GUTSY STEPS: Health battle inspires woman to walk for cause
EXTREME stomach pain, fatigue and vomiting plagued Thomasin Keogh for months as she battled to uncover the disease that she says was slowly shutting down her body.
Her weight dropped as she struggled to eat. She continued to visit multiple doctors in an effort to reach a diagnosis.
At the end of July, after an exhausting 10 months of watching her health deteriorate, Miss Keogh was diagnosed with Crohn's disease.
Despite only recently receiving her diagnosis, she is now putting on her sneakers to help raise money for others facing a similar battle.
Crohn's disease is an inflammatory bowel disease that can affect any part of the gastro- intestinal tract.
During a disease flare, inflammation in the colon, rectum and other parts of the gastrointestinal tract can become so severe that patients need to be hospitalised or may even require surgery.
"When I was sitting in the doctor's office and he said what it was, he was quite sombre about it,” Miss Keogh said.
"But I was just so happy because I knew exactly what it was, it was more about working on getting better.
"It's quite emotional once it hits you, I've gotten through with my family for sure.”
Miss Keogh, 24, must now take a significant amount of tablets every day and is undergoing monthly blood tests.
While researching support groups after her diagnosis, Miss Keogh stumbled across the Live Fearless Challenge.
As part of the challenge she is walking 150km this month to raise awareness and funds for people living with inflammatory bowel disease.
"Walking that distance every day, my legs are so sore but my back is killing me,” she said.
"But it's more about the support and what it's for.”
She has already $400 and is aiming to reach $1000 by the end of the month.
You can support her at www.livefearlesschallenge com.au/fundraisers/thomasinkeogh