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Bid to raise £100k for Sam John's life saving treatment
A FAMILY needs to raise at least £100,000 for life saving treatment for their son.
Sam John was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour at nine years old and although it has been kept at bay, now it has started growing again.
The 16-year-old, from Fareham, needs specialist radiotherapy to stop it growing available in the United States, but needs funds to make this possible.
Although the family has applied for funding for the treatment from the NHS and is waiting to hear the outcome, they are not hopeful they will receive it.
Sam's mother Vicki, 38, said this is because her son has turned 16 and his condition no longer falls under the categories where adult treatment is covered by the NHS.
For the last four years Sam, of Albert Road, had been having regular check-ups following two years of chemotherapy to stop the benign tumour growing any further - it cannot be shrunk.
But two weeks ago, the family received the news from doctors at Southampton General Hospital, where Sam is being treated, that his tumour was growing again.
Although there is a radiation treatment Sam can have here in the UK, the family says that to treat the tumour it must pass through both sides of Sam's brain which they say could cause long-term damage to his healthy brain, leading to memory, concentration and vision problems.
The proton treatment he can have in America would only pass through one side of Sam's brain, halving the potential damage it could do.
Vicki said that the radiation treatment can also lead to more tumours so they want to half the chances of this.
The family - which also includes Sam's father Steve, 44, and his younger brother Matthew, 13 - believe they need somewhere between £100,000 and £200,000 to cover the cost of the trip to America and the treatment.
The Neville Lovett School pupil wants to be a solicitor or teacher when he is older and mum Vicki said she is determined to ensure he has those opportunities “They told us this is the best treatment - if we have to sell the house he's going,” said an emotional Vicki, who is a higher level teaching assistant at Wallisdean Infant School.
“We don't like to ask for help.
“It would just mean the world to us if we could get Sam over there.”
Already Sam has received offers of support from as far away as New Zealand, with Facebook pages set up and community fundraisers planned.
For more details about how you can help log on the Facebook pages set up, entitled Mission for Sam and Thinking Shrinking.