Elisa Martin's Story
"They told me that there was nothing else that could be done for me, and that my family should prepare for my funeral. That was in November of 2010. I never thought that I would be diagnosed with Stage III uterine cancer at age 34. When everyone else gave up on me, Mary Crowley stepped in and gave me hope and I now feel better than I have in the last two years. The others said that my tumor was too big to treat and they did not see any options for me...they just shook their heads at me when I asked what could be done. When I came to Mary Crowley, they did not make me feel this way, instead they said we are going to try this and if that doesn't work, we will try something else. The physicians at Mary Crowley have never shaken their heads at me.
When I got sick, I eventually lost my job and had to get on disability. I have to use more than 3/4 of my disability to pay for private insurance, and I don't qualify for most assistance programs. I'm stretched to the limit and there really is not much to live on. Mary Crowley's Benevolence Program allows me to get the care and medication that I need without having to worry about how am I going to be able to eat this month or put gas in my car so that I can make it to my appointments. Without the help of the Benevolence Program, I would not be able to make it to the clinic for treatment."
Fast-forward from 2010 to December 2015 to check on the progress of Elisa Martin...
We shared Elisa’s story a few years ago, that she was diagnosed with cancer in April 2009, just after her 34th birthday. Elisa took a turn for the worse in November 2010, and doctors told Elisa’s family to start planning her funeral. Thanksgiving 2010 left little HOPE for Elisa – until she was referred to Mary Crowley. It is now Thanksgiving 2015, and Elisa feels good and is without cancer! However, Elisa has not been without some struggles. First, Mary Crowley was recently informed that her investigational therapy, keeping her cancer at bay, was no longer available because the clinical trial was being cancelled. It was not cancelled due to the therapy being ineffective, because it was effective; rather, the pharmaceutical company was advancing the therapy to full FDA approval, and further testing was no longer required. Nevertheless, there would be a gap of time between the trial closure and when it would be available to community oncologists. Mary Crowley contacted the pharmaceutical company and discussed the critical need for Elisa to continue this therapy during the time gap. Under a special arrangement, they agreed to continue providing it to Mary Crowley for Elisa -- another WIN for Elisa! Secondly, her monthly secondary insurance increased over $700 per month, and she could no longer afford to maintain it. But with the grace of Mary Crowley’s Benevolence Program, she has been able to keep afloat.
Looking at Elisa, who just turned 40, no one would ever suspect she has so valiantly fought cancer for the past six years. Says Elisa, “I never imagined this milestone. I have HOPE and am determined that cancer will not kill me. Mary Crowley has given me not just great treatment but also remarkable results!”
While Elisa has seemingly had doors closed at multiple junctures during her cancer journey, others have opened. Mary Crowley is privileged to provide HOPE and support for Elisa and all cancer patients who are in need of an open door.
See Elisa's video story Here.