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Latest victim of CJD lived near 'mad cow' farm
Judo champion dies from CJD

Latest victim of CJD lived near 'mad cow' farm

August 4 1997   London Times  BY DOMINIC KENNEDY
A MOTHER of four has become the twenty-first victim of the new variant of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, which scientists have linked with eating beef.

Sue Carey, 36, used to live in Mersham, Kent, near where the first "mad cow" was identified on a farm in High Halden in 1985, and where a cluster of people have since died from CJD. Between 1985 and 1987, Mrs Carey and her husband, Henry, 43, a labourer and tractor driver, lived in a tied cottage on an estate owned by the film producer Lord Brabourne, which was home to a dairy herd and beef cattle.

"We ate plenty of beef and Sue would eat a hamburger as a treat when she went into town," Mr Carey said. "In those days we didn't know anything about BSE."
An adjourned inquest into her death in March is expected to reopen next month. The National CJD Surveillance Unit in Edinburgh has just confirmed that she was suffering from the new strain of the incurable brain disease.

Last year a woman and a man, both 29, from Kent died of the new variant, which afflicts the young. A 36-year-old man with suspected CJD is still alive. A 51-year-old woman from Ashford died in 1989 and her twin sister last year, both of old-type CJD, probably inherited.

Some medical observers have criticised Canterbury Mills rendering plant for spreading effluent, including boiled cattle remains, on land in Godmersham, Kent. Fears that this might pollute the water supply were dismissed by other experts.

In 1995, while the Carey family was living on a farm in Esher, Surrey, Mrs Carey began complaining of shortness of breath. Suspecting her condition was aggravated by fumes from Heathrow, the Careys moved last autumn to Gosberton in Lincolnshire.

"At first she became deeply depressed," Mr Carey said. "She would go to collect the kids from the school bus, but she went at midday. The housework didn't get done and she'd sit for hours on the sofa. It just wasn't like Sue. She believed she had done it."
Mrs Carey died on March 8, her eldest daughter Rebecca's 15th birthday. "We are trying to get normality back into our lives but we have no money," Mr Carey said. He has given up work so he can look after Rebecca, Tracey, 13, Amanda, 11, and Christopher, 7. The family eats little meat, only pork. "You would never catch me eating beef again," Mr Carey said.

* A 15-year-old girl may have become another victim of the new strain of CJD, it emerged yesterday. Glasgow's Southern General Hospital confirmed it had been treating Donna-Marie McGivern, from Coatbridge, North Lanarkshire. Infection can be confirmed only after death.

British newspapers reports two more deaths from new variant CJD.

Correspondent summary 4 Aug 96
Sue Carey, 36, died on March 8, 1997. She lived in Mersham, Kent, with husband Henry and four children. Between 1985-87, her husband was a farmworker on the local estate of Lord Brabourne.

Mersham is located near Ashford, Kent, where Veterinarian Colin Whitaker 1985 identified the first case of BSE. A suspected cluster of nvCJD cases has been reported from the area of Ashford/Canterbury, Kent. The National CJD Surveillance Unit in Edinburgh has now confirmed that she was suffering from nvCJD.

Donna-Marie McGivern, a 15-year-old girl, from Coatbridge, North Lanarkshire in Scotland, is reported as a suspected victim of nvCJD

The total number of reported cases reported by CJDSU is now 21, with 20 deaths. Victoria Rimmer, 19, in coma and blind since 1994, is still alive. This is the second month in a row that two new cases of nvCJD have been reported in Britain.

CJD suspected after judo star dies

 PA News  Mon, Aug 4, 1997
 By Andrew Woodcock and John von Radowitz, PA News
A woman judo star who died in hospital this weekend is believed to be the 21st British victim of the new strain of CJD - the so-called human mad cow disease - it was revealed today. Mandy Minto, 27, died on Saturday in Sunderland Royal Hospital, a hospital spokesman confirmed. He said she was a suspected victim of `new-variant' Creutzfeld-Jakob Disease, which is believed to be caused by eating meat from cows infected with BSE. Mrs Minto had been ill for several months and was an in-patient at the hospital over the last few months. Hospital spokesman Graham Howard said she was suspected to be a victim of new-variant CJD, but that doctors could not be absolutely sure until a post mortem examination had been carried out. Mandy's husband told BBC Radio 5 Live how her health deteriorated over recent months: "From being able to walk with some support, she went to not being able to walk at all. "By the end of February, she was at home and we ended up doing everything for her, taking her out in a wheelchair, trying to keep life as normal as possible for her." News of Mrs Minto's death comes on the same day as the Department of Health released the latest CJD figures, showing that it had been notified of a total of 21 cases - of which hers is believed to be one. When the figures were compiled at the end of June, 20 of these patients had died and one was still alive. The figures included both "definite" cases confirmed by a post mortem examination and others listed as "probable" where symptoms matched the disease but a definitive test could not be carried out. News of the first 10 known cases of the new strain sparked off the beef crisis in March 1996. The new strain claims younger victims than the normal form of CJD and produces unusual changes in the brain. Scientists' suspicions that it might be caused by exposure to BSE-infected cattle or beef have not yet been definitively confirmed.

Judo champion dies 'from CJD'

Times 5 Aug 97 BY ADRIAN LEE
A FORMER European judo champion is believed to be the latest victim of the new variant of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. Mandy Minto, 27, a mother of two, died eight months after first showing signs of the illness that has been linked to eating beef.

Mrs Minto held a black belt at the age of 14 and became British and European youth champion four years later. A spokesman at Sunderland General Hospital, where she died on Saturday, said that CJD was suspected but the results of tests were awaited.

Her husband, Kevin, 31, of Grangetown, Sunderland, said: "She had memory lapses and was coming out with silly things. After Christmas her co-ordination started to go a bit and in the space of a few weeks she went from walking unaided to not being able to walk at all. In the end she could not talk, move or speak and we had to do everything for her."

Mrs Minto's family said she had not eaten large amounts of beef. After becoming ill she had two tests for CJD, the human form of "mad cow" disease, which proved negative.

   Her mother, Jean, said: "She was always a very fit girl and used to train
   seven days a week. We have heard of a strain of CJD that attacks fit, young
   people, so maybe that is what has claimed her life." 
Mrs Minto, who stopped competing at judo seven years ago, leaves two sons, Rhys, 5, and Jack, 3. It is believed that her case was included in the latest total of 21 victims of the new strain of CJD so far identified in Britain.

Sources: PA News, Electronic Telegraph, The Times and The Independent,
August 4 and 5, 1997.
Mandy Minto, 27, a former European Judo Champion and a mother of two, is reported as nvCJD case no. 21. Mrs Minto died on Saturday, August 2, at Sunderland General Hospital.

Graham Howard, a spokesman for the hospital, said to media that she was a suspected victim of the new variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. The results from a post-mortem examination may not be known until late this fall.

Donna-Marie McGivern, 15, from Coatbridge, Scotland, is a suspected victim of nvCJD who is still alive. In January, 1997, she complained of pain in her legs. Six months later she was diagnosed with untreatable "progressive degenerative brain disorder". She has been in a wheelchair for a couple of months, and suffers vision and speech problems. Donna-Marie is not included in CJD statistics from the U.K. Department of Health.

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