Diana Olijar, who lives in Fallowfield, is in crippling debt due to medical bills. Diana Olijar had a perfect life: she was an air hostess with a modeling career and a beautiful baby girl.

But injuries sustained in a horrific attack by a former partner changed everything, leaving her bedridden with a condition that could have resulted in internal decapitation.

Due to Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS), which affects her skin, tendons, ligaments, blood vessels, internal organs, and bones, the 34-year-old from Fallowfield now spends much of her time lying in a dark room. The pain is so severe that even simple tasks like making a cup of tea become impossible.

Diana told the Manchester Evening News that she was working as a cabin crew member for Thomas Cook Airlines when she suffered a spinal injury in an attack in 2012.

Her symptoms were initially more subtle, such as dizziness, migraines, and neck pain. Doctors told her for years that the most likely cause was fatigue and that she needed a “good night’s sleep.”

Her symptoms, however, became more numerous and severe. Her vision and hearing deteriorated, and her joints distorted at random.

Diana was finally diagnosed with EDS and Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS), a type of nervous system dysfunction, in 2018. She believes the late diagnosis to a lack of awareness about the condition.

“All I heard from medical professionals was that it was just a trauma reaction and that I needed rest and sleep,” she told the Manchester Evening News. “They said it would get better with time, but it was getting progressively worse until I got diagnosed.

“I’ve not talked about it for a long time because of the shame of what I’ve experienced. My whole life is basically medical care and trying to get better. I’m not managing anything. I know there is a long way to go and a lot of treatments ahead of me.”

Diana’s neck cannot support the weight of her own head due to the debilitating conditions caused by the trauma she suffered, resulting in severe pain, headaches, and blurred vision. Diana’s neck instability requires her to wear a collar and use a wheelchair when she leaves the house.

Following a desperate plea for help, the mother of one set up a fundraiser last year to have a craniocervical fixation, a bone operation in which the skull connects to the spine.

While the surgery saved her spine and brainstem, Diana now needs to raise £100K for a second operation to untether her spinal cord to maintain her independence in the future.

“I’m working at addressing what is happening with my body because the condition has been progressing,” Diana continued. “It’s for medical treatment and legal fees.

“I remain positive and I trust that there will be someone who can help me through it. I hope I can get better enough to go back to any employment so I can provide for my 14-year-old daughter. It’s important to bring awareness to the situation and the condition.

“I believe I can regain a normal quality of life, the ability to provide for my family, and once again be the parent my child deserves. As of now, I rely on a wheelchair and struggle on a daily basis, and this is heartbreaking for us both.

“I really hope someone can help. At this point, I have a crippling debt due to medical bills. I still need so much treatment. I strongly believe, that with the right medical care, including aggressive stem cells therapy, I can recover and be the mother my child so desperately needs and deserves.”



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