Morecambe man’s Great North challenge in aid of his family

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A Morecambe man is rising to a Great challenge to help in the fight against a heart disease affecting his dad and brother.

Ashley Brown’s dad Michael, aged 52, and brother Matthew, 28, have hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, an inherited condition that causes the heart to thicken. This can affect the heart’s rhythm and its ability to pump.

Ashley, 25, from Bellamy Avenue is taking on the Great North Run in two weeks’ time to raise money for the Cardiomyopathy Association.

This is a charity that provides information and support to affected families, and campaigns for more affected families to have heart checks and gene testing.

It is the first time that 
Ashley has taken on such an event.

He said: “I’m keen to raise awareness of cardiomyopathy and hope to raise over £500 to help the fight against the disease.

Training is going well and I’m hoping to finish in under 2hrs 15 mins.

Ashley’s dad first became aware of his condition about 20 years ago when he went into hospital for a small operation.

When he had a pre-op check they found that he had a heart murmur. He was diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and referred to St George’s Hospital in London.

Now 52, he is on medication.

Matthew was diagnosed with the condition when he was 17.

At 20, he had an internal defibrillator fitted to ensure his heart stays in a normal rhythm.

It will shock his heart 
if it develops a dangerous rhythm.

Ashley’s mum Andrea, 51, is on the charity’s network of volunteers who provide support to others by telephone and email.

She also raises funds and has organised meetings of the North West Cardiomyopathy Support Group.

The group is looking for more members. For details contact Andrea by email at andbrown1@hotmail.co.uk

For more information about cardiomyopathy or the Cardiomyopathy Association, see the charity’s website 
www.cardiomyopathy.
org or call free phone 0800 0181 024.