My Sister Bianca was rushed to Emergency with loss of movement and feeling on the Left side of her body and a splitting headache. A MRI later confirmed that a tumour had grown in her right frontal lobe. A few years earlier Bianca’s son Aston had already been through the battle of a brain tumour (thankfully was benign), but the emotions of that devastating diagnosis was still very much real and raw.
After being hospitalized and meeting with the surgeon to discuss the removal, emotions were quite high and everyone was scared and emotional as expected. Surgery took place and after a nerve racking wait for the results of what this tumour was, our worst fears came along. It was found to be Stage IV Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM), the most aggressive brain cancer possible of which the survival rate is very dim. The average survival rate whilst undergoing the normal treatment of intense Radiation and Chemotherapy is 12 to 15 months. The treatment of this particular cancer is extremely hard, due to the Blood Brain Barrier (BBB) which is designed to protect our brain and keep out all the toxins, but when treating cancer it acts as a barrier that inhibits the treatment from working as well as it does in other parts of the body.
Bianca has completed her 6 weeks of intense Radiation and Chemo treatment a month ago. With high hopes, Bianca had another MRI to see how the treatment had gone. Unfortunately, the scans have showed that the tumour has re-grown. As you can imagine this news has been very hard to swallow as all the thoughts of what the future would look like now runs through our minds. Bianca is now on a double dose of Chemo to help fight this.
During this treatment, there has been some other struggles as well, including losing hair which in light of everything seems like only a little stressful but can be quite confronting to say the least. We held a family get together to shave it all off, and one by one (unplanned), all her Son's wanted to show their support by going through it with Bianca, so by the end of the night, almost everyone in the household had a new haircut in support of Bianca so she would feel more comfortable.
This aggressiveness of this tumour has forced us to make a decision urgently, hence why we have started this GoFundMe page. After many tears and discussions, we as a family cannot accept that this treatment is the only way to go. We are all positive that she can fight this, and as a family will support as much as we can. We are now looking at other options for treatment that can help beat this, however, this is not available in Australia but overseas. The price tag of this venture is in excess of $100,000 US, but in reality, we can’t put a price tag on life.
We have read many success stories coming out of these research centres in the fight against GBM’s and hoping that Bianca will also be one of those success stories. We are seeking help to raise these funds in hope of being able to have a long and happy life with Bianca a part of that.
Bianca has just married her love Tim on new year’s eve 2020, which has joined their 2 little families into one big family. They have 6 children between them: Kaiden, Elias, Aston, Lachlan, Charli and Alexis. We are hopeful that this treatment will be able to keep this family all together for the longest time possible. She has been serving her community for more than 10 years in the Police Force working most recently in crime prevention and education to make this community a better place for the next generation, which she would like to continue to make a difference in.
So here’s to 2021, with assistance from these funds we hope to make this year a hopeful one with a life changing difference for our family.
- Anthony Johns
Organizer and beneficiary
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