Help us- Let's do it for Joey!

Joe has been battling Ulcerative Colitis and it's many complications and side effects for the last 9 years.  During this time, he's endured and survived 14 major surgeries, starting with the first one in 2005 where they removed his entire colon and rectum after a 2 month stay at Cedar's Sinai Los Angeles CA Hospital.  

The first surgery in 2005 marked the beginning of a new chapter in his life that would span the next 9 years: countless emergency room visits, surgeries, outpatient procedures, medications, uncertainty, depression, managing doctor appts, overwhelming financial hardships, researching specialists and acting as the main point of contact for the healthcare industry - all while he was sick and battling chronic pain in his tailbone from Osteomyelitis caused by a hole in his J-pouch.    He's a warrior but it's time he shares his story and gets the help he needs to continue on and find the path to healing.  

Joe was recently discharged from the Cleveland Clinic 5 weeks ago after being hospitalized due to the pain from the Osteomyelitis in his spine & a major fistula (hole) in his Jpouch (a colon made from his small intestines).  

The Cleveland Clinic is a teaching hospital and since Joe's complications are so rare, they performed an experimental procedure in the hopes of closing the hole without giving him the permanent Illeostomy bag.  He spent 4 weeks with a pump in his stomach in extreme pain to drain the absess with a sponge placed in the 2.5 inch hole in an attempt to close it.  Even with all our prayers and the best team of doctors, it didn't work.      

As of today, he needs to find the right antibiotic to treat the infection in his spine, so they can then schedule and perform the final major surgery of giving him the Illestomy bag. 

Joe needs help to prepare for this final surgery.   He needs to raise money for the outstanding doctor bills, insurance deductibles, medical costs for medications, extended care from specialist, traveling to and from the Cleveland Clinic for this next big surgery and everyday expenses to keep his life going.   

Joe has been out of work for months at a time over the last 9 years and for the last 6 months consecutively.   Work isn't the only part of Joe's life that's been dramatically altered. Before this current setback, he got engaged last year to a wonderful and amazing woman who is his best friend and life partner in all of this.  Unfortuantely, his health and finances take priority over all else so the wedding is currently put on hold until he gets better.    He's fighting to get better so he can have the life that is waiting for him on the other side of the next big surgery.   

Your donations and kindness will help him prepare for this next big surgery and more importantly - manage the stress he's under so he can restore his state of mind to stay positive and focus on what lies ahead.   

He is a fighter whose brave enough to ask for help.  We are so grateful for your support and hope to report a full recovery after this long battle.   We have faith in our hearts.  

We give thanks for our many blessings.  
Joey's Family



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Joseph Elmo 
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