Listening Time — 27:00
Victoria Graham attempts to go through each day with the positivity of a beauty pageant champion, which makes sense because she is one. But hidden behind that smile and positive attitude is almost constant pain.
Victoria has Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, or EDS, which affects her body’s connective tissues, causing dangerously flexible joints and fragile skin.
In this episode of Move Forward Radio, Victoria describes how she manages her condition, which has involved medication, physical therapy, and multiple surgeries.
One of those surgeries left a 25-inch scar down the length of her spine. Now, Victoria is looking to make a similarly lasting impression on others with invisible diseases like EDS by sharing her story.
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Victoria Graham is founder of The Zebra Network, a charitable organization that provides awareness, advocacy, education for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS), and support to patients. Despite being diagnosed with EDS at the age of 13 and struggling daily to find health professionals familiar with the condition, and despite the restrictions of EDS and 8 brain and spinal neurosurgeries, Victoria went on to play collegiate soccer and lacrosse. She also was crowned Miss White Oak 2016 and Miss Frostburg 2017, where she presented the platform: "But You Don't Look Sick" – Making Invisible Illnesses Visible.