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Teen Fundraising For Life-Changing Treatment After Injury Left Him Feeling Like He's 'Burning Alive'

Teen Fundraising For Life-Changing Treatment After Injury Left Him Feeling Like He's 'Burning Alive'

Jack Puttock suffered a fairly common injury which he thought would get better in time and he'd continue with normal life

A minor injury left a teenager feeling like he's being 'burned alive' - and is desperately needing specialist treatment in the US.

Jack Puttock, 19, was diagnosed with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) which can occur from the smallest of injuries.

CRPS is known to be the most excruciating condition humans can experience and, according to the McGill Pain Index, the condition has been placed at number 42 on the scale, with childbirth or the amputation of a finger or toe coming in at 40.

Jack, who is from Hitchin, in Hertfordshire, explained how he injured his wrist on a metal plate which left him with an 'egg-sized lump'.

Jack Puttock

Believing it would go away, he continued with his daily life until the pain became 'unlike anything he'd ever experienced'.

Jack explained how the swelling finally went down but what he was left with was much worse. As well as the unbearable pain, his condition resulted in him suffering from weekly seizures (which stopped in December 2019) as well as vomiting and fluctuations in weight loss.

The undergraduate business student is now raising money to fund life-changing treatment in the US for the chronic condition. He hopes to get to the Spero Clinic in Fayetteville, Arkansas, where he will be treated.

Speaking to LADbible, the business undergraduate said: "It's hard to explain what it feels like to someone, the easiest way to describe it to someone who doesn't understand is you've poured boiling water over yourself but it's a burning sensation at that intensity.

Jack Puttock

"Most people say that it's like being burned alive, which for many people it's a hard comparison to understand. It's horrible. It's a pain that you can't escape and who's always there to ruin your plans or make you feel awful."

He went on to add: "I mask everything incredible well, if someone looked at me they'd think everything was fine - but in reality, my life is constantly falling apart. 

"Only those close to me have understood what and how this condition affects me because I don't want to be known as the 'Guy who's always sick'."

Explaining how he felt at the time of the injury, Jack said: "I was confused, angry at the world for why it was happening to me.

Jack Puttock

"These feelings went on for months until I eventually received a diagnosis, and though I still experienced pain all the time and my situation was no different, I felt that I was being listened to finally.

"Over time I found peace, and though this is still a massive burden on not only me but other people around me, I try to find the positives in each situation and it has made me grateful for each day that goes by."

Despite living in constant pain and having to stop doing activities he loved, Jack managed to distract himself so he could 'still have a life' and set up a company over lockdown.

Being unable to take on what he calls a 'traditional teenage job', he decided to utilise his skills as a front-end web developer and he freelances when he can.

Jack tries to see things from a positive perspective which has to be commended. He added: "Would I have just worked a normal job? Not had those opportunities? Met those people?

Jack Puttock

"I believe most life events happen for a reason, and they stem from the effect CRPS had on my life, which in my case was generally positive.

"If someone asked whether I'd change the past three years, I would tell them no. People may be surprised at that, but this condition has taught me things about my body most people don't learn in a lifetime, strengthened me both physically and emotionally, taught me a lot about people, relationships and has shaped me into the person I am today.

"My journey is far from over with CRPS, but my main objective, aside from getting better, is to raise awareness for this condition to anyone and everyone - it's important people don't go through the same terrifying events I did, and if they do then they have proper education."

You can donate to Jack's fundraising page here.

Featured Image Credit: Jack Puttock

Topics: Health, UK News