02/09/1945 — 10/06/2010
My mom had a 5 ½-year battle with melanoma. Her primary doctor would not send her to a dermatologist, as it was on her toe. He sent her to a podiatrist, who doesn’t normally do biopsies. This process took 6 months for her to get that diagnoses, to which her primary stated it was just a little bit of cancer, no big deal. After a toe amputation and lymph dissection, she had it throughout her body! So much for a little bit of cancer!
I spent the following year battling doctors and insurance companies, having to learn what our rights were. After more than a year, we finally had her in the proper hands, but being Stage IV, they were just trying to control it. Unfortunately, it ended up in her brain and spinal fluid, and she lost her ability to walk. She was gone within 2 months.
Mom never went into the sun, and yet we all think it’s only caused by the sun, which is wrong. She had a regressive melanoma that started inside. She was a trooper for a very long time and suffered a great deal. After 17 months of interferon (which does not work), she endured at least three or four clinical trials through The Angeles Clinic.
This is a horrific disease, and education needs to start with children. Parents need to set an example. It is my goal to bring awareness to all who I know and meet in hopes they find treatment options that work and better yet a cure.
God Bless those of you who have been through this or are currently going through it.
Gina Brindisi-Eso, daughter