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1/21/2017 Latest post:
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.
This is Sandeep's health journey so far, as narrated by his elder brother Pradeep Srivastava:
Sandeep is currently battling with cancer- it is Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma which first originated as a salivary gland tumor in the trachea back in 2004. Part of his trachea was resected ( removed ) by surgery in Dec 2004. He was tumor free for a couple of years and again in 2007, the tumor metastasized to his lungs. It is a slow growing, indolent cancer but seems to have reached a critical mass now. The metastases are now in his liver and to some extent in kidney and in his L2 vertebra. He received "Cyberknife" radiation for the L2 vertebra in June '16 at Bangalore. There is no direct drug that can shrink this tumor as this is a very rare disease and apparently not much has been spent by way of research funding, worldwide, for this disease. Sandeep has lost more than 15 kgs weight over a span of 18+ months. His voice is very hoarse at this time so he may not be able to speak with you directly. Perhaps you can decipher what he says by reading his lips if you are on a video call.
He decided to visit USA to explore potential targeted therapies for his condition in the US. His wife and daughter are currently in Kolkata. He is on a visitor visa. Though, he has US based visitor insurance with a coverage cap of US $ 500,000/-, this insurance does not cover pre-existing conditions. As you might perhaps know, medical aid from Government is available to those without insurance, only if they hold valid social security card and are either citizens or permanent residents. As well, cancer patients' aid organizations in the US extend aid, typically to US citizens and legal permanent residents only. Therefore Sandeep has been treated as an "International patient" by the cancer centers of excellence in US where he is seeking care/consultation.
Typical consultation estimates being received from various hospitals range from US $ 30,000 to US $ 44,000. As a specific example, the estimate for consultation received from MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas is US $ 29,600. We plan on seeking similar consultations at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, Johns Hopkins ( Baltimore ) and Stanford Cancer Center. All of these are designated as "Comprehensive Cancer Centers" in the US and are in the forefront of fighting Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma. Owing to the rare nature of Sandeep's disease, we must explore targeted therapies underway in all of these centers. We have learnt that several clinical trials for this disease in various phases are in progress at these centers where Sandeep could be a candidate. We are expecting a total consultation fee to be upwards of about US $ 100,000.
About a week back, Sandeep has a bad bout of nosebleed and was admitted to the hospital in New jersey.
He is overall stable, but is in the ICU with intubation. We are awaiting for the doctors from The Cancer Institute of NJ to visit and discuss next steps.
How we propose to use this site is two-fold:
1. Through this site, we would like to give regular updates on Sandeep's health - this would be easy for all well-wishers to access to get periodic updates, and hopefully, this will reduce the pressure on the immediate family in terms of having to give updates to several people on a regular basis.
2. As you can imagine, (after you read the complexity of Sandeep's medical predicament as described below), his family needs your support, both through prayers and some monetary contribution.
We can thank you all for your support and generosity!
Testament from Aruna Bagchi (friend of Sandeep) - " I have used this site when my brother was hospitalized. It helped us keep everyone informed on a regular basis. We had family members donate money from across the globe, it was easy and safe."