A patient from The Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust has pulled a nine-tonne lorry 20 metres to raise thousands of pounds for the hospital’s charity.

Lucy Hewson, 36, from St Helens has been battling Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension (IIH) for nine years. IIH is a build-up of pressure around the brain, which can cause symptoms like vision changes and severe headaches and migraines. In some cases the pressure can cause permanent damage to eyesight and mobility.

In August 2022, Lucy had an urgent referral to the specialist neurosciences hospital after her eyesight began to deteriorate. Clinicians recommended a stent to ease the pressure in her skull, which has allowed Lucy to go from strength to strength – and pull a truck across her gym’s local car park for charity!

Lucy said: “It’s been a rollercoaster over the near decade of battling IIH. I run a haulage company, so being able to drive is incredibly important for me and my livelihood. When I moved to St Helens a few years ago I got ill and was referred to The Walton Centre via Whiston. I felt so lucky. My clinicians found narrow veins, which were contributing to the IIH and from there could treat me appropriately.

“Since having the stent fitted I’ve slowly but surely got back to normal. It’s thanks to the phenomenal treatment that I’m able to keep working and be physically active. It was to that end that I wanted to do something to give back to The Walton Centre.”

In her spare time, Lucy goes to the gym and is training to take part in a strongman competition over the summer holidays.

Lucy continued: “I wanted to do the truck pull to fundraise for the charity last year, but my neurologist said that too much pressure at that point could have really damaged my eyesight. So I followed the recovery plan and they gave me a clean bill of health at the beginning of July. It was amazing to see all the support come in for the challenge. So far I’ve raised nearly £3,000!

“I won’t let IIH define me. I’ve had dark days with it, but I won’t let it rule my life.”