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Teagan's Medical Expenses

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(Script of above video:)
Hello.  I'm Teagan Brody.  I'm a single mom, a daughter... and I'm dying.  I know a lot of the campaigns out here on GoFundMe start out like this, right?  However, instead of me creating this page just to ask for money from complete strangers, I want to also use this to create awareness of the particular disorder that's killing me so that people can become more educated and avoid having this happen to their mothers, sisters, daughters or even themselves.

I have what is called Pernicious Iron-Deficiency Anemia.  Sounds pretty harmless, right?  According to an article in the New York Times, over 10% of the females in America, adolescent aged through age 49, suffer from this disorder.  Of course, it affects males and people of all other age groups as well.

What's the big deal?  So you don't have enough iron in your blood.  So what?  That's no big deal.

That's what I thought... for years.  And I'm not alone in this way of thinking.  But the difficulty is I was wrong.

A little over a year and a half ago, I came close to dying from this thing.  A few months before then, I was working three jobs.  As I mentioned above, I'm a single mom, so being tired was a given.  Then I started getting sick - a lot!  I became allergic to just about everything I ate.  I developed arthritis.  My hair broke off.  My vision was failing.  I was suddenly allergic to toothpaste and mouthwash (I had to use baking soda to brush my teeth).  I eventually got so weak I couldn't even walk to the restroom on my own.

My family got me to our General Practitioner, Dr. Mark Mlcak, and he took blood to find out what on earth could be causing this.  At about 3:00 AM the next morning, he got a call fromt he lab tech processing the sample.  The tech was distraught and he instructed my doctor to get me to the emergency room for an immediate blood transfusion.  Fortunately for me, Dr. Mlcak decided to consult with a colleague of his before calling my family because he thought something didn't sound quite right with the tech's idea.

That's when oncologist Dr. Jairo Olivares stepped in and saved my life.  You see, he'd lost his brother to Anemia and he recognized the symptoms.  (Talk about fate... Dr. Olivares just so happened to be the same oncologist who'd successfully led my mother through her battle with breast cancer over a decade earlier.)  He informed me I had been living with the disorder uncorrected for so long my body was no longer able to absorb iron from the foods I ingested.  Even oral iron tablets would no longer work.  He said what I needed were Iron Infusion treatments, which is basically Iron in liquid form being injected directly into my blood stream intravenously.

I had the first treatment and I cannot describe to you how much better I felt after that one treatment.  It was like I was suddenly alive again after having been walking around like a ghost for years!  I wasn't allergic anymore - to anything!  I no longer suffered from arthritic pain.  My hair and nails grew back.  My vision actually improved.  I felt like a new person.  And after the second treatment, I felt invincible.

The only problem is Dr. Olivares recommended I have several treatments per year.  Simply put, I cannot afford that.  In fact, to be honest, I still owe a little for the second treatment.  (Each treatment costs over $5,000.00!)

I had thought I was fine with just the two treatments, but now the allergies have started up again.  I'm exhausted all the time and the pain in my bones is sometimes excruciating.  It's so bad I'm finding it more and more difficult to make it through each day.  I'm weak and worn out by the end of the day, even if I am able to take breaks to rest, so I know I am slipping again.  The doctor, of course, recommends another treatment immediately.  But I just can't afford it.

So, I need some help.

I've always worked, ever since I was a teenager.  Asking for help isn't something I'm good at.  But I think I've come up with something I can do to make it so I'm not just asking for money because, like so many others out there, I didn't realize what a mistake I was making by not taking the doctor seriously enough all those years ago when he said my Iron was a little low.

In my "spare" time over the past few years, I've been working on a project - a book series.  I've been querying agents for a few months in hopes of landing a publishing deal.  But now it's crunch time and I don't have years to wait for a response, which is sometimes how long that can take.  Instead, I've decided to go ahead and put the first book of the series for sale as an eBook to try to raise some funds for treatment that way.  However, for anyone who donates at least one dollar through this GoFundMe campaign, I will forward a download of the eBook to whatever email address is provided.

Who knows?  Maybe folks will like the book enough for it to catch on?  Of course, I know that's every author's dream.  But I don't think anyone wants to die just to get their work out there.  However, this is my last chance and it's all I can think of to do since working is no longer an option.

Anyway, I'd like to thank you for reading this.  Whether you choose to donate here or not, I hope I've at least made you aware of just how dangerous such a simple thing as Anemia can become if it's ignored - which is what most people do.  And please, if you have a relative or friend, or even if it's you who's been diagnosed with any form of Anemia, make sure steps are taken to correct the issue or at least to manage it.  I wouldn't want anyone enduring what I went through before - just as I don't ever want to go through it again, myself!  I just want people to be aware.

Again, thank you so much for your attention and your help.


Teagan Brody


Teagan Brody
Richardson, TX

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