Hello everyone. This is Donna, Chris' friend, partner, and personal nurse. To his FRIENDS, RELATIVES, and those who are asking about him and those whose hearts we are knocking on. Here's his story:
January this year, he's noted to have DRY COUGH with mild to moderate PAIN on his LEFT CHEST and BACK. But being the dedicated Police Officer that he is, he ignored those symptoms and continued on with his job even after I convinced him that he needs medical attention. He has a very ACTIVE LIFESTYLE. A dedicated RUNNER/HIKER. NOT A DRINKER. NEVER A SMOKER. It was late March when he noticed that, besides his earlier symptoms, he's having DIFFICULTY OF BREATHING simply just by walking. It was then that he sought medical help.
April 2, we went to PNPGH to seek consult. His Chest X-Ray (picture attached) revealed a collapsed left lung. He's diagnosed to have MASSIVE PLEURAL EFFUSION of his LEFT LUNG. He was then admitted at PNPGH for management. On April 12, he transferred to St. Luke's Medical Center QC for his THORACENTESIS (fluid aspiration). Aspiration was done twice (April 12 and 13) with a total of almost 3 liters of fluids aspirated. Various tests was done on the said fluids. His doctors were ruling out Tuberculosis versus Malignancy as the cause of his Pleural Effusion. His CXR was also routinely monitored. Few hours after his 2nd Thoracentesis on April 13, PNEUMOHYDROTHORAX (air and fluids) was seen on his Chest X-Ray (see attached photo). High flow oxygen was continuously given to him at 10LPM via Face Mask with Rebreather but the repeat CXR on the morning of April 14 showed no response from the Oxygen therapy. He was immediately scheduled for CHEST TUBE THORACOTOMY that day (Chest X-Ray photo immediate post-operation attached). After the operation, his Chest Tube was hooked to a thoracic suction machine to help remove air and the remaining fluids on his thorax. In total, fluids aspirated from his Thoracentesis, from the thoracic suction machine, and from his Chest Tube bottle drainage while at home reached a massive 6 liters.
On April 22nd, his doctor broke the sad news to us. As per the result of his tests, he's diagnosed to have PRIMARY LUNG ADENOCARCINOMA, STAGE IV (MALIGNANT EFFUSION, LEFT). This is extremely difficult to swallow and is giving sleepless nights to Chris up until now. An air leak on his Left Lung was suspected. He was discharged on April 23rd with a Chest Tube in place connected to a sterile bottle since air is still present on his thorax (PNEUMOTHORAX).
To check if the cancer cells has spread to nearby organs, Chris had his head, chest and upper abdomen CT-SCAN done (April 27). Results revealed MULTIPLE NODULES on his LEFT LUNG and THORAX. Thankfully, none was seen on his other organs. And no air leak was found. His Chest Tube was then removed on May 2nd by his surgeon. Thankfully, his TOTAL BODY BONE SCAN done on May 4th revealed negative for metastasis but showed a post-traumatic inflammation on his 7th left rib probably due to his previous operation. EGFR testing results showed a negative mutation which means Chris is no longer a candidate for this type of targeted therapy while ALK test showed a POSITIVE result. That is why I used the letters A-L-K for this campaign for better reference. As per his oncologist, ONLY 8-10% OF LUNG CANCER PATIENTS ARE ALK POSITIVE. A RARE TYPE. Which is why research on this type of cancer, as well as its treatment of choice are rare and extremely expensive. What we know is that, it is common on Chris' type: NON-SMOKER, LIVING A HEALTHY/ACTIVE LIFESTYLE. You can search online for ALK for better understanding of Chris' cancer.
