First year Master of Nursing Studies UQ student, Gina Savage, shares her story about battling melanoma.
Like most young people, Gina Savage didn’t expect to be at risk of a life-threatening cancer. At just 20 years of age, life was good - with the exception of a very small but annoying lump on her scalp that she noticed when brushing her hair. Little did Gina realise that life as she knew it was about to change forever; she was soon to be diagnosed with melanoma.
After two years of aggressive treatment, Gina and her family were confident that her cancer was gone for good. However, this was just the beginning of an extremely difficult journey with metastatic melanoma. The once external melanoma had managed to find its way to the lymph nodes in Gina’s head and neck.
In the hope of stopping the cancer in its tracks, Gina underwent four surgeries, four weeks of radiotherapy and endured three difficult immunotherapy drugs.
Tragically, 12 months ago, a routine scan revealed the cancer had made its way to her lungs. The most effective treatment available for metastatic melanoma, was not working for Gina.
You are playing your part too by supporting vital melanoma research, directly benefiting patients at Mater, across Australia and around the world. You are giving hope to young people like Gina.
Mater Research is currently running nine immunotherapy clinical trials for a range of cancers. Our hope is that we can create better, more effective options for people based on how their body responds to particular treatments.