In 2013 our mother, Lena Zerangue, became very sick. She had difficulty breathing, was very weak and couldn’t form complete sentences. Her doctor ordered blood work and a chest X-RAY. That was the beginning of this battle.
At first, they told us she had stage four Lymphoma, because the tumors were in each of her lungs, but the biopsy came back as an auto immune disease called Sarcoidosis. She was put on high doses of steroids, breathing treatments and medication to prevent it from spreading to other organs. Her symptoms were managed with the meds, though she would have frequent “flare ups” that would render her incapable of pretty much anything. Unfortunately, the disease did spread to both of her eyes a year later, then to her stomach last year. So the doctors changed her meds to something stronger.
In May 2018, at the young age of 53 years old, the disease spread throughout her entire spine, putting her spine at risk for collapse and potential paralysis. Further investigation and tests have shown that it has also reached her throat, chest, abdomen, pelvis, around her heart and Aorta artery.
Her doctor made her go on long term disability starting June, 2018; because of this her company has let her go and therefore she lost her health insurance. She had always paid for short and long term disability and the insurance company had originally approved her claim. However, in July, after a mere 5 weeks, they have decided they will no longer provide her with benefits and have denied her claims.
Now, she is in a situation where she has no job, the company she worked for has already filled her position and has no other source of income. Her doctor still strongly insists that it is too dangerous for her to do any type of work due to the risk. She has sought out legal counsel, but that has not to come to fruition yet.
Our mother is a very proud person and doesn’t like asking for help, so we are. She is kind, generous, loving, supportive, and strong. She is very active in her church working with women and does a lot of volunteering. She never hesitates to give her time or attention to anyone in need. Watching our mother go through 5 MRIs, 3 CTs, 2 Ultrasounds, and an endless amount of lab work is very difficult to endure as her children. The debt keeps piling up and the insurance company is refusing help. We are trying to fight it but don’t know how long it will all take.
The money we are asking for is to help not only pay her medical bills (doctor visits, lab work, medicine, ER visits, and much more) but also her regular household bills (i.e. mortgage, electricity, water, trash, internet, etc.). We are supporting her as best we can but it’s not enough. Any and all help is greatly appreciated.
Brittany and Tyler Friedman
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