R534 732 of R3.5 million raised

Stage 4 Metastatic brain tumours have left 54-year-old Lena confined to a government hospital bed.

Just six short months ago, Lena was a vibrant, independent working woman with not a care in the world. Having rebuilt her life after a very stressful divorce, Lena was living on her own and spending weekends with her two children and two granddaughters, and was heavily involved in charity work for the lions and Academia de Ferrrugem, to name a few.

Sadly, Lena has lost the ability to do even the simplest task of fetching herself a glass of water, or even feeding herself. At first Lena started to lose the feeling in her fingers and right hand, this soon progressed onto her whole right arm, but still, the doctor thought that she had suffered a minor stroke. By Early November last year, Lena had two strong seizures and lost mobility in her right leg as well. Lena being the determined person she is, continued to work every day and managed to get a second-hand wheelchair to become more mobile. In the meantime, she managed to book and pay for a private CT Scan, and then the bad news was confirmed, Lena had 4 Metastatic brain tumours and it was due to the pressure from these tumours that Lena was having seizures and had lost mobility and was losing her speech.

As Lena has no private medical aid, she was left in the hands of government hospitals. By the second week of December, Lena could no longer speak at all and her seizures were occurring more frequently, it took 18 hours waiting in the casualty section of the hospital in Johannesburg to have her admitted with a referral of her CT scan and a private doctor. It took a further 2 weeks for her to have her first brain surgery to remove part of the largest tumour, to send for testing and to help alleviate pressure on the brain. Round one of surgery went well and Lena seemed to be on the road to recovery, apart from the fact that the hospital said that the labs “messed up” the biopsy specimen and no results were produced.

It took two weeks for Lena to relapse. On the 1st of January 2018, Lena had two very strong seizures and when she was re-admitted, the family’s worst fears were confirmed, her tumour had grown back and there was also a significant amount of fluid build-up in the brain. From there on it has been a series of mishaps, Lena has been sent for two more CT Scans, the bronchiolar washer came back inconclusive, a Lung biopsy came back negative.

The problem is that the fluid build-up, the brain tumours and the repeated anaesthetics, have taken a very heavy toll on Lena. She is no longer mobile on her left side either and can only vocalise the word NO. The government hospital, do not want to try and take another tissue sample to determine what type of Chemo/radiation treatment she should be on, and they will not proceed with a P.E.T. Scan, which privately costs approximately R30,000.00. In the middle of this nightmare, her boss has decided that he doesn’t need to pay her salary anymore, so she has had no income since December 2017.

Her daughter Nicole had to give up her job to be with her mother at the hospital from 7:00 am in the morning to be able to chat to her doctors and then race off at 13:00 to pick up her daughters from school, and go back to the hospital to care for her mother until 17:00, where she battles peak hour traffic to get home and attend to her children. Her son has had to take large amounts of time off work to also be there mornings and afternoons.

The burden is extreme and impossible at the moment. Lena needs a private hospital at a cost of R3 500 000, to diagnose, operate, and cover Chemotherapy, plus an additional R5 000.00 for additional treatment. If she is released from the hospital, she will require a private nurse for 24 hours, which costs just over R50.000.00 per month, excluding nurse’s meals, travel and all medication and equipment that Lena needs to be at home. Further funds will have to be raised for Physiotherapy and speech therapy, oxygen and if necessary palliative care. The family essentially needs to raise +/- R3.5 million to have access to the best surgeons and oncologists in the private medical field.

Please donate to save Lena’s life, and give back to a woman who has given so much to others.

The family thanks you in advance for any contribution.

For overseas donors, please use banking details below with swift code. Please ensure that the name of the campaign is stated as the reference. Thank you.

Nedbank

Acc 1145 292 569

Branch 198765

Swift code NEDSZAJJ

 

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Donation Total: R10.00