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Help Jamie Griffiths Ride The Tumour Wave
$9,795 raised
147 contributors
0 days left
Ended Dec 28, 2014
Please support father of three Jamie Griffiths with his battle against stage four Glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer. More ...

 

Jamie’s Story

If you think you’ve been having a bad day, bad week or even bad year, spare a thought for Jamie Griffiths.
Last July, the 38 year-old father of three had just gotten home from a surf when he noticed a slight tingle across his lip – kind of like the feeling you get when there’s a stray hair brushing your skin, just a little feather-light tickling sensation. Thinking nothing of it, Jamie headed down to met some friends for a drink at the local surf club.
On his way, Jamie started to experience seizures that racked his body and took his breath away. He managed to make it home, but as his family were out at the time he alerted his neighbours who called an ambulance.
He was rushed to Lismore Hospital before being transferred to Gold Coast Hospital after an MRI showed a tumour on Jamie’s brain.
An operation was hastily arranged and doctors were able to remove part of the tumour for further examination, but later realised they had tackled tumour from the wrong angle. Jamie and his family faced an anxious wait as another operation was scheduled for a week’s time.
Then prior to the second operation, Jamie’s Dad had a heart attack in his sleep and passed away. Due to the severity of Jamie’s condition, family members and doctors made the difficult decision to withhold the tragic news from Jamie until after the operation. As his dad had been a bit off colour a few days prior, Jamie just assumed his Dad hadn’t been to visit as he had the flu.
The morning Jamie awoke from his operation he asked where Dad was, and his sister Cherie was forced to explain that he had passed away.
As Jamie struggle with the loss, pathology took the tumour to have it graded and determine which form of brain cancer he had. Two days later, Jamie was informed that it was a stage four Glioblastoma – the most advanced stage of the most aggressive form of brain cancer. He was advised that it was terminal and no matter what treatment option he chose, there was no way they would ever get all of the tumour. He was informed his life expectancy was six to 18 months.
Jamie was discharged to attended his Dad’s funeral, then began six weeks of intense radiation and chemo treatment.

The Battle Begins

Jamie and his loving partner Rachel and their three daughters Jessica (15), Ella (9) and Maddy (3) were now facing a fight of epic proportions.
As a self-employed tiler with no income insurance or major assets to fall back on, Jamie and his family suddenly found themselves relying on a disability pension to make ends meet. But while money was in short supply, displays of unity weren’t and messages of support for Jamie started to flow in. Born in Tasmania then raised on the Gold Coast before moving to Evens Head, Jamie had amassed friends across Australia and those buddies began rallying around the popular and unassuming family man in his time of need.

The Evans Heads surfing fraternity hosted several fundraisers. Jamie’s partner, mum and two sisters began referring to themselves as ‘Team Jamie’ and attended his appointments with him. The love flowing his way lifted Jamie’s spirits, but it was a brief respite. Jamie’s sister Cherie explained;
“Jamie had been on chemotherapy and steroids since diagnosis in July. Ongoing appointments and MRI scans kept an eye on Jamie’s progress to ensure the tumour wasn’t growing. Unfortunately in March, a routine MRI showed signs of abnormality.  It was decided to wait and see what the next scan showed in April. After a lovely family reunion over Easter weekend, Jamie had his scan. The results showed the tumour had definitely grown, and was no longer responding to chemotherapy.”
“When Jamie is stressed or tired he suffers seizures.  Although quite conscious and aware of what is happening, he looses the ability to speak for a period of time and his right arm movement is constricted. When Jamie heard the tumour was growing again, he had a severe seizure that lasted for an hour.”  
An appointment had already been scheduled with Dr Brindha Shivalingham, a surgeon in Sydney. Though this page and associated fundraisers, your kind donations helped us raise enough for Jamie to recieve the treatment he needed. Dr Brinda did a magnificent job, but unfortunately that's not the end of the story. 

Because gliblastomas have finger-like tentacles - Jamie describes it as being like an octopus straddling his brain - they are very difficult to completely remove. This is particularly true when they are growing near the parts of the brain that control important functions such as language and coordination, such as in Jamie’s case.  Dr Brinda was able to remove most of the tumour with miraculously only minor effect on Jamie's speech, but just weeks later a follow up scan showed the tumour had not only returned – a second tumour had also appeared. 



How You Can Help

Fighting brain tumors isn't easy or cheap, and Jamie's family have been struggling to afford all the associated costs. With limited avenues left they've been exploring alternative treatments, but these come at a price.

Jamie’s sister Cherie explains; “Jamie was a self-employed tiler and hasn’t been able to work since it all happened. He doesn’t own a home or have any major assets, is now on a disability pension. Asking for help isn’t something that comes naturally for us, but if it can buy us more time with Jamie it’s something we have to try.”

By donating to Jamie’s fund you’re not only buying Jamie a little hope, you’re also buying him piece of mind so he can spend less time worrying money, and more precious quality time with his young family.

Prognosis for brain cancer is usually reported in years of "median survival." This is the time at which an equal number of patients do better and an equal number of patients do worse. With an equal rate of incidence and mortality – the number of those who get it, and the number who die from it – Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) is a brain cancer death sentence. Jamie understand this.

For adults with more aggressive glioblastoma, median survival is about 14.6 months and two-year survival is 30%. Those aren't great odds. However, a 2009 study reported that almost 10% of patients with Glioblastoma may live five years or longer.

Jamie wants to be part of that ten percent.

His daughters want him to be part of that ten percent.

His partner, mum, sisters and friends all desperately want him to be part of that ten percent too, and you can help them try their hardest to make sure that happens. 

This fundraising page is connected to Jamie’s Paypal account, so all funds go directly to him as soon as you donate. If you’d prefer to use direct bank deposit, contact us via the Facebook page below for his bank details. 

Assist Jamie’s brain tumour battle by donating to his fund, or simply spread the word by sharing his Facebook page. Every little action counts, and the clock is ticking. Jamie and his family have been through so much, let’s make sure they know that they’re not alone.

Thank you for being part of Jamie’s journey!

You can also keep up to date with Jamie’s progress at his new Facebook page set up to assist his fundraising efforts:
http://www.facebook.com/HelpJamieGriffiths

Jamie and his family

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