An ex-Liverpool player with motor neuron disease has urged the government to provide hope to others suffering from the disease.
Former Liverpool footballer Stephen Darby has urged the government to offer patients suffering from motor neuron disease “hope” that a cure would be discovered within their lifetime. He is supporting a Sunday Express campaign to get £50 million in government funding over five years for an MND Research Institute, which will allow experts to collaborate to develop effective treatments for the quickly developing terminal illness that damages the brain and spinal cord.
“It’s all about timing, and there’s no better time than now,” Stephen, 32, remarked. Researchers are making progress with the limited funds they have, but we need more from the government to bring us to where we need to be faster and give patients with MND hope.”
When he was diagnosed with the condition in September 2018, the right defender, who also played for Bradford City and Bolton Wanderers, was forced to retire at the age of 29. The news came just three months after he married Steph Houghton, the co-captain of Team GB’s women’s football team at the Tokyo Olympics.
“A third of persons diagnosed with MND die within a year, and half die within two years of diagnosis,” Stephen stated from their home.
“These data demonstrate the disease’s devastation. It affects your arms, legs, speaking, swallowing, eating, and muscles, among other things.
“It’s distressing to see the physical consequences of MND. It is, without a doubt, a dreadful disease.
“Add to that the reality that there is no treatment or cure for MND, and it is extremely difficult for individuals who have been diagnosed.”
“It doesn’t just effect the person who has MND,” he continued. It also impacts your wife, partner, and the family and friends who are accompanying you on this harrowing trip. They see the effects of MND on a daily basis. They witness you struggle with your hands, or with feeding yourself, or with dressing yourself, or with walking.
“It’s likely that they feel helpless at times because all they want to do is help. But I couldn’t have done it without my wife and family for the past three years, and their support has meant the world to me.”
According to the former England under-19 defender, who began his career in Liverpool’s youth system. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”