A mother-of-two given just weeks to live is in a race to raise £500,000 for “last chance” cancer treatment in the US.
Roz Paterson, 52, said she’s desperate to see her kids, aged 13 and ten, grow up.
Wellwishers have so far donated about £20,000 to an online appeal for her.
“I am pretty desperate to stay alive,” said Ms Paterson, from Beauly in the Highlands. “I have two young children and, like any mother, I want to see them grow up … I want to see who’ll they’ll become, I want to be there to give them love and support, and to hold my grandchildren.”
She has been given just weeks to live after being diagnosed with an aggressive form of blood cancer known as Large Diffuse B-Cell Lymphoma (LDBCL).
After four bouts of chemotherapy failed it became clear she was heading towards a “desperate situation” leading her to consider alternative types of treatment, including a pioneering new remedy known as Car-T Cell Therapy.
It is not currently available on the NHS in Scotland, and any possible treatment in England would be too late for her, she said.
Ms Paterson is now preparing to travel with her husband Malcolm McDonald, 62, and her two children, daughter Thea, 13 and son David, ten, to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, for what she says is her “last chance”.
She said: “The cancer I have is Large Diffuse B-Cell Lymphoma (LDBCL), it’s a high grade one which will be very aggressive and really hard.
“Normally you would get your chemo, it would attack the cancer and it would cure it but because my cancer is fast-moving, really my life expectancy is quite short and the consultant has said it is weeks, maybe months, but not a year so time really is of the essence.
“It’s a big adventure, it’s kind of terrifying and mad but it’s the only way to do it. It’s the only option I have left.
“We have always been together. I was a stay-at-home mum which I am really glad about now because if my time is limited, I’m glad I had that time with them. If I come through and I’m cured, what a great time I am going to have. If it’s the end and it fails then we will be together at the end.”
In a desperate attempt to stay alive and watch her two children grow up she launched a crowd-funding appeal to help raise the funds needed to give her this second chance at life.
After just 24 hours the appeal had raised £17,796 and last night had topped £20,000.
Ms Paterson added: “It’s quite overwhelming actually. I was very tearful last night because I just didn’t expect the level of response.”