My Name is Catriona Martin, I am a Proud survivor of Hereditary Haemorrhagic Telangiectasia (HHT). A Rare genetic disorder that affects the blood vessels. My story with HHT all began six weeks after my birth when I suffered a brain haemorrhage which was followed by several months in hospital. At that time my family hadn’t heard of HHT and as my dad had passed away in September before my birth due to a brain haemorrhage – this was seen as coincidental.
It wasn’t until 2011 when my niece was having very heavy nosebleeds, her dad (my brother) and his wife started to research possible causes.
Following a genetic test we discovered HHT was a possibility and they were put in contact with Margaret Murphy, Dr Adrian Brady and Dr Terry O’Connor in The Mercy University Hospital Cork. It was finally a relief to have answers to so many unanswered questions and to know that I have a condition that although not curable it is treatable. HHT is very much part of me and my family’s story but knowing I have HHT has enabled me to gain control of my health and allowed me to enjoy my life to the fullest. I often think about my father and wish he had the knowledge and health care we now have. Knowledge is power and having a diagnosis has empowered me to live a healthy & happy life. Spreading Awareness is Key. I like to think of myself as “The Survivor” – as I overcame the very first hurdle life threw at me and I’m still here to tell the tail