In April of 2015, my Mother Barbara was diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer that had metathesized to her liver. An operation was performed to remove the affected parts of the pancreas, and she began chemo-embolization treatments to moderate the growth of tumors in her liver. Chemo-embolization puts medication directly into the liver to fight the cancer cells, while injecting tiny beads intended to block blood supply to the tumors. The first three of these treatments were somewhat successful. Shortly after her 70th Birthday, during the fourth procedure, it was discovered that the largest of the tumors had found a blood supply outside the liver. Unfortunately, the attempt to block this new source introduced the embolization beads to an artery that also supplied blood to the spinal column. As a result, she is now a paraplegic needing constant care, and the treatment which was the best option for fighting the cancer and prolonging her life is no longer an option.
My Mom and Dad have been retired for several years, and had been getting by supplementing their Social Security income with woodworking and odd jobs my Dad was able to do for friends and people in the neighborhood. Since the accident, my Mom’s need for around-the-clock care has greatly reduced his ability to do these things. This reduction in income combined with her increased medical and living expenses have nearly exhausted the little savings they had going into retirement. My Father has been very diligent following any leads on financial aid but with little success.
Their friends and neighbors have been very kind, helping with meals and sitting with Mom when Dad has to leave and I can’t be there. I do what I can to help, but regretfully my income does little more than keep my own head above water. As resourceful as he is, I know my Dad is already having to choose which monthly payments to make on things like car insurance and utilities. He is coming up short in expenses at a rate of several hundred each month, and around $6000 in medical bills for the cancer treatments are having to be set aside entirely, as will bills for future treatments, but that can’t go on forever.
My Mom and Dad are the best people I know. All I want is for them to enjoy the time they have left together without the constant added fear of financial disaster.
Please help if you can, and please share with anyone else who might be able to help, too. Thank you.
- Kathy Furrow
- Peggy Setter
- Chris Frandina
- Rebecca Berson
- Danielle Frandina
Organizer and beneficiary
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