Love & Support for Kieran Brown

$14,933 of $25,000 goal

Raised by 130 people in 8 months
Created August 8, 2017
Kieran Brown is 18 years old and was diagnosed with Stage 4 Hodgkin's Lymphoma in late July with spleen, liver, abdomen and bone marrow involvement. He has a mass on his chest that is 15cm as well as other smaller masses. Kieran already had 1 mass removed from his clavicle as it was quite uncomfortable.  Despite this terrible news, Kieran's oncologist is very optimistic about Kieran's prognosis and treatment.

This has been a very overwhelming and difficult time for Kieran and his family. He lives with his amazing mother Cindy in Nanaimo, BC and has a brother Tyson who lives in Nanaimo as well; and a brother Ethan who lost his battle with brain cancer nearly two years ago.  Cindy is a single mother without any financial support who became a nurse with the help of family, to give her children a better life.  In 2013, Cindy lost her mother and key support system to Glioblastoma Multiforme which is a very serious form of brain cancer.  Seven weeks after her mom's death, Cindy's 18 year old son Ethan was also diagnosed with the same brain cancer and passed away on August 31st, 2015. During Ethan's illness, Cindy injured her knee and has been unable to work since as a result.  She is currently on disability and has been recovering from a long awaited surgery. 

Kieran has started four types of aggressive chemotherapy and is currently being treated for nausea and pain. He is experiencing side effects from the high dose of chemotherapy but is determined to try and share time with friends and loved ones as much as possible.  He is a member of a great hockey community in Nanaimo and lives for the chance to get on the ice whenever he can. Sadly he is unable to skate or play hockey during his illness as the mass on his chest could cause him to have health complications. 

For those who know Kieran, you know that he is such a strong young man, and an example to all of us in kindness, compassion and friendship. I am so blessed to be part of his family and have been asked to keep this page updated so we can all follow his progress and send him love and strength. Kieran is going to make it through this challenge and be back to hockey and living life as he planned in no time. It is important for all of us to have faith and send Kieran positive messages, vibes, love, strength and friendship. 

As this is expected to be a long road to recovery with regular travelling to Victoria and Vancouver for treatment and the only source of income is from Cindy’s disability, we are gratefully accepting donations to help support Cindy and Kieran.  Even if Cindy becomes medically cleared to work again, she is unable to leave her son to do so and as a mother and sole caregiver of this family, we wouldn't expect her to.  Her need is so great and as much as it is hard for her to ask for help, it is necessary for their survival and well-being. These funds will help Cindy and Kieran with travel for treatment, accommodations during treatment, groceries, prescription medication and paying bills while Kieran goes through this long and difficult process.  Cindy is a caregiver of her children but also as a nurse, has been a caregiver for total strangers in their most difficult times. She is a beautiful and giving person who is in a fragile place right now and needs your help so she can care for her son.   If you are able to make a donation, no matter how big or small, we are so appreciative.  If you can only share with others, we are equally grateful. Every bit of support helps so much.  From the deepest part of our hearts, we thank you for your love, well wishes and generosity.  xo
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Update: Kieran has had several treatments since our last update and struggled with the adverse effects of the chemotherapy. Not to mention that Kieran is just recovering from the first treatment when 7 days later he undergoes another treatment. So his body is exhausted! Mentally and emotionally it seems like there’s always more news he has to deal with at each appointment! Thankfully though, Kieran’s Oncologist and nursing team is amazing and has since been able to adapt Kieran’s meds, as his body is much more sensitive to the chemo and requires the most potently available anti-nausea medication for comfort. This has been particularly helpful while Kieran has been having all his treatments in Victoria as well. Kieran requires several days of rest for the days after chemo and then spends as much time as he can with friends and family in between but the long term effects of chemo are becoming more noticeable. Kieran has now had over 8 cycles of chemo (which is equivalent to over 16 treatments) and the accumulation is wearing Kieran’s energy stores down and making him more prone to coughs, colds and flus.
As for the future, we are wrestling with what is to come with more chemotherapy and praying that the PET scan will show the tumours are all shrinking and we are emotionally and mentally trying to prepare ourselves for the Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT). We understand that Kieran will be hospitalized for at least a month and there will be many trips for preliminary scans and appointments previous to the BMT. The plan will be for me to move close to the BMT centre to care for and support Kieran through this overwhelming and scary process. Once we know more details we will let you know in hopes that Kieran might get well wishes and visits when he is strong enough. After the BMT Kieran will have to undergo another 16-18 months of chemotherapy that will be discussed in more detail later but needless to say, Kieran is disheartened by the thought of more chemo!
This has already been a very long road we have walked. At this point it feels like we have a mountain to climb. But we are still fighting for a cure! Our family is grateful beyond what we could ever express and there are more tears than I ever thought I could cry in a lifetime for the loss in my life and the sadness of the pain my children have endured. So I ask if you would please continue to share this so everyone would pray for Kieran and Tyson and our family for healing and strength to overcome what seems insurmountable! We can’t thank you all enough for the blessings you have given us- from Facebook notes of encouragement to financial assistance that helps in so many ways to sending Kieran to a hockey game to get his mind off of chemo treatment to bringing a home cooked meal to our front door. There are so many people who have helped that I will never know that I am sincerely grateful too! You are truly a blessing!
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Treatment 2
Cycle 1 Day 1

