Joost collaborates on PLN Youth Day: ‘From then on, as children, we were under annual check-ups with the cardiologist’

On Saturday, April 20, 2024, we will host the first official PLN: You’ll Have It Youth Day. This day is for young people ages 16 and up through young adults up to 35. Partners, parents and others are also welcome. During this day, we talk about what it means to have PLN. Thanks to the efforts of a very dedicated team of volunteers, this day can be organized in Hoogkerk. Leading up to this special day, we talk to the people behind the scenes.

Joost Westerhof is 26 years old, lives in Groningen and works during the week as a consultant for a procurement consulting firm. “On weekends, I can often be found at ‘the FC’ or at another soccer stadium. I also like to seek out socializing with friends.” Besides the sociability in his life, he was faced with the genetic heart muscle disease PLN at a young age. “It was discovered in my mother 15 years ago.”


That was also the first time for the family to deal with PLN. “From then on, as children, we were under annual checkups with the cardiologist,” Joost says. It became a big theme within the family. Because of this, Joost knew a lot about the disease as an adolescent. The message that Joost himself was a carrier came as a bolt from the blue. Unsuspectingly at age 20, at visited the hospital for the annual checkup.

The cardiologist had a serious message. “He told me that the first arrhythmias had occurred and my heart pump function had taken quite a step backwards.” That same month, Joost received an ICD and medication. Because of this sequence, Joost also took a slightly different route: “My physical symptoms were determined first. Then the genetic testing followed. I actually knew beforehand that PLN was the culprit.”

Getting in touch with the PLN Foundation

“Through my mother, I got in touch with the foundation,” she said. Since PLN has been in the family for some time, Joost went looking for information. “You soon end up with the foundation. Through the socials, I follow updates and activities of the foundation.” Eventually, his involvement led to organizing Youth Day. According to Joost, a nice addition to the foundation’s well-attended information afternoons, “When I heard that there was an idea for such a Youth Day, I was immediately enthusiastic and expressed a desire to get involved.”

Youth Day Organization

It is important to know that as a young carrier, you are not alone. Youth Day will be a day of information, meeting and interaction. “We are all young and already have quite a lot to deal with,” Joost explains. During the day, a cardiologist and several healthcare professionals will take the youngsters through developments surrounding PLN. Questions can be answered and there are activities to meet. “It promises to be a very beautiful day, so this is actually not to be missed as a young carrier and neighbor!”

Would you like to attend Youth Day? You can register for free for a day of information, meeting and interaction. You are not alone and certainly don’t need to be! For example, bring your parent, partner or other involved person and be welcome during this beautiful day at Van der Valk in Hoogkerk. Sign up quickly through this page on our website.

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