One chapter of Hallie S. Boyer’s life exposes some weaknesses in our society.
The 25-year-old Potsdam woman has been enduring chronic illnesses since childhood. She developed cyclic vomiting syndrome at age 4, with symptoms that lasted until her late teens.
Boyer also was diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, which affects connective tissues within the body that support skin, tendons, ligaments, blood vessels, internal organs and bones. In addition, she has mast cell activation syndrome, postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome and narcolepsy with cataplexy.
Her numerous issues cause her to hallucinate at times and suffer serious migraine headaches. She still has a migraine that first came on 17 months ago. In addition, she suffers frequent seizures and fevers.
Quite often, Boyer’s doctors told her that her illnesses were all in her head. It can be frustrating to suffer so many problems just be told by a health care professional that you’re merely imaging everything.
The United States is home to many of the top health practitioners and medical researchers in the world who use the most advanced technology. Numerous people benefit from the extraordinary care they receive, and they live long and productive lives as a result.
But Boyer’s story shows the severe limitations of our understanding of medical science. While there is much we know about how the body works, there is a great deal we don’t know. And this sometimes leads physicians to minimize the problems their patients experience because they can’t conceive that there’s an answer they don’t grasp.
Boyer has been hit with more health care problems than any person should expect. But this chapter takes another dramatic turn.
She went in for an MRI in December. This would check for a cerebrospinal fluid leak, a potential cause for her chronic migraines.
Instead, the MRI showed that Boyer has a brain tumor. While waiting to find out how to proceed, she ran into some more bad luck. Her doctor moved out of the area, and she’s looking for another one who can deal with her condition.
Given all these challenges, it would be easy for Boyer to become discouraged. However, her story demonstrates something extraordinary about humanity: the indomitable spirit some people exhibit to persevere.
Boyer and her life partner, 29-year-old Brandon S. Wright, have embraced optimism as a way of addressing these difficult times. They are devoted to each other and committed to handling whatever life hands them.
Both Boyer and Wright worked as teacher aides at Potsdam Central School District. But she had to resign from her position and take a leave from her studies as a science student at Clarkson University due to her health problems. Wright now works a second job to support the two of them.
A GoFundMe page has been created with a goal of raising at least $20,000 for the numerous medical bills Boyer has acquired. So far, it’s raised more than $3,000. Visit wdt.me/e7XzZa to make a donation.
She continues to look for a doctor who can take over the treatment for her brain tumor. Any physicians who may be able to help should send her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It’s heart-wrenching to hear of one person enduring so many health problems. But the courage and determination that Boyer and Wright have shown is inspiring. We hope it encourages people throughout the north country to support this couple any way they can and give them renewed hope.
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