Just a update to let everyone know that Kieran had his first treatment of his new chemotherapy protocol this week in Victoria.

This protocol calls for a cycle of chemo on day 1, day 8 and a break on day 15. There will be 3 cycles for Kieran and then a PET scan to check for efficacy of the chemotherapy. Then Kieran will scheduled for a Bone Marrow Biopsy, which we will learn more about at his consultation on Feb 28th in Vancouver. Further to that there will be more chemo but we will not know the extent until we discuss survivorship late into the cure.

This has already been a very long and trying road for Kieran and our family. The majority of patients see the 6 cycles of chemotherapy and are cured of their lymphoma so it has been particularly disheartening for Kieran to realize he is the minority that requires further treatment for this more aggressive, stubborn type of Hodgkins lymphoma. It was a rough start with nausea and vomiting but with that we are hopeful Kieran won’t have to go through it the second time around. Thankfully he overcame it quickly and was able to get out and enjoy the rest of the week. His pain has been a challenge to manage but we have worked very closely with his GP and Oncologist to find medications that have made Kieran more comfortable.

For those who know Kieran - you already know that he is a fighter and even in his outrage for what is happening to his body and his life, he would never let this cancer win! He still gets up and goes out with his friends and plays video games online with them. He doesn’t give up! He doesn’t complain! And if you just met Kieran you’d never know he was going through this horrendous ordeal because that’s his strength. He’s NOT cancer. He has cancer. And with all of your love, prayers and encouragement Kieran is going to win this battle!

So, please keep sending those texts and posts and messages. Even if you don’t get a response because Kieran and I can’t get back to everyone in the midst of all of this- we read every one! And we are forever grateful ❤️
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Update: Kieran went to Vancouver on January 30th for a PET scan to determine how the treatment has been working. On a good note, the mass in Kieran’s chest is nearly gone with some residual scar tissue left. This means that he has been cleared to do some light exercise and most importantly, he can skate!

On a different note, Kieran has tumors reappearing in his neck, clavicle and spleen. The tumours in his neck are larger now than they were in September. The tumours are in the right side of Kieran’s neck, both sides of his clavicle and his spleen. This is causing Kieran to have more pain and a need for more pain medication. The doctors referred to this as a Refractory period which is essentially where the cancer cells have become unresponsive to the current treatment. This is not a new form of cancer; it’s just proving to be difficult and stubborn to treat.

The course of action is still somewhat being determined but what we do know for sure is that Kieran is looking at a new chemotherapy treatment plan. Radiation was discussed but is not an option as he has tumours in multiple areas of his body. At some point, Kieran will also need a Bone Marrow Transplant. We don’t have a lot of details about this but as soon as we know, we will update again.

Cindy, Kieran and Tyson are really grateful for everyone’s support, love and prayers. This is a good news/bad news situation but they will continue to move forward and take one day at a time. Kieran is expected to begin his new chemotherapy treatment on Tuesday in Victoria. Your prayers and positive vibes are really appreciated as they continue on this really difficult path. <3 xo
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Kieran has done really well with his last treatments of chemotherapy. We have managed a really well planned schedule of medications for Kieran to celebrate Christmas with family and friends
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$14,933 of $25,000 goal

Raised by 130 people in 8 months
Created August 8, 2017
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