It's true that GOD WILL PUT THE RIGHT PEOPLE IN YOUR PATH exactly on the right moment you need them. You may not realize it but GOD may have USED YOU AS AN INSTRUMENT TO HELP US. From Chris' attending physician who's extremely emphatic on his situation, his nurses who took extra care of him while he's admitted, the nursing aides who made us feel at home during his stay, the ward clerks who guided me on what to do to lessen Chris' financial burden, interns/MROD/PFOD/SROD who assisted us, CSS staff who went out of their way to help me purchase sterile bottles as out-patient even if it's only sold on their in-patients. And our friends and families who never stopped caring and understanding. It is indeed true what the bible says, "ASK and IT WILL BE GIVEN TO YOU; SEEK and YOU WILL FIND; KNOCK and THE DOOR WILL BE OPENED TO YOU."
I'd like to GIVE BACK to Chris because he SELFLESSLY helped me and my family, and other people even if we didn't ask for it. HE REALLY WANTED TO BE BACK ON HIS FEET AGAIN TO RUN and HIKE, TO CONTINUE BEING THE KIND and HUMBLE PUBLIC SERVANT THAT HE IS, and TO CHANGE HIS LIFESTYLE HOLISTICALLY FOR THE BETTER. Chris is not perfect, he admittedly made a lot of mistakes in his life but I firmly believe that anyone deserves a second chance in life. To correct all his mistakes, to ask forgiveness to those he have wronged, to be a living witness to God's healing power and forgiveness, and to serve God with all his might.
Your PRAYERS and MONETARY ASSISTANCE for his upcoming series of THERAPIES, MEDICATIONS, and FURTHER TESTS would be of great help to us. HE'S IN NEED TO START ON CRIZOTINIB (XALKORI) 250mg CAPSULE TWICE A DAY for 1 month initially but his doctor is planning to continue his medication for 3 months if with normal blood levels. THIS MEDICATION IS EXTREMELY EXPENSIVE HERE IN THE PHILIPPINES AMOUNTING UP TO 7,600 PESOS OR $152 PER CAPSULE (1,400,000 pesos or $28,000 for 3 months). His COLLEAGUES have already CHIPPED IN for his medical expenses and Chris has already LOANED a LARGE AMOUNT OF MONEY to FINANCE his TREATMENT but ALL THESE HAVE BEEN USED UP. WE ARE KNOCKING ON YOUR HEARTS TO HELP CHRIS RAISE FUND FOR HIS MEDICATIONS. It will help lessen the heaviness he's feeling right now. Feel free to send us a message. HE NEEDS WORDS OF ENCOURAGEMENT too. Rest assured your messages and assistance will reach Chris. ANY REFERRAL TO CANCER ORGANIZATIONS or ANY CHARITY PROGRAMS WOULD BE OF GREAT HELP TO US.
WE'D LIKE TO THANK those who have sent us their WORDS of CONCERN for Chris and most importantly, their PRAYERS for Chris' RECUPERATION. WE'D LIKE TO ACKNOWLEDGE those who have REACHED OUT TO HELP Chris FINANCIALLY. His relatives, friends, batchmates from Class Marangal, his colleagues, my friends and colleagues. MAY GOD ABOVE BLESS YOU A HUNDRED TIMES. We will surely PAY IT FORWARD and SPREAD KINDNESS like the fire in our hearts with the hopes of him being healed, cancer-free, and back on his feet.
I'D LIKE TO SPREAD AWARENESS TO YOU AS WELL. PLEASE DO NOT IGNORE A COUGH OF MORE THAN A WEEK AND/OR YOUR OCCASIONAL DIFFICULTY OF BREATHING. BE EXTRA ALERT IF CANCER RUNS IN YOUR FAMILY BECAUSE, UNFORTUNATELY, YOU'RE AT HIGHER RISK. Chris' youngest brother had lymphoma and is now cancer-free. Keep in mind that Chris is living an active lifestyle. We're considering that SECOND-HAND SMOKE INHALATION and his 12-hour NIGHT SHIFT DUTY for almost 10 YEARS might have contributed to his diagnosis. AND PLEASE DON'T TAKE FOR GRANTED YOUR ANNUAL PHYSICAL EXAM.
THANK YOU for taking time to read this post.
(Attached are some of his photos from hospital admission to discharge, his significant laboratory results, his recuperation at home, and his activities prior to being diagnosed with Lung Cancer.)
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