Hello everyone ! My name is Dana Knueppel and my brother Brian and I are doing this campaign for my loving and caring mother, Leslie.
It all started in the early months of 2015, my mom felt a small lump on her left breast; she went in to the doctor and on May 22,2015 the news came back. She was diagnosed with stage 3 ER& Invasive ductal carcinoma of the left breast. She started chemotherapy treatment on June 14,2015. After 8 rounds of chemo, she successfully completed treatment on September 10,2015. My mom had continued to work until about half way through chemotherapy. She was handling treatment really well but was tired a lot and her body was sore.
The next step was to have a bilateral mastectomy with lymph node removal and then start radiation. The surgery took place on October 27,2015 but the surgical incisions had become infected and opened up about 3 weeks after the procedure. Because of this,radiation had to be put on hold...Which wasn't exactly what she wanted but there was literally nothing anyone could do,she could not start the radiation until the wounds were fully healed and closed up.
On March 29,2016 she was finally able to start radiation. The radiation was tough, she got blisters and sores all over her chest area but toughed it out and completed treatment on May 25,2016!! During those past couple months she was also having tests and blood work done to make sure the cancer had not spread to any other areas...as far as we knew it hadn't.
My Mom was preparing to have final reconstructive surgery around September/October 2016... We thought we were nearing the end of this journey..and maybe after this last procedure was complete she could finally start getting back into work;because as anyone can imagine, this treatment is not cheap and although insurance covers SOME it really is not much..
In early July my mom started having a pain in her groin area, she really didn't think anything of it as she has had pain from the chemotherapy throughout the past months. She followed up with her family doctor who intially didn't see anything unusual on the x-ray but still wanted to send her for a CAT scan to be safe. A couple days after the scan her doctor called and asked that her and my dad come in for a visit. This is when she informed them that the cancer had spread to her lungs, liver, pelvic, lymph nodes, spin and bones.
Not even two weeks after this discovery, my mom noticed her right expander- expanders were put in right after her bilateral mastectomy to stretch and prepare the area for the reconstructive and implants-was very red and swollen. On Friday July 29 we went to the plastic surgeon and he thought it was an infection, gave her some antibiotics and sent her home. The weekend didn't go well,she was still in a lot of pain and now was having problems breathing. After another visit to the surgeon it was decided the expander was going to come out Tuesday August 2nd. A procedure that was supposes to take 30 mins was now taking over 2 hours, that's when the surgeon came out and told my dad that was my mom was having problems catching her breath and they were going to transfer her to the hospital. Once she was at the hospital they did more tests and checks and she had a collapsed lung, blood clot in her lung and phenomia.. She has been in the hospital ever since .This was ALOT to take in as we had literally just discovered the cancer had spread and was now stage 4; not curable but treatable.. Completely life changing for all of us.
The plan is to get her immune system strong again so she can do chemotherapy again and get into remission.
My mom is only 52 Years old and has a lot of life to live ! She has a beautiful grandson, two children and her loving husband of 33 years Brian.
Any money raised will go to medical bills as my mom hasn't worked for over a year now and any other future costs that may come up.
Thank you to everyone who has been here for my family and I. This Is an incredibly hard time but with support and prayers I know we will get through this!!!! Thank you everyone !!!!!
- Andrew Kedzierski
- Carl Strand
- William Waara
- Don Kasper
- Barbara Jensen