Mikey McCathern Medical Fund

You can count on many things in life. The sun will come up each morning and set each night. Each one of your days will have a normal rhythm and pattern. Wake up, go to work or school, play with your kids, cook dinner, laugh, share the events of your day with friends and family and then get ready to do it all again. You make plans for the future and get through the day to day never really thinking that disaster could be right around the corner. When disaster hits unexpectedly, as all disasters do, you realize that life as you have known it has come to a screeching halt and is rapidly accelerating in a frightening direction that you never saw coming. Disasters come in many forms. For our family the disaster came last Thursday 9-29-16  in the form of a tumor silently and sinisterly hiding 39cm down in Mikey’s esophagus and the diagnosis of Stage IV Esophageal Adenocarcinoma that had spread to his lymphatic system before detection.

There were no huge red flags. Mikey had been having
some acid reflux. This runs in his family so his doctor gave him a prescription and life went on. Then a few months ago Mikey started having problems swallowing and began to lose weight. And referrals were made for an endoscopy. The thought that it was cancer never came into our minds. They call this cancer “The Beast” and having seen firsthand it’s effects I agree.  In the past 3 months Mikey has lost 40lbs and is no longer able to ingest solid food.  As part of his treatment plan of chemotherapy and radiation his doctors will also do a stinting procedure to allow him to begin to eat again and take in nutrition which he desperately needs to fight this horrible disease.

We are lucky to have medical insurance through Mikey’s employer but as many of you know even with insurance the cost of battling an advanced cancer can be staggering: Copays for specialist visits, hospital stays, prescription medications, treatments and medicines to reduce or eliminate symptoms, lab test, x-rays, Pet scans, our percentage of costs even with insurance, plus out of pocket expenses are adding up quickly. Doctors have also put Mikey’s name in for a clinical trial. Trials offer a great deal of hope and the best chance for miraculous outcomes.  However, the cost of these trials are often not covered by medical insurance at all. This includes: The study drug and therapy, lab tests for the trial, and additional x-rays and imaging for the trial.  
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Mikey is a wonderful Father, Husband, and Friend to all he meets. Mikey has never met a stranger and is truly a friend to all. He is the nicest most easy going man I know. He bends over backwards to help anyone and everyone if he is asked. No matter what is asked. He is also one not to back down from a fight. Mikey rarely asks for help. Right now he is asking you for your help to fight this horrible disease.

Thank You and God Bless!!!
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Ambriel McCathern 
Austin, TX
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