Sunday, 20th May 2018
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Waterford heroes tough it out for Debra Ireland challenge

A Waterford man helped lead the way in braving one of Ireland's toughest mountain races to help raise money for people battling the rare and very painful skin condition EB, also known as butterfly skin.

Patrick Hogan, Carrick-on-Suir, finished third in the tenth annual DEBRA Ireland Wicklow Mountains Challenge half marathon. He was joined in the event by Deirdre Cronin, Dunmore.

Debra Ireland supports people living with EB (epidermolysis bullosa), an incredibly painful skin condition that causes the skin layers and internal body linings to blister and wound at the slightest touch.

The event attracts everyone from triathletes in the half marathon to those who have never run an off-road race before with many wearing an EB butterfly tattoo on their faces in support of patients living with this condition.

EB is a distressing and painful genetic skin condition causing the skin layers and internal body linings to separate and blister at the slightest touch.

It affects approximately 1 in 18,000 babies born and can range from mild to severe. Severe forms can be fatal in infancy or lead to dramatically reduced life expectancy, due to a range of complications from the disease.

Patients need wound care and bandaging for up to several hours a day and the condition tends to become increasingly debilitating and disfiguring over time.

Adult patients with severe forms are also extremely susceptible to an aggressive form of skin cancer. There are currently no treatments or cure for EB.

For more information see http://www.debraireland.org or text BUTTERFLY to 50300 to donate €4 to Debra Ireland.

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