‘This is a danger age for men’ - Mid Ulster brain tumour sufferer launches appeal to pay for immunotherapy

Robbie and Nuala Ryan from Ballinderry
Robbie and Nuala Ryan from Ballinderry

A couple have praised the “unbelievable generosity” of the public after a fundraising appeal for pioneering medical treatment raised several thousand pounds in a matter of days.

Keen cyclist and walker, Robbie Ryan, is suffering from a Grade 4 Glioblastoma brain tumour and he and wife Nuala hope to raise £200,00 for immunotherapy, which is not available on the NHS.

Nuala learned about the treatment after reading the story of Nicki Waterman, who was diagnosed with an inoperable and agressive brain tumour but is now in remission after receiving immunotherapy.

Nuala has launched a fundraising webpage - www.gofundme.com/22hxe5g - which, in its first two weeks has raised well over £16,000.

As well as their hopes to pay for Robbie’s treatment, the Ballinderry couple would like to raise awareness of the need for more research into brain tumours.

Robbie and Nuala point out that they are very grateful for the high level of care provided by both the Royal and City Hospitals in Belfast, adding: “This type of tumour happens in males particularly, between the ages of 45 and 50 which, apparently, is a danger age for men.”

Forty-seven year-old Robbie was active and healthy when he experienced tiredness in the months before his first seizure, as well as a feeling of claustrophobia on car journeys.

Before his illness, Robbie was a popular staff member at the A29 Garage in Cookstown, where a donation bucket has been kindly provided for anyone who wishes to contribute. Buckets are also available at the Brewery chip shop and Burnavon Arts Centre in Cookstown.