A NURSERY teacher is trying to raise £45,000 to cover a course of treatment she hopes could "save her life".

Nina Matthews, 42, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) in 2009 after going temporarily blind with optic neuritis and collapsing in a shop.

Now, she is trying to raise cash to cover a 28 day course of haematopoietic stem cell therapy in Mexico.

The treatment involves chemotherapy before reinserting stem cells and is available in the UK, but Nina does not meet the criteria.

She said: “It’s been really difficult fundraising in lockdown, I had quite a few events planned but they have been cancelled and I feel a little bit disheartened.

“My husband has been really supportive, if we can’t raise the money it would financially destroy us but he said my health is more important.

“This isn’t something I’d do if I wasn’t desperate, but my mobility is quite bad."

Nina, who lives in Horwich but works at Higher Croft Children's Centre in Blackburn, has been unable to work since March after a flare-up.

Her medication, which costs £70,000 a year, is available through the NHS, but this only manages her symptoms and does not prevent the disease from progressing further.

The treatment available in Mexico is typically used to treat bone marrow and blood cancers, but has also shown effectiveness in treating MS, according to the MS Society.

Nina is currently booked in to start treatment at the Clínica Ruiz at the end of November, and will need to find the remaining £40,000 before then.

The family are searching for new ways to fundraise after their planned events were cancelled. Visit the Facebook group Ninas HSCT Journey or justgiving.com/crowdfunding/nina-matthews to help fundraise.