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Founder Nancy Lindholm
A few days before my first wedding anniversary, at age 29, I collapsed on the subway in Boston. I was taken to the emergency room at Massachusetts General Hospital. There, I was diagnosed with extensive liver tumors that displace the majority of my liver, as well as with innumerable bony tumors. The doctors were grim and gave me a few months to live.
For years, I had experienced tremendous fatigue and abdominal pain and, eventually, intense flushing. My doctors always told me these symptoms resulted from the stress of working long hours as a tax attorney. In fact, these symptoms were caused by carcinoid cancer and its metastatic effects known as Carcinoid Syndrome. My diagnosis was confirmed several weeks later by a liver biopsy.
Carcinoid is a deadly neuroendocrine cancer. I am thankful to be alive, but I am greatly disappointed there is no cure. Chemotherapy is typically ineffective for this cancer. Like other carcinoid patients, I receive regular shots of Sandostatin® and intravenous infusions of Aredia®. I have undergone two hepatic artery embolizations to contain my liver metastases. I have also participated in two clinical trials—one using a radioisotope called Yttrium-90, and the other using an anti-angiogenesis drug called Endostatin®. None of these treatments resulted in tumor regression.
I founded the Caring for Carcinoid Foundation to support leading scientists whose research will lead to cures for carcinoid, pancreatic neuroendocrine, and related neuroendocrine cancers. I know the lonely feeling of fighting an incurable cancer that receives little governmental research funding and little pharmaceutical company interest. I also know that greater insight into neuroendocrine cancer will result in greater insight into other cancers such as gastrointestinal, and prostate.
The Caring for Carcinoid Foundation is unique in its focus on research. We pursue a clearly defined, 3-step research road map based on guidance from our Board of Scientific Advisors. The scientists we support are already making progress. However, we urgently need your help to expedite and expand the research. Neuroendocrine tumor patients struggle and die every day because no cure exists.
Please join us in this fight. 100% of all donations directly support neuroendocrine cancer research and are tax-deductible. Together, we will achieve our mission. Thank you for your dedication and generosity.
Founder and Director
Caring for Carcinoid Foundation
Learn more about Nancy:
Nancy discusses the importance of health and disability insurance in the American Bar Association (ABA) Journal's article, Get a Plan B.
Read a Self Magazine article featuring Nancy's story, Becoming your own best hope.
Nancy is a patient advocate on the National Cancer Institute’s Neuroendocrine Tumor Task Force.
Nancy selected to join NCI Gastrointestinal Cancer Steering Committee
Nancy O'Hagan received the "40 Under 40" award from Boston Business Journal. This award honors 40 outstanding professionals under the age of 40 for their business success and community contributions.