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Walter: Father of Scleroderma Patient

He is the best son a father could ever hope to have.

My name is Walter Ferguson.My son, Wally, was recently diagnosed as having scleroderma. I am sharing my story to help in any way I can toward finding a cure for this disease and better treatment of its adverse effects.

Wally is twenty-seven years of age. He is a CPA auditor for a major accounting firm. He got married this past June, and he and wife Megan, purchased a home a few months later. In November he received his diagnosis of scleroderma. He is the best son a father could ever hope to have.

His symptoms include the changing color of his hands in response to cold, with ulcers beginning on the tips of his fingers. He has had the changing color symptoms for over a year. He is currently awaiting results of tests on effects of the disease on kidneys and lungs. He is taking a circulation medication once a day and another medication, Penicillamine, to slow the buildup of collagen. He has been advised to wear gloves to keep his hands warm. His first visit was to a dermatologist, who sent him to a local rheumatologist for his current tests and treatment.

According to what I have read on the web, the cause is not known, and there are no drugs proven to change the course of the disease. "At present, there are no drugs approved by the FDA or that have been adequately demonstrated by clinical study to modify the course of Scleroderma." (See Scleroderma Clinical Trials.)

Wally has always been strong and healthy. My wife and I need help in helping him cope with this terrible disease.

We would appreciate any help and guidance offered to help in finding a cure and successful treatment, and in coping with this disease.

To Contact the Author

Walter Ferguson
Email (not listed)
Story submitted:11-25-02
Story posted:11-26--02

ISN Senior Artist: Sherrill Knaggs
Story Editor: Judith R. Thompson
LINKS
Caregivers Stories
Causes of Scleroderma
Digital Ulcers
Digital Ulcer Stories
Raynaud's
Raynaud's Stories
Kidney Involvement
Lung Involvement
Penicillamine
Rheumatologist
What is Scleroderma?
Scleroderma Clinical Trials

ISN Artist: Sherrill Knaggs (In Loving Memory)

Sherrill KnaggsSherrill Knaggs, ISN Artist, created the digital photo to illustrate the story on this page. Sherrill lived in New Zealand. Her story was featured in ISN's book, Voices of Scleroderma Volume 2.

ISN Story Editor: Judith Thompson Devlin

Photo of JudithJudith Thompson Devlin is the ISN Story Editor for this story. She is also lead editor of the ISN's wonderful Voices of Scleroderma book series!

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