A mum of an Aberystwyth University student who passed away before picking up her degree is hoping to raise awareness of the rare condition which killed her.
Her mum, Natasha, said Emily had a severe form of a rare autoimmune condition – vasculitis – and has decided to speak out about it to raise awareness.
“This is the first time I have discussed what caused Emily’s death,” she told the Cambrian News.
“She had a rare autoimmune condition called vasculitis.
“It is very difficult to diagnose as the initial symptoms are things like aches and pains, feeling tired, tonsillitis, ear infection.
“It is crucial that it is diagnosed as early as possible as it can cause inflammation in blood vessels throughout the body and can prove fatal.
“Vasculitis has many forms, all with varying effects on the body.
“It is a lifelong condition that needs specialist treatment and monitoring.
“Emily was only diagnosed when she went into hospital on the week that she died.
“Sadly she is not alone.
“It is an unheard of illness that is difficult to diagnose and also difficult to treat.
“Treatment is lifelong after diagnosis.
“Some doctors never see a case of vasculitis in the entire career.”
As part of her healing process following Emily’s death, Natasha has been in touch with the Lauren Currie Twilight Foundation.
Lauren passed away in 2010 from vasculitis aged 15, and her parents set up the charity to raise awareness and to support sufferers and their families.
Natasha said she “would like to get involved” with the charity, who have offered support and offered to make a donation to an Aberystwyth University Scholarship Fund set up in memory of Emily following her death.
You can find out more about support for sufferers of vasculitis at www.thelaurencurrietwilightfoundation.org.