Woman’s dream of starting a family broken because the NHS cannot treat her cancer
Katie Symmons, 37, was able to start private treatment after she was told she only had a few months to live after the heartbreaking discovery of two new tumors.
Image: BRAIN TUMORS RESEARCH)
A woman with incurable brain tumors has started fundraising for access to private treatment in a bid to prolong her life.
Devastated Katie Symmons from Farnborough, Hampshire was diagnosed with grade 3 meningioma brain tumor in October 2014.
She was told she wouldn’t survive until Christmas that year, but seven years later, the brave 37-year-old still refuses to stop fighting.
Now she has been told there is no more treatment available on the NHS – meaning her dreams of having children with her husband, Steven, have been crushed.
The only treatment currently available is a chemotherapy drug called Avastin, which is only available in private. It costs £ 6,900 for each three week treatment cycle.
Brain Tumor Research / SWNS.com)
She has now decided to raise money in the hopes that privatization may extend her life, HampshireLive reports.
Katie said: “I was not aware of the gravity of the situation, I had such a major brain operation that my brain was totally disrupted for a while.
“I think if I had been with it and believed it, I don’t think I would be here. I always believed I would walk again and I did.”
Things picked up when Katie and Steven tied the knot in June 2016, after spending time in a rehab unit in Wokingham. They have been together for 11 years.
In April of this year, she learned that she had two more new tumors and the original tumor was growing again.
CEREBRAL TUMORS RESEARCH)
This time, doctors said her surgery was not an option and again said she had months to live.
“It was devastating. I’m only 37, I don’t really want to die and that would be my only option, I’ve had all the treatments the NHS can give,” Katie continued.
“My husband Steven has been there by my side to take care of me for the past six years as I have fought every battle in my brain tumor journey.
“You can’t have that kind of love and all I’m asking is more time with him.
“Steven and I have always wanted to have kids, but I know that won’t happen now. My dream is to reach the age of 40 so that I can spend more time together and visit Disneyland. “
In hopes of gaining access to this private treatment, Katie created a fundraising page.
Brain Tumor Research / SWNS.com)
Katie said: “I am receiving benefits because I have not been able to work since I was diagnosed and Steven is my full time caregiver.
“Sometimes I can have seizures and I don’t feel well, I can’t go back to work and expect other staff to take over, so that option was taken away from me.
“This is a huge sum that we cannot afford, so I am being asked to urge strangers to donate to prolong my life. It cannot be fair, can it?”
So far a whopping £ 6,200 has been raised for Katie’s treatment.
She added, “I am so humbled, their kindness and generosity is incredible.”
Thanks to donated funds and funeral savings her mother raised, Katie was able to begin the private treatment which she says leaves her in “excruciating” joint pain.
“The last six years have been horrible,” admitted Katie. “It’s just a roller coaster of emotions because you’re told you’re not going to survive six and a half years ago, and then you’re left paralyzed. It’s just horrible.
“It has been a very long and difficult journey, but I will continue to do it. “
Katie’s online donation page can be found online here.