Living abroad while at times a positive and enriching experience always carries some risk. In the last couple of days a worst case scenario has become a reality for one of our own, with a medical diagnosis that changes everything in a nano-second.
You may know Kristen from Bali, her native California or travelling abroad - but to us she’s family. And if you are talking about a genuine, fun-loving, honest, and loving person you can’t get anyone more so than Kristen. If you’ve had the pleasure of calling Kristen a friend, you’ll know this as much as we do. She’s one in a million and is loved as much as she loves.
On Wednesday 19 September following some symptoms and a chance CT scan, Kristen was presented with the confronting revelation that several masses in her brain were apparent in the scans.
This initial diagnosis while worrying were nothing compared to the next morning’s revaluation. Kristen has 5 visible masses on her brain and the largest, at the front right of the skull, is 5cm in diameter. After ruling out some initial possibilities we were left with option of cysts or tumours.
Unfortunately due to Kristen’s medical history - she fought and beating Melanoma in her early 20s - these new medical developments likely mean the melanoma has reappeared and at a secondary point to the first cancer.
On recommendations from Kristen’s oncologist in the States and after consultation with specialists around the world - the safest immediate plan was to get Kristen home to the States and with a sense of urgency. Unfortunately the large tumour on the right side of Kristen’s brain is impeding this, and we were offered advice that Kristin in unable to fly on a commercial airline to the States and will need to be sent private/MediVac’ed/air ambulance. Due to the pressure this tumour is placing on her brain, the risks of flying on a commercial flight were potentially fatal.
The reason Medi Vac presented as the most attractive option is due to the medical assistance by Doctor/Nurse available en route while flying at a considerably lower altitude. This means the pressure on Kristen's skull caused by the growing tumours was considerably less & safer to get our girl back to home-soil safely.
Travel insurance cover isn’t possible as this is a pre-existing condition and while there are options to medivac her to a closer country with appropriate Western medical attention, her oncologist in the United States has recommended Kristen’s immediate and urgent return.
Kristen is going to give this one a hell of a fight for her life, removing the large tumour and commencing what likely will be an intense & invasive treatment plan - we just need to get her from a to b for that to happen. Any donated funds will go directly to Kristen’s immediate journey home to the States, and ongoing medical costs.
With an overwhelming amount of support we received 65K USD in private donations + an increasing number of GoFundMe contributions.
Kristen was transferred to a Singaporean Hospital under the care of a renowned brain surgeon after being transported on medical advice from Bali by Medi Vac air ambulance on the evening of 22 September.
After discussions with both medical teams in Singapore and the United States it was decided to continue with the plan to Medi Vac air ambulance Kristen urgently to the States.
The response from around the globe has been overwhelming and we cannot thank you all enough. We do need more support - and we are asking for all of your assistance. Every penny is needed - help us continue this miracle operation and make the seemingly impossible happen.
With the love, support and generosity of every single person out there we cried tears of joy confirming Kristen was flown home. With enough financial funds needed to secure a Medi-Vac air ambulance, Kristen was transported from Singapore to the United States arriving Sunday 30 September.
A true testament of how the power of love can overcome challenges no matter how impossible they seem! We want to thank each and every one of you for the helping hand - Kristen is now home receiving support from family and friends got her next challenge and the road ahead and this was made possible by the generosity of every person who donated.
We will leave this page open for several more weeks, seeking any donation big or small to assist with Kristen's fight ahead on home soil!
For your information - this GoFundMe IS IN AUD - and any donations made are AUD.
To note: Sarah Abrahams, Kirsten Dineen's employer is managing the funds on Kristen's behalf as nominated by herself.
*** Please note we are aware on statements for people who are contributing that the statement may show 'Shave for a special lady' - this is simply due to the GoFundMe account being set up for a previous campaign - however this is a new campaign and please be assured all funds are will go directly to this cause and Kristen.
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