Fast forward to June 2016... She started experiencing some sinus pressure and pain on the right side of her face. She saw a physician's assistant at her primary doctor's office who diagnosed her with shingles and began treatment. The treatment did nothing for her and the pain increased. She went back to see her regular doctor. He agreed with the shingles diagnosis and put her on antibiotics as well in case she had a sinus infection.
The pain continued to increase and she began losing feeling on the right side of her face. Because of the numbness, she inadvertantly scratched the cornea on her right eye and an infection set in. Her right eye has been the only eye with good vision as her left eye has been considered 'legally blind' since birth.
Her doctor sent her to a neurologist who stated the shingles could have gotten into her nerve causing trigeminal neuralgia which made her eyelid droop and the muscles in her cheek to constrict. This also caused the muscles in her right eye to contract and her eye was pulled out of alignment guaranteeing vision loss. She can no longer see to drive, read, or do the crossword and soduku puzzles she loves.
She saw doctor after doctor until finally one of them ordered a CT/MRI of her sinuses. They found a mass.
In September 2017, she traveled to Minnesota with her husband, Skip, to be seen at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester. Her daughter, Tonya, (who lives 4 hours North of the Mayo Clinic) had appointments set up with the neurology department. After additional scans, bloodwork, and two biopsies, it has been determined that Char has a very rare form of cancer that likely stemmed from the skin cancer back in 2015. These cancer cells have penetrated her skin tissues to the nerves in her face. They have wreaked havoc eroding bone and tissue. The nerve damage is permanent and extremely painful.
This cancer is incurable but it is treatable. Char will begin 7 weeks of treatment at the Mayo Clinic in October. She will undergo 5 days a week of radiation and 1 day a week of chemotherapy. She and one caregiver (Skip and Tonya will be tag-teaming) will be staying free of charge at the Hope Lodge, sponsored by the American Cancer Society. However, there is a waiting list of about 8-12 days after her first treatment date that we will be responsible for hotel stays. The Hope Lodge will provide vouchers for discounts to help, but we will have to pay the rest.
First and foremost, we are asking for your prayers. If you wish to make a financial donation to help with lodging, meals, and transportation costs, we welcome your generosity and thank you for your support.
If you know Char, you know she is the kindest, most giving soul who has often dropped everything to come to the aid of her friends and family without hesitation. Any support you can offer, whether emotional, financial, or spiritual, is so appreciated. Thank you!
**Leftover funds will be donated to the Hope Lodge in Rochester, MN**
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