By: Malcom Chakery
3/13/17 9:45 pm
Gage Overton is only 18-years-old, and he’s been told by doctors that he only has one year to live without treatment and with treatment