A 21-year-old from Carrigaline who lives with Cystic Fibrosis is marking his birthday with a fundraiser for Cystic Fibrosis Ireland (CFI).
Despite being sick from birth, David Howard was not diagnosed with cystic fibrosis until he was seven years old.
After multiple tests and trips to doctors, David’s parents were told he had Asthma. However, he remained ill and failed to thrive, and his parents knew there was more going on and continued to press for an explanation.
David described his parents as his “biggest advocates”.
“They knew there was something not right,” he said.
“That was the worst part, nobody knew what was wrong me except my mother and father, but they were constantly getting the same response – there is nothing wrong with your son.”
In 2006, David was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis and his lung function was at just 45%.
Today, however, David’s lung function is over 80% and he is determined to live his life to the fullest, unlimited by his condition.
To mark his 22nd birthday on 24 May, he has organised a fundraiser in aid of Cystic Fibrosis Ireland (CFI).
Knowing the struggle his parents faced and recognising the need of organisations like CFI in supporting patients and their families from diagnosis to adulthood, David, with the help of his friends and family, is holding a charity car wash to raise much-needed funds to allow CFI to continue to support the Cystic Fibrosis Community in Ireland.
So far, he has raised over €5,000 for the cause.
Following his diagnosis, David began a treatment regime to manage his cystic fibrosis which can take up to three hours per day.
In 2011, Newborn screening for cystic fibrosis was introduced in Ireland which means that early detection and diagnosis of the condition is now possible.
If a heel prick suggests that a baby may have Cystic Fibrosis, they will be referred to a specialist.
This ability for early intervention and treatment improves the quality of life of a child with the condition and can significantly reduce the time that they need to spend in hospital.
For more information on David's car wash visit @davidnvdhoward on Instagram or donate to the fundraiser here.