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This fundraiser ended on 02/25/12

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In Sep of 2010 after a year of unexplained illnesses, Howie was diagnosed with Stage 4 Melanoma in his lymph nodes, liver, & lungs.

The Howie Schnur Cancer Fund has been created to help raise money for the sudden unexpected cost of medical treatment due to Stage 4 Melanoma in his lymph nodes, liver, and lungs.
Around the summer of 2010 Howie noticed a lump on his left inner thigh. He already has a neurological disorder called Neurofibromitosis, or NF1 and one of the side effects were non-cancerous fibroids that would come and go, some have been there for years, but none were a threat, and none ever changed in size. The one on his leg was a different story. In a matter of a few weeks, it went from a dime sized lump to the size of a golf ball. After a round of antibiotics with no change, he was scheduled to have it removed.
The surgery went off without a hitch. In fact, the doctor said he didn't think it was serious because A) he didn't have to dig as deep as he thought to get it, and B) it came out in 1 solid piece. As a precautionary measure, it was sent out for biopsy. Upon return, it came back positive for cancerous cells.
Now Howie is insured, and in the beginning, there were no problems at all. Copays and minimums were being met, and albeit slow, the minimum payments were being met. CAT scans, PET scans, and MRIs were given, the PET scan showed that surgery was not an option, and the other scans showed the worse.. It has metastasized from the lymph nodes, to the liver to the lungs. He started out at MD Anderson and it was bleak. On the strongest Chemotherapy on the market, he went from a normal 140lbs down to a sickly 105lbs in less than 6 weeks. The doctors gave him less than 6 months to live.
After 2 treatments, the doctors determined the treatments were not working and his only option was clinical trials.
Not wanting to give up, we started making phone calls, and in came Cancer Treatment of America. Other treatment was available, and they started immediately. Once a month he flies from Houston, Tx to Chicago IL for his rounds of chemo. (luckily, the flights are covered by insurance!!) Then, the unthinkable happened. The tumors started to shrink. They did not shrink a lot, from 1/2 to 1mm at a time, but none the less, it was progress.
This went on from Jan 2011 until December of 2011. Now, come a new year, and new tests, It showed the worse. The tumors grew. Everything that shrunk came back, and now hey are bigger than they were when he was first diagnosed. Without a treatment that works, he is looking at no more than a year.
There are no more IV treatments to give, and their only hope, which the doctor said is quite slim is to take Chemo in the form of a pill. Even with insurance, the chemo is $1500 a month and other prescriptions plus expenses brings the total upwards of $2000.
In the next month, a PET another PET scan will be given and they may be able to operate. His current oncologist does not feel that they will be able to do it with out a high risk. As he puts it they will have to "cut him open from top to bottom just to see if it plausible."
Not having the money to pay for it, he has applied for assistance to help pay for the drugs, but as of now they say on paper he makes to much money. If he was able to work a full 40 hours a week and didn't have rent, a car, utilities there is a chance.
With a new year, brings a new yearly deductible that has to be met, not including the balance left over from last year. It's the end of the rope and he needs all the help he can get. Through the kindness and understanding of his ex wife, child support payments have been lowered, anything to give him that extra few dollars to keep him going.
He has a daughter, Hannah age 6, and a son David age 9 who are very scared as to what could happen to their daddy. Howie lost his mother when he was 4 years old due to breast cancer, and knows what it fees like to have lost and nobody wants that to happen to him or his kids.
Anything that can be donated is appreciated, and every single penny will be used to help Howie pay for his medical bills and expenses. If there is anything at all left over, it will be paid forward, as there are a lot of people on here who need the help and are deserving just as much if not more.
Thank you in advance, and God Bless
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