NZ Herald 29 January 2019
An Invercargill toddler with a condition likely to cut her life short at the age of 4 is finding some comfort thanks to medicinal cannabis.
Keira Mcmurdo is one of just three people in the world with a rare condition known as FUT8.
For most of the 3-year-old’s life she has suffered up to 30 seizures a day and cannot talk, walk or swallow.
For Keira’s mum Sascha Abey, watching her beautiful daughter suffer has been heart-breaking.
“I’d never seen a seizure before. I remember her first one – she went blue and her eyes rolled back. It’s really tough seeing your own child go through that and not being able to do anything,” Abey told the Herald.
But, for the last month she has been given 1.5mL of Tilray cannabidiol (CBD) through her feeding tube every day and her seizures have dropped to less than five a day.
“She can reach [and push off] the bottom of the pool now, something she had never been able to do before. She is more engaged and now loves interacting with people, you can hear the joy in her voice,” Abey said.
She said medicinal cannabis wasn’t a cure but it was life-changing.
“I just want to give my daughter the quality of life she deserves even if that’s for less than a year.”
Abey was 23 when she gave birth to her first-born, Keira.