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Maddie's Story

CRPS Impact on Carers

Chronic pain conditions like CRPS have a profound impact not just on individual lives but also on those forming their core support system at home. Family members may suddenly find themselves in a caregiving position which is particularly difficult when there isn’t much time to make major lifestyle adjustments.

It is imperative, therefore, that CRPS carers, along with patients, have access to the right resources to support them in this arduous journey. At Burning Nights, we offer support services for anyone affected by CRPS, whether it is an individual or a caregiver for loved ones.

The image shows Maddie with her brother Dillon at a museum outing together

Meeting Maddie, a Young Carer

Maddie Cresswell, from Bolton, became a carer to her brother Dillon at the age of 23. Dillon was diagnosed with CRPS in his left leg a few months after a minor injury during PE lessons at school. He was only 10 at the time. Dillon’s condition quickly took a downward turn; so much so that he desperately wanted to amputate his leg and no longer wanted to live.

Maddie stepped in to help her mum Melanie, a single parent, take care of young Dillon. This meant giving up her job to take turns being at home with her brother who was forced to leave school due to his agonising condition.

Impact of Being a Carer

As Maddie’s responsibilities and concerns grew, her own mental health started to deteriorate. The reality of life as a young carer was starting to set and there were feelings of strong overwhelm, anxiety and fatigue.

Maddie came across Burning Nights CRPS Support while researching for carers’ support online. She signed up for the Counselling & Therapy Service in the summer before Dillon started his treatment; she remembers this as being a very tough time for her personally, as there was little to cling on to for hope and things were quite difficult at home. 

Burning Nights CRPS Counselling Support

When asked if therapy helped her, Maddie says: “I have had short bouts of counselling in the past, but never experienced a positive effect like I did this time. I still say this now, it was the only time that it had a real impact on me.”

She goes on to say, “I cannot praise my therapist enough. She made me feel really understood and valued…helped me to understand myself and learn how to make small changes to improve my day-to-day.”

“I continue to think about what she taught me every day….I am still improving and will continue to do so thanks to Burning Nights’ counselling and my wonderful therapist.”

“The fact that I was offered 20 sessions as well, that was huge…that is a lot. And it’s probably what a lot of people need, but I think even on the NHS you don’t tend to get that,” says Maddie.

Dillon’s CRPS recovery and Maddie’s improved mental health

Maddie’s story is fortunately one with a happy ending as Dillon’s CRPS started to improve following VECTTOR therapy and her own mental health was addressed with counselling sessions. The fog finally began to lift in the Wilford home and the family soon found their new normal following Dillon’s CRPS diagnosis.



CRPS Support for You

If you too are a (young) carer like Maddie, we would love to offer you our full support. Caring doesn’t need to be a lonely and uncertain journey; with the right assistance and resources, we can help you take control with confidence so you can focus on taking care of your loved ones.

Click here to find out more about how Burning Nights can help you.

How You can support Us

You can play your part too; sign up to our free e-newsletter and stay informed about our work and receive updates on any news, appeals, events and campaigns relating to CRPS.

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Or why not make a donation so we can continue supporting people like Maddie? Just £5 a month could help us in our mission to raise awareness and provide support to those affected by CRPS.

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We thank you in advance for your generosity and look forward to building a better future for our CRPS warriors!


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Registered Address: 1 Alder Brook, Chinley, High Peak, Derbyshire SK23 6DN.
Registered Charity No. 1166522
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