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Family hopes to raise £120,000 for 'miracle' treatment after Morecambe dad diagnosed with rare eye cancer

Tony Brown

A family has asked for help to fund a miracle treatment after a much-loved Morecambe man was diagnosed with a rare eye cancer and given months to live.

Tony Brown was told he had ocular melanoma following a visit to the opticians, after noticing a small red spot on his eye.

Tony, 63, and his family including wife Iwona, daughter Suzie and son David were given the shattering news that without treatment, he has only months to live.

Now Suzie has set up a fundraising page hoping to raise £120,000 for pioneering chemosaturation treatment, which is only available privately.

Around 850 cases of eye cancer (ocular cancer) are diagnosed in the UK each year, affecting just five or six people in every million.

Suzie wrote on the fundraising page: "My Dad went to the opticians after he noticed a small red spot on his eye, and things escalated very quickly.

"Within days he was told he had an extremely rare and aggressive cancer. He was diagnosed with ocular melanoma on 4th March, his birthday.

"The day after being told this, he had to have his right eye removed and the tumour was taken out.

"He was then due to have checks every six months on his liver as it is a risk that cancer cells can spread there from the eye region.

"The average for this spread to happen is usually at least a couple of years after diagnosis. 

"Unfortunately in my Dad's very first MRI scan small tumours were identified in his liver. This was devastating.

"We were given the absolutely earth shattering news that without treatment he has months to live. Our family were broken by this news.

"The treatment that is available is called chemosaturation and has an excellent success rate, transforming patients' lives.

"Some people have lived past five years on it; some have had their cancer eradicated!

"These results speak for themselves. It truly is a miracle treatment for this rare cancer.

"Unfortunately the NHS do not fund it, and it is only available privately.

"As this cancer is so rare there hasn't been as much research or funding so there are very limited options for patients who have it.

"As a normal working family on average salaries, we now have to raise a lot of money in a very short time for this treatment to give him some more precious time with us.

"We are a close knit family and me and my brother simply cannot imagine life without our precious Dad in it.

"Dad is our rugby pal, we are lifelong league fans and have travelled all over watching games; he is my spider catcher, and probably the only person who can tell me to shut up and it actually works!

"This nightmare began a week after he made the plans to resign and retire in July, after working none stop for the local authority for 40 years.

"He has plans, including spending precious time with his six year old granddaughter. He cares for my brother who lives with him. He has a life to lead together with his wife and us, and he deserves to receive the very best treatment available.

As a family we will be doing all we can to raise money for the average 3/4 treatments that are usually needed, at £40,000 per go.

"We think we are able to find the funds for an initial treatment so wish to raise money to pay for the rest of the course.

"We would be so grateful for any donations you can make to help, but also if you aren’t in a position to, we ask you please to share, share, share this fundraiser!

"Tell everyone and please, help my Dad."

Chemosaturation therapy has been shown to help slow or reverse the progression of tumours from certain cancers in the liver.

It is available at a specialist centre in Southampton, which offers treatment for liver metastases arising from ocular melanoma.

At time of writing, more than £9,800 had been raised in just a week.

"It's a testimony to my dad and how loved he is," Suzie told Beyond Radio.

"Thank you so much to everybody's kind support. It really does mean so much. We're so so grateful."

You can find the fundraising page HERE.

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