In 2015, at the age of 41, Carolyn was first diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a mastectomy.  At that time, she was told that chemo and radiation were not needed. However, Carolyn still did not feel well and after dozens of doctors' visits, it was finally discovered in late 2018 that the cancer had spread to her ribs, pelvis and lymph nodes. Prior to this, Carolyn was a successful acupuncturist but due to the years of struggling with pain and fatigue, Carolyn could no longer work enough to stay afloat financially and gave up her acupuncture practice in California. Your donations would be greatly appreciated and used toward her travel expenses to see specialists, scans, treatments, transportation, and all practical needs. A more detailed account is below.  Thank you for your consideration!


Carolyn Leigh needs your help. At age 41, Carolyn was the third person in her family to be diagnosed with breast cancer. Her uncle died of breast cancer treatment but her mother has survived.

After a mastectomy in 2015, Carolyn's doctors thought, based on tumor analysis, that her cancer had a low likelihood of spreading and so chemotherapy & radiation were not recommended at the time.

However, after two years of not feeling well and dozens upon dozens of doctors appointments later... a radiologist at UCLA identified in October 2018 what two previous radiologists at another facility had missed as early as 2016... a suspicious lymph node. So a PET scan was ordered and a bone biopsy in November confirmed that Carolyn's original breast cancer had spread to her ribs & pelvis.

Carolyn is herself, a healer, acupuncturist and a very bright medical researcher who has contributed to the health and well-being of thousands of people in the last 16 years, providing care for much of her career in no-cost, low-income clinics and at very affordable rates in her private practice to make acupuncture as accessible as possible.

During much of the last two years Carolyn was only working part-time -debilitated by an autoimmune disease related to the cancer (para-neoplastic-systemic sclerosis), by repeat infections and excruciating rib pain related to the cancer recurrence that were leaving her bedridden for days each month and in acute pain for 2-8 weeks at a time. Carolyn was also diagnosed in March 2018 with a rare genetic disease termed periodic paralysis after an episode in Dec 2017 had left her unable to use her hands or climb stairs. The treatment for this muscle disease was working wonders and Carolyn finally thought she had moved passed her major health issues.

Long-story short, Carolyn has been physically struggling for several years -depleting her financially & she really needs your help to keep going. The side effects from the meds are leaving her battling arthritis, nausea, fatigue & brain fog so working full-time or even part-time, at the moment, is still challenging.

Bone metastasis is generally considered incurable but manageable. Carolyn's oncologists are optimistic and she is currently looking into more comprehensive somatic & genetic tumor analysis ($6,500-10,500) to understand why her cancer spread so the best herbal and pharmaceutical approaches can be determined, as well as new clinical trials. Carolyn feels her best hope for long-term survival is a new phase II clinical trial at the National Cancer Institute that would amplify her immune system's ability to identify the tumor mutations and destroy the tumors.

Similar in function to the infamous BRCA genes, Carolyn carries at least two poorly researched mutations in genes (linked to breast cancer) that code for DNA repair. What that means is she is more susceptible to cancer because her body doesn't repair DNA damage with the same efficiency as others.

As anyone who knows Carolyn can attest, she is a keen researcher who is motivated to help all people. She now wants to understand the genetics behind her family's cancer syndrome. As the eldest grandchild on her mother's side she hopes that her ongoing & future push for research will be able to help her sister, two nieces, cousins and their children the fate that has befallen her uncle, mother & herself.

Your donations will go towards Carolyn's backlog of and ongoing medical bills, scans, treatments, herbal supplements, genetic testing & travel expenses for clinical trials & to see specialists outside of her insurance plan.
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Carolyn Leigh 
Crest Hill, IL
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