Campaign launched to help get dog for Ester

Ester is a four-year-old girl with a big heart and a fighting spirit who suffers multiple daily epileptic seizures.
The most frightening seizures occur at night when she is sleeping and can sometimes stop breathing.
Ester’s cousin, Kyneton local Paige Hinneberg, said the seizures began in September 2017.
“The right side of her brain was sending electrical impulses that spread across her brain and made her lose control of her body,” Paige said.
“They spiralled out of control within weeks and she was having three a day, every day.
“They affected her body so much that she forgot how to walk and stopped talking. They made one side of her face droop, looking very similar to a stroke.”
Paige said Ester was put in hospital for a week so the doctors could give her medication to stop her brain from causing the seizures.
“She finally learnt how to walk again and is still practising talking,” Paige said.
“Her parents – my aunty and uncle – had to start co-sleeping with Ester because she was having lots of seizures at night when she sleeps. When this happens Ester can sometimes stop breathing.”
Ester underwent many tests and was finally diagnosed with a brain condition called ‘focal cortical dysplasia’.
“Sometimes surgery can be done, however Ester’s brain is so severely malformed that surgery isn’t going to work,” Paige said.
“This also means that her seizures are drug resistant and will continue for the rest of her life.”
Paige has kickstarted a crowdfunding campaign to help Ester’s family raise the $30,000 they need to purchase an assistance dog for Ester.
The dog would be able to sleep with Ester, detect and alert her parents up to 45 minutes before she has a seizure.
“The assistance dog will be a great benefit to Ester in helping with her seizures and possibly saving her life as they can detect them sooner,” Paige said.
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