Sutton man with terminal cancer fundraising for treatment in Germany
A Sutton man with terminal cancer is trying to raise £80,000 for treatment not currently available in the UK.
Nathan Brown is asking the public the help him with the costs of a potentially life-saving procedure in Germany.
The 28-year-old was first diagnosed with esophageal cancer two years ago after visiting his GP when he was struggling to swallow food.
Tests revealed the former software engineer had stage three esophageal cancer, which normally affects people in their 80s, and occurs in the long hollow tube that runs from your throat to your stomach.
"I hadn't heard of this type of cancer before I was diagnosed with it,” he said.
"You know cancer is a thing and can start anywhere.
"But until you are thrown into the mix, you're ignorant to it, which is why I want to share my story.
"If I had the knowledge that I know now it would have helped me an incredible amount."
Despite countless rounds of radiotherapy and chemotherapy, alongside a procedure to remove the cancerous tumour, the disease came back.
But this time, the cancer had spread to the lymph nodes in Nathan's right lung and was diagnosed as terminal.
He is now appealing to the public to help him raise thousands of pounds for treatment in Germany that could cure his cancer.
Dendric Cell Therapy, which is not currently available on the NHS is a more common procedure in Germany.
"It's a strange feeling having your life threatened by something you can't see," he said.
"Your emotions run wild and you don't know what to do for the best, you don't get made aware of these treatments by the NHS because they aren't available on the NHS."
Nathan has received more than £7,000 worth of donations through the message he shared on Go Fund Me, a few days ago.
He said he's been 'overwhelmed' by the response he has had from people.
"Some people messaged me back on the page, they have told me they have been to Germany for this exact treatment and they have had amazing, positive results and hope for the same for me,” he said.
"I just feel thankful and overwhelmed.
"I am always trying to be optimistic about the future.
"This is going to be amazing, I am going to be able to go to Germany, much sooner than I anticipated."
Nathan hopes the sum will cover the cost of the initial treatment, travel expenses and afford him sufficient recovery time while he's unable to work.
More than 300 people have donated £7,069 to Nathan's 'save my life' page so far.
The personal post on the page, details his journey with esophageal cancer - from diagnosis, to mainstream treatments and where he is now.
Nathan explains why it was difficult to share such a private experience, which until now had only been heard by his close family and friends.
"For the last three years I haven't been hiding away but I have not been sharing everything that's been going on,” he commented.
"I got very overwhelmed by people and people wanting to message me and support me when I was first diagnosed.
"I was spending more time thanking them for their kind words than I was trying to survive.
"I just went under the radar so I could focus on surviving.
"For me, posting myself has been very emotionally overwhelming.
"I feel I have given everyone an insight into what my life has been like for the last two years and everyone has been crazy supportive and it's nice."
While undergoing further radiotherapy to treat his cancer, Nathan has also radically changed his eating habits and exercise routine to increase his chance of survival.
He has even developed his own medical plan to help him fight the disease - which he refers to as his 'custom protocol'.
It consists of healthy eating, exercise, taking off label drugs that combat other illnesses such as diabetes and various supplements.
"Lots of people think once you get diagnosed and it's terminal that's it but there are ways you can live with this disease and keep it at bay.
"There is a lot more that you can be doing, just changing your diet and lifestyle, my daily basis of what I eat and how I exercise has changed massively."
Nathan is documenting his fight against esophageal cancer, with the hope he can turn it into a book that will help other people.
"I'm just pulling all of the resources that I have found over the last two years into one place and help at least one person.
"If we can help raise awareness about most people's diets and how people exercise these days, then it is something."
To donate to Nathan's fund, visit his donation page here.