October 15, 2015 – This month over 200 participants gathered at Tribble Mill Park in Lawrenceville, GA and raised more than $18,000 to support a cause near and dear to their hearts, Hydrocephalus.
Hydrocephalus is a life-long condition with no cure and anyone at any age can be diagnosed. One of our own, Jen Taylor, works closely with this organization to spread awareness and help eliminate the challenges of living with Hydrocephalus.
Hydrocephalus, pronounced (Hi-dro-sef-a-lus) is an abnormal accumulation of spinal fluid in the brain. This means, as fluid builds up in the brain, because it has nowhere to go, it causes immense pressure. In many cases, this problem is solved by implanting a shunt tube to drain the fluid back into the body and relieve the pressure. Unfortunately, shunts have a 50% failure rate within the first 2 years.
Jen’s son, Colton, was diagnosed before birth and had his first of 5 brain surgeries at 2 days old. He’s just one of the 6,000 babies born in the U.S. each year with this condition. Jen and her family live everyday on the edge of their seats, waiting for a call that Colton is exhibiting signs of a shunt malfunction.
With this fear in the back of her mind, Jen helps to organize the Atlanta Hydrocephalus Association WALK, each year raising awareness and funds to accelerate research to find a cure. “It’s great to raise money for this cause, but it fills my heart with joy to see families come together and support one another because they’ve been there,” said Jen.
Although her son is only 4 years old, there are 1 million Americans living with this condition. “Making people aware of the signs, headache, blurred vision, loss of balance, these are some of the signs that can help to diagnose our older loved ones,” says Jen regarding several people who go years without being diagnosed or even misdiagnosed with Alzheimer’s or Dementia.
That is exactly why Jen works each year to bring families together for the Atlanta HA WALK, to raise awareness, money and of course to make memories.