A local SA woman has recently been diagnosed with an aggressive form of brain cancer that has tipped the life of her and her family upside down within a matter of weeks.
Mental Health Social Worker, Danielle Richardson began getting headaches less than two months ago that lead her to seek medical attention and tests, however, doctors hadn’t detected anything at the time.
Sadly, things took a turn for the worst for Danielle when she fell into a seizure at home one evening.
Husband Brenton says it was a very stress full night for the family with their daughter trying to help her mum who was in a seizure.
“she said she was going to bed early and I heard a strange noise and then she was having a seizure, it was very stressful for me and my daughter, the ambulance came and they had her in the scanner here in Port Lincoln and within three hours they told me she had cancer, a glioblastoma tumour which was a huge shock” said Brenton.
Danielle and her family flew to Sydney which saw her undergo a major brain surgery conducted by neurosurgeon Dr. Andrew Davidson who removed 87% of the tumour.
The operation has left Danielle with loss of sight to one eye and many other side-effects.
Husband Brenton who has left work to look after Danielle as her primary carer says they are struggling financially and although the operation will only prolong her living, the tumour will grow back fast and it’s not ideal.
“We’re hoping for a long prognosis but with this type of tumour its grows back and it grows back fast, only 4-5% of people in South Australia live longer than 14-18 months.” said Brenton.
The surgery alone was up to $60,000 not including their travel expenses, general living and home mortgage.
A GoFundMe Page has been started up by close friends of Danielle, Bronwyn Warland, Shelly Harvey and Donna Bergineti, in hopes to raise money that will help take the financial burden off the family.
On top of Danielle’s condition, Brenton says he has had insurance and tax difficulties which have failed to cover them in their most desperate time of need and are now facing further fights to gain help.
Danielle still recovering says, she had no idea about the GoFundMe page until recently but she’s been amazed by how kind people have been, putting their heart and souls into helping her and her family.
“I was working and counselling right up until I ended up in hospital. I had tests at the beginning of the year but they put it down to iron deficiency.” said Danielle.
Although the tumour was not detected early on, Brenton said it may not have made a difference due to the aggressiveness of the cancer.
While the GofundMe page has managed to reach an impressive $17,000, most of the money has come from family and friends and is still far from their target.
Locals willing to donate and give Danielle and her family some support during their time of need can head to the Go FundMe Page Smile for Danielle.