A Wallington teenager who has an “extremely serious” but rare heart and lung disease wants people to understand more about her condition.

Kaylee Mynot, 18, was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension (PH) as a baby, something which is said to affect just 7,000 people in the UK.

It causes high pressure in the blood vessels that connect to the heart and lungs, while symptoms include severe breathlessness, fatigue, and blackouts.

There is unfortunately no known cure at the moment but there is treatment to help reduce the problems people suffer with it.

The Nescot College pupil in Epsom and Ewell said: “I try not to let PH affect my days, but sometimes it’s hard because I get so tired.

“It’s also annoying that I can’t keep up with my friends and that I’m at hospital so regularly. At primary school I’d struggle to understand why I wasn’t allowed to go to sleepovers and at secondary school I was always different, so it was hard to get people to understand me.”

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Kaylee Mynot

Now Kaylee is backing a national awareness week campaign in a bid to raise awareness of the condition.

PH Awareness Week, taking place from October 22 to 29, is being set up by the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA UK).

The organisation works to help those affected by it across the UK.

She added: “I’m supporting PH Awareness Week to help people get the right diagnosis a lot quicker and to help find new treatments and medications.

“I also really want to help the public understand that some disabilities like PH are invisible, as I get a lot of funny looks and questions when I use my disabled badge and when I’m in and out of my wheelchair.”

A recent survey by PHA UK found 60 percent of patients feel the condition has had a “major impact” on their quality of life.

Meanwhile, 90 percent believe it has impacted both their mental and emotional wellbeing.

PHA chair Iain Armstrong said: “Many hear the word ‘hypertension’ and immediately assume it is high blood pressure, but PH is an extremely serious, devastating condition that has a huge impact on people’s lives.

“You can’t tell someone has PH just by looking at them, and our members tell us they are often frustrated by people not understanding how ill they are – which is why encouraging people to talk about the disease during this awareness week is so vital.”

PHA UK is urging people affected to talk to family, friends, and colleagues during the awareness week.

To find out more, you can visit www.phauk.org.

You can also search #PHWeek18 and #LetsTalkPH on social media.