Stage III Melanoma - Health Clinic

£2,642 of £25,000 goal

Raised by 56 people in 7 months
My name is Philip and I am recently married, in fact, two days before our wedding we found out that I had metastatic Melanoma. Let me back the story up a bit.  I met my wife online.  At the time she was a Filipina, working in Saudi Arabia as a nurse.  In November 2017 Jo agreed to marry me and we began the process of filing the appropriate visa applications.  We received confirmation of Jo's visa acceptance at the beginning of July and doubled our efforts to complete the wedding arrangements.  Towards the end of July 2018 I noticed a large lump under my armpit and decided to see a GP.  The GP examined me and noticed I had swelling near my neck as well as under the armpit and requested a chest x-ray and blood work.  The blood and x-ray redults came back clear, however, the swelling was still present. After a several weeks, I was referred to the Ear, Nose, Throat unit in Shrewsbury Hospital.  The consultant acted quickly and arranged a ultrasound as he suspected Lymphoma.  The ultrasounds scan confirmed there was a suspicious mass in my neck and I was booked in for a biopsy on the mass in my neck.  We waited patiently for the results  and on the 4th of October 2018, 2 days before the wedding, it was confirmed I had cancer, but not lymphoma as originally suspected.  I, in fact, have Melanoma which has spread to my Lymphnodes.  I have since had a CT scan and currently it is believed I am at stage III, which means the cancer has not yet spread beyond the lymphnodes. I will be undergoing immunotherapy in the coming weeks courtesy of the NHS.  So why am I trying to raise money?  Melanoma is a very aggressive and unpredictable cancer.  If the NHS treatment manages to shrink my tumor enough that it could be removed surgically, there is a 50% probability that the cancer will return.  My best hope for living a long life and being able to raise a family with my wife is to build up  my immune system.  I have spent some time studying various promising therapies which are showing promise against melanoma and have decided the Gerson Therapy is my best chance to restore my immune system.  By restoring my immune system my own body will be better equipped to respond to and defeat cancer cells, once the NHS treatment has concluded. The Gerson Therapy will require a 4 week stay at the Northern Baja Gerson Center in Baja Mexico.  During my stay I will received 13 freshly prepared fruit and vegetable juices as well as  therapies such as hyperbaric oxygen, anti-cancer herbal teas and daily medical visits.  The treatment will last 3 - 4 weeks at the center and is then continued at home.   Should I be blessed to reach my target, you will be helping my wife and I to fly out to San Diego, where we will be met by a member of clinic and driven to the facility in Baja Mexico.  We will then spend 3 - 4 weeks at the clinic learning about the Gerson Therapy, whilst I undergo treatment. With this treatment my ability to fight cancer and start a family will be greatly increased.  Without your generosity it will be more likely the melanoma will return and could spread to other organs, making treatment more difficult.  The current situation is that my tumor is inoperable, which without treatment gives me a 1 - 2 year life expectancy.  With immunotherapy or targeted B-RAF treatment the doctors hope to shrink my tumor enough that they can operate and extract the remaining tumor.  I am grateful that the NHS now offer these treatments, as a few years ago they may not have been available to me and my prospects more dire.  These treatments are not without their own, potentially life changing side effects and there is still a high chance that the melanoma will return else where in the body.  I am due to start Immunotherapy in a couple of weeks, this will likely be over 2 years.  My hope is that I will be able to raise the funds to attend the the Gerson Treatment Clinic at the end of February or early March 2019. Thank you for taking the time to read my story and thank you for your kindness and generosity.  My wife and I thank you from the depths of our hearts.
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Last week we had some unfortunate news. It looks like the Nivolumab is not working and the cancer has spread to my brain. As a result I have been given 3 - 6 months. This does not mean we give up. Jo's cousins in the states have sent over Boston C, which is a natural blend of plant extracts that had been seen to be effective against cancer cells. Boston C issue expensive and we don't yet know how much we will need to be taking or for how long. I guess the fight is on!
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February 18 2019
I have had a tough couple weeks, mainly due to finding it hard to maintain energy levels. The disease in my neck has also grown causing a lot of discomfort.
I had a nice surprise on the 10th. A group of friends from work had arranged a sponsored walk to raise money for my Gofundme campaign. I had no idea they were planning this and it was lovely to meet them at the starting point in Newtown despite my energy levels being low.
Thank you to everyone who took part in the walk and everyone who donated, your support and encouragement is very much appreciated.
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22/01/2019
Happy New year everyone. Today we had the results of the PET scan. It isn't the best news as the disease is more extensive than previously thought with signs of cancer in the spleen and bone. On the positive side it confirms that I have made the correct choice in drug Nivolumab.

From the start of the new year I made some adjustments to my diet and have cut out animal protein. There are links with animal protein and cancer, by reducing animal protein I hope to slow or halt the rate of growth to give time for my immune system to repair the damage.
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29/11/2018.

Unfortunately today's treatment didn't go ahead as planned. The message never reached the lab to tell them that I was only taking the one drug, even though I informed the specialist nurse last week, the pre-treatment assessment nurse on Tuesday and receiving two phone calls to confirm yesterday.
I have been asked to return tomorrow, they are going to squeeze me into a very busy schedule.
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Raised by 56 people in 7 months
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