There are moments in our life when we need to ask for help. For me it’s now as I’m trying to raise money to cover A$60,000 for Keytruda immunotherapy treatments.
I’m Kati, 46 and mother of a lovely funny 2 year old girl, Laney.
I was diagnosed with stage 3, grade 3 Triple Negative Breast Cancer July 2016. My cancer was inoperable so I had to go through 6 months of neoadjuvant chemotherapy, mastectomy and 8 weeks of radiation. My medical team treated the cancer very aggressively with the most toxic chemotherapies available and radiation specifically targeting the skin, only to find out my last week of radiation therapy that the cancer had spread to the skin and I was now stage IV, incurable terminal cancer.
I have been treated with 6 different chemotherapies and am currently on a clinical immunotherapy trial with monthly Nivulomab fusions and an oral daily pill trialled on people for the first time. After a rocky start with the trial with 2 hospitalisations. there was positive developments — until now when the cancer has started to grow again, slower than before, but it’s only a matter of time when the therapy stops working and I will have to look back to other treatments like chemo. As the cancer is so aggressive, we’ll need to be targeted simultaneously by many treatments, most likely with another immunotherapy drug, Keytruda. Unfortunately, it is not listed by the PBS and it comes at a price of A$4,500 per injection every 3 weeks. Only once you have reached A$60K will the pharmaceutical company will subsidise 95% of the costs. This is a massive financial burden for any family.
I’ve been unable to work due to the continuous treatment, increasing fatigue and other side effects. As my mets mainly reside on the skin, I am not “sick enough” for many clinical trials. But it has been aggressive spreading into lungs in less than 2 months, so I don’t have time to wait for the right trial, which means I will need to fund additional immunotherapies out of pocket.
I’ve suffered from the side effects of chemo and strong drugs. I’ve had my skin burned off by radiation and covered by painful skin metastasis lesions. I have been curled up to a ball on the floor wailing from pain and had to be on oxygen in order to breath. But I continue to fight for my family, as my little girl needs a mother. My heart breaks thinking about my little girl growing up without her mum.
Any help is very much appreciated. We thank you with all our hearts for your generosity and healing thoughts.