Kristeen has lived with a rare genetic mutation since she was a child.
Known as STK11, this has resulted in significant health issues throughout her life including a recurrent bowel obstruction during pregnancy, multiple laparotomies, polyp removals, removal of her right ovary, and a left breast pre-cancerous change which led to bilateral mastectomies to reduce her risk of breast cancer. However, it did not end here.
In October 2019, at age 49, Kristeen received an additional diagnosis – endocervical mucinous adenocarcinoma of the gastric type, a very rare subtype of cervical cancer.
In November 2020, despite radical surgery, doctors found that Kristeen's cancer was back, this time involving her bladder. She started standard chemotherapy in early 2021, but it didn’t work.
She has since received three cycles of an oral form of chemotherapy, once again there was no response.
Kristeen recently consented to involvement in the WEHI-Stafford Fox Rare Cancer Program, where her tumour was assessed with Whole Genome Sequencing. Findings suggest that the STK11 mutation is the major driver for her cancer.
Despite the results of this genomic analysis, she has no other recommended treatment available for this exceedingly rare cancer type. Kristeen’s team have been trying to access a new treatment for her known as Everolimus, which has shown promising results in cases with this specific gene mutation.
Everolimus is not PBS funded in the rare cancer setting as it would be impossible to obtain data to support reimbursement for such a rare indication. It is for this reason that Kristeen’s doctors have applied to gain access based on her lifetime of medical issues. This submission was recently denied.
Kristeen has no choice but to self-fund the treatment that could potentially extend her life. It will cost her approximately $1,823 per month.
The funds raised on this fundraising page will go towards helping Kristeen to access the treatment she needs. If you can help Kristeen have more time with her family, please help.