With only two days to go before leaving home and travelling to Russia, to go to the AA Maximov Centre, that is one of the world’s leading providers of Hematopoietic Stem Cell Therapy (HSCT), you’ll no doubt forgive me for being a bit preoccupied at the moment.
Not that I am going there for the treatment, at least not yet. This time I’m just going for just four days, to undergo a series of tests as part of an assessment to see if I can have HSCT.
You might be wondering why that is necessary. Well, for most people it isn’t.
However, in my case it is not so simple.
Unlike most people with MS, I have not had regular MRI scans two or three times a year; in fact, not even once a year. The truth is that apart from the scan that I had leading to my diagnosis 14 years ago, I have only had one more scan – and that was for a heart problem, not MS.
Interviewing Dr Denis Fedorenko a few months ago for Multiple Sclerosis News Today, our conversation touched on my health and my suitability to have the treatment that his centre offers. From what he heard, he said that he needed to carry out tests before a firm decision could be made.
I am firmly of the opinion that HSCT is the best treatment currently available for MS, so that is the reason that my emotions about this trip are a mixture of both hope and trepidation.