Aziz but the $30,000 raised so far is not enough.

What would your plea be to the Australian public? "Help me that's all it is really, help me or if you can't donate pray for me."

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