BENEFITING: MYELODYSPLASTIC SYNDROMES FOUNDATION
EVENT DATE: May 01, 2016
On February 14th, 2016 my dear father-in-law, Daniel Stevens, lost his battle with Myelodysplastic Syndrome that had progressed to acute myeloid leukemia.
I am running the Avenue of the Giants Marathon just South of Eureka, California on May 1st, 2016 in his honor and with the hope that I can raise money in support of the Myelodysplastic Syndrome Foundation. Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) are a group of diverse bone marrow disorders in which the bone marrow does not produce enough healthy blood cells. MDS is often referred to as a “bone marrow failure disorder". Healthy bone marrow produces immature blood cells called stem cells that normally develop into mature, fully functional red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. In MDS, these stem cells may not mature and may accumulate in the bone marrow or they may have a shortened life span, resulting in fewer than normal mature blood cells in the circulation. Many patients become dependent on transfusions of red blood cells and platelets in order to survive. In addition, for about 30% of the patients diagnosed with MDS, as was the case with my father-in-law, MDS progresses to acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Currently there are not many great long-term treatment options for MDS patients. I hope that with more research that can be changed. The Myelodysplastic Syndrome Foundation established and runs an international network for patients that helps connect them with resources they need to help fight their disease, provides research funding, and supports professional educational initiatives.
Please consider giving any amount of financial support that works for you. If you can't give financially, please consider donating blood or platelets regularly at an American Red Cross donation center near you. Centers can be found online at : redcross.org.