Local business helps woman fighting rare disease

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Reported by: Ashley Cullins
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Updated: 3/30/2013 9:06 pm
RENO, Nev. (KRNV & MyNews4.com) -- Stephanie Ludlow has a disease that causes chronic, painful tumors and requires expensive surgeries and treatments, and today Pearle Studios salon in reno is cutting hair to help her cut her medical bills.

"No surgery, no chemo, no medicines have ever worked yet," Ludlow said.

Ludlow is fighting aggressive fibromatosis - a disease that causes recurring cancerous tumors.

There's no cure - and surgery to remove the tumors just adds fuel to the disease.

"Every time you have surgery it produces scar tissue," Ludlow said. "Then the tumor eats the scar tissue and it's a never-ending cycle."

She said it causes her intense pain and interferes with daily activities.

"One day I have to stay in bed all day long, the next day I have energy and do what I can," Ludlow said. "My family says I do too much but I've got to knock it out of the park when I can."

She wants to try a new treatment but it's expensive so her sister Ashley Dollarhide and her coworkers at Pearle Studios are trying to raise five thousand dollars. 

"It's a great community," Dollarhide said. "Everybody's helping me out, no questions asked."

"I know Stephanie and being able to help her is absolutely amazing," said Pearle owner Kate Reilley. "It feels incredible."

They're offering salon services in exchange for donations, and so far they've been busy.

"It's awesome," Reilley said. "The community is really impressing me today."

Ludlow's strength is really impressing her family.

"She's never asked 'why me,'" Dollarhide said. "She's just gone into it thinking better me than somebody else because I know I'm strong and I can get through this."

"I've been going through this for so long and I've never had anyone help me becuase I thought I could do it myself," Ludlow said.

But after fighting for more than a decade, she's letting the people at Pearle help.

"I don't think I'll ever be able to thank them," Ludlow said.

If you couldn't make it to the event, but want to help you can make a donation at Pearle Studios, 670 Alvaro St., during business hours Monday through Friday.
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