A nan who was forced to find £160,000 to fund her own treatment during the pandemic to survive has been told she is now tumour free.
Carol Player had cancerous tumours in her liver which had spread after she was originally treated for cancer in her eye.
At the start of 2020, her only hope was to undergo a promising new drug therapy on the NHS, however, she was left devastated as the Government cancelled trial cancer treatments when the pandemic hit.
This left the 57-year-old having to raise the £160,000 needed to fund the treatment as without it, doctors told her they had no options left.
After Carol’s story featured on the ECHO website in November 2020, she was able to raise enough money through her fundraising page to undergo three of the four treatments.
And so far, the trial ‘chemosaturation’ treatment called Delcath Melphalan has had an incredible effect on her cancer.
So much so, that last week doctors were able to give her some incredible news.
Carol told the ECHO: “My doctor showed my scans from the start of my treatment to the present day and told me there’s no evidence of tumours left in my liver.
“It doesn’t mean I’m completely cancer free because the cancer is from the eye and it’s travelling in my body but everything is stable.
“But the positive news is there’s no evidence of any tumours in the liver.”
The trial treatment took an established chemotherapy drug and administered it straight to the liver, saturating the tumours.
Get a Liverpool Echo newsletter today
The Liverpool Echo sends newsletters on a wide range of topics – including our daily news bulletin, now going out three times a day.
There are others on what’s on, politics, court news, Knowsley, Wirral, and arts & culture, as well as both Liverpool FC and Everton FC.
Signing up is free and it only takes a minute for you to get the biggest stories, sent straight to your inbox.
How to sign up for an Echo Email Update
2) Put your email in the box where indicated
3) Tick as many boxes as you like, for each newsletter you want.
4) Press Save changes and that’s it!
Since her first round of therapy, the tumour’s have consistently shrunk in size to the point now they are almost undetectable.
She said: “If I hadn’t had done what I did in the beginning, where would I be now? We know it’s working, it’s kept me alive.
“The other good news is NICE have now approved the Delcath system now with special conditions.
“They approved it as an excellent treatment so as long as the right team of specialised doctors perform the procedure they’re happy to do it.
“NICE said individual funding for the treatment would still have to applied for from doctors as it’s not on the NHS yet as NHS England haven’t said they will fund it yet. That’s the next step.”
Carol from Sutton Coldfield has been travelling to Clatterbridge Cancer Centre for treatment since first being diagnosed with her illness.
After the fantastic results of her treatment so far, she is now being monitored every two months for any signs of the cancer returning.
She said: “At the moment I’m just on surveillance to make sure everything is kept at bay.
Keep up to date with what’s going on in your area by entering your postcode below
“What I’m frightened of is if I just relax now and not do anything and another one comes back and I haven’t got the funding for that.
“Even if they do fund it I will have this for the rest of my life so I know there has to always be something in my medical fund.”
Carol added: “The ECHO has followed me from the beginning when they said we’re sorry but there’s nothing we can do because it’s not on the NHS. And I fought to find out how to get this treatment.
“Without the fundraising I don’t know where I would have been.
You can donate towards helping Carol cover the cost of her treatment on her son Adam’s Gofundme page by clicking here.
“I didn’t think I’d ever see my son get married and he’s getting married on September 11.
“Alex was going to bring their wedding forward because of my diagnosis and because of the pandemic they couldn’t do that. But because of the treatment I will be there.”