MONTREAL, May 7, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - Dr. Alain Bouthillier, neurosurgeon at the Centre hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal (CHUM), shared his pride with all members of the CHUM Epilepsy Group in revealing the total amount collected through their fundraising campaign Together at the summit, to conquer epilepsy. The $109,754 collected for the benefit of the Fondation du CHUM will be devoted to epilepsy research, thus improving the quality of life of patients and even offering hope of a cure for some.
The campaign, launched in Spring 2013, also took the form of a personal challenge for the neurosurgeon. In addition to his target of raising $100,000 to finance research projects and promoting awareness of epilepsy in Quebec, Dr. Bouthillier also set his own goal of climbing to the 8,848 m summit of Mount Everest.
Sadly, Dr. Bouthillier's mountaineering challenge ended abruptly following the April 18 avalanche that claimed the lives of 16 Sherpas, the most deadly tragedy in the history of Mount Everest. Still, he expressed great satisfaction with the success of the charitable component of the expedition.
"Of course, I would have liked to complete the adventure... But my disappointment is mitigated by the joy of knowing that our financial objective has actually been exceeded, thanks to the participation and support of so many donors and partners. They all helped make it possible to reach a new peak in the fight to overcome epilepsy, and we thank them warmly!" said Dr. Bouthillier following his talk entitled Everest 2014: les effets d'une tragédie.
The lecture given by the neurosurgeon and seasoned mountain climber to an attentive audience was realistic in dealing with the impact of the tragedy. "I knew the risks associated with this ascent, but they became very real in the wake of the avalanche," he said. "For me, mountain climbing is an opportunity for introspection. It helps me to develop empathy, compassion and a better understanding of patients who live with epilepsy. This gives me the opportunity to appreciate all facets of life. Climbing mountains has made me a better man."
The adventure thus ends with a hope that the funds collected will lead to new research perspectives, new treatments and the prospect of a brighter future for patients living with a disease that often receives too little recognition.
Dr. Alain Bouthillier and the CHUM Epilepsy Group would especially like to thank UCB for its financial participation in the campaign Together at the summit, to conquer epilepsy. He also reminds us that there is still time to make a donation at fondationduchum.com.
About the CHUM's Epilepsy Group
The CHUM's Epilepsy Group is a multidisciplinary team composed of three neurologists and a neurosurgeon with specialized training in epilepsy treatment and surgery. Their mission is to assess and care for the complex cases of epilepsy which are often resistant to medication. Each year, this team deals with 600 new cases and welcomes 4,250 visitors. chumepilepsie.org
About the Fondation du CHUM
The Fondation du Centre hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal (CHUM) acts as a catalyst and a driving force behind the CHUM as it carries out its mission through a great many initiatives, fundraising activities (mailings, solicitation from individual donors, private foundations and businesses) and its capital fundraising campaign. Since 1998, it has turned over more than 102 million dollars to the CHUM thanks to the generosity of its donors. Whether it is a matter of purchasing state-of-the-art equipment, supporting research projects which lead to the development of promising treatment methods, helping to train tomorrow's medical specialists or underwriting the promotion of health, the funds raised contribute toward offering ever better care to patients. fondationduchum.com
Photos supplied upon request.
SOURCE: Fondation du CHUM
For further information: Elodie Grange, Director, Communications and Marketing, Fondation du CHUM, 514 890-8361, [email protected]; Marie-Luce Pelletier Legros, Conseillère, communication et marketing, Fondation du CHUM, 514 890-8077, poste 36182, [email protected]