Una’s fight to be heard
Thursday, 23 February 2017
A BALLYCASTLE woman who lost numerous family members to a little known disease, has pledged to be the 'voice' that will bring awareness and education to the community. Una McMillan lost her mother, her sister and her brother to Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF), an interstitial lung disease which, unfortunately as yet, has no cure.
Only months after burying her beloved sister Eileen, Una was diagnosed with the same disease - confirming a suspicion that she had all along, there may be a genetic link to IPF.
Speaking to the Chronicle in the Ballycastle home she shares with Tommy, her husband of 46 years and their dog Rico, Una said she is determined to raise awareness of this cruel disease, so rare that it is often misdiagnosed, yet so common that in the whole of the UK, it's most prevalent in Northern Ireland.
With as many as 679 people dying in NI from this progressive disease every year, Una and Tommy said it was crucial to them that people are aware of the symptoms and the importance of early diagnosis.
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