CANCER is a word that everyone dreads to hear - it hits you hard when it is someone you know, it is devastating if it is someone you love. Here is my sister's story.
My husband, Andrew was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma last September. Lymphoma is the most common form of blood cancer and Andrew was already at stage 4 when he was diagnosed (in bone marrow).
Due to the urgency and aggressiveness of the lymphoma, we had no choice but to go private to avoid any delay to his treatment, however after an excruciating 9 rounds of chemotherapy over 7 months, it was still not enough to put him fully into remission. The doctors at Hong Kong Sanatorium and Queen Mary hospitals worked together to arrange for an urgent stem cell transplant. This was done in May this year and the donor was his sister.
He spent a painful six weeks in an isolation ward at QMH battling mouth sores, fevers and GVHD of the gut. Our hopes were high but short lived. After a PET scan, we received news that the transplant had failed and the lymphoma was now refractory and more aggressive than before.
Andrew's last hope of a cure is a recent FDA-approved treatment in the US called Car-T. In short, this treatment can turn immune system cells into cancer fighting machines, but this is only available in the US and comes with a hefty price tag - the cost of the drug alone is US$400,000. This does not take into account any unforeseen intensive hospital care or additional medical fees which may be incurred.
As you can imagine, the financial and emotional stress on our family with two school age kids has been immense over the past year and we have been fortunate that Andrew’s parents have been able to help up to this point. However, as costs related to Andrew’s treatment and care continue to spiral, this is no longer feasible.
It is only under such stressful circumstances that I am now turning to my network of family, friends and the wider community for financial support during this extremely difficult time in our lives.
Any contribution, no matter how big or small would make a difference to us. We really appreciate your kindness - no words can describe how grateful we are for your generosity