Tamarra White

Tamarra White

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Raised: $608

Goal: $300

Welcome to Tamarra's PurpleStride Personal Fundraising Page!

As you know, I'm a Pancreatic cancer survivor! My story is below.

I'm going to help make progress in research & testing with your support.

I'm participating in PanCAN's PurpleStride, a year-round national movement that funds lifechanging programs and services for pancreatic cancer patients and their families.

Every dollar you give means more patients can benefit from PanCAN's free, one-on-one support, personalized information, service and resources that can make a real difference in their lives.

Please make a gift of any size to get me one step closer to my fundraising goal and improving more patients' lives.

My Pancreatic Cancer Story
Most of you who follow me know, but for those who don't, I'd like to share my experience in hopes others will be made aware of the signs & symptoms.
I was diagnosed in July 2019 with a Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumor (PNET). These tumors are the rarest form of pancreatic cancer, in that only 7% of pancreatic cancer is one of these tumors. It was found when I had gastric sleeve surgery in January 2019. At the time the surgeon thought it was nothing to be concerned about, and it had been there a long time. He was correct in the fact that it had been there a long time, this type of tumor tends to be slower growing.
In March of 2019 I had a CT scan, which was found inconclusive. In May 2019 I had an MRI, which had the same result. In July 2019 I underwent an endoscopy with a biopsy of the tumor.
Following that procedure I was sent to my AMAZING oncologist Dr Borazanci. He was so patient and explained everything in a way we could understand and answered every single one of our questions. He then sent me for a PET scan. At that time he suspected the cancer had spread to two lymph nodes based on the results.
I was scheduled for surgery on August 28, 2019, to remove the tumor, about 1/2 of my pancreas, spleen (because the blood supply to your spleen comes directly from your pancreas), and my gall bladder.
This surgery was traumatic for me, to say the least. This would be my second abdominal surgery in 8 months, & third in 3 years. I was just going through the motions, trying to get through each day as it came.
After surgery I spent 5 days in the hospital. I was in shock when my surgeon told me the following morning that I'd be there that long. I know I was told this before surgery, but I wasn't able to comprehend it at the time with all of the information I was being given. It was scary and painful and something I wouldn't want anyone else to have to go through.
Each step was overwhelming; someone at 49 should NOT have to have an advanced directive or medical power of attorney. I was too young to have to think about how I wanted my life to end and what my last wishes would be.
About 15 years prior I began complaining of stomachaches/pain immediately following eating, I began having symptoms of lactose intolerance and severe acid reflux, & within the year or so prior began to have pain on my left side which I "self-diagnosed" as kidney stones. This pain never got bad enough to go to the ER, but was what I thought would feel like a stone passing from my kidney to my bladder. Every one of these symptoms are symptoms of pancreatic cancer. This is why it is ESSENTIAL to seek medical advice when your body is telling you something. I ignored and even accepted my symptoms as normal for me, when they were in fact, abnormal.
On Sept 16, 2019 I got the news that I was hoping for, but not expecting. I was CANCER-FREE, not only that, because the surgery was such a success, I would not have to undergo any chemotherapy or radiation treatments! To say we were shocked and overjoyed is an understatement! People do not live with a Pancreatic Cancer diagnosis! How could this be? If it wasn't for the gastric sleeve surgery this cancer wouldn't have been found until it was too late.
Don't ignore the warning signs your body is giving to you. See your doctor, get your yearly check ups, & if you have a history of cancer, get genetic testing done. I did and found out that I'm positive for the BRCA1 gene mutation, which means I'm more susceptible to pancreatic, ovarian, breast, & colon cancers. I have different family members who have had at least one of each of these cancers diagnosed.
I have to continue fighting, I have yearly PET Scans & MRIs& when something in my body just feels "off" I go to the doctor.
I encourage you to do the same.

Thank you for your support.

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Tamarra's Achievements

  • Connected
    to Facebook to
    Fundraise

  • Made a
    Personal
    Donation

  • Updated
    My Fundraising
    Page

  • Reached
    Fundraising
    Goal

  • I'm a
    PurpleStride
    Alum

  • I've Received
    5+ Donations
    Toward my Goal

  • $100

    Raised $100
    for 1:1 support for
    4 patients

  • $270

    Raised $270 for
    27 educational
    packets

  • $480

    Raised $480 to
    support 1 research
    grantee for 3 weeks

  • $1,000GRANDCLUB

    Raised $1K
    to be in the
    Grand Club

About PanCAN's PurpleStride

Local action. Nationwide impact. This is PanCAN PurpleStride, the ultimate event to end pancreatic cancer.

On One Big Day, through 60 PurpleStride events taking place across the country, pancreatic cancer survivors, families, caregivers, researchers and supporters will join together and walk to honor everyone affected by the disease.

PurpleStride is the number one way PanCAN raises money to fight pancreatic cancer on all fronts — through research, clinical initiatives, patient services, advocacy and nationwide volunteer support. Learn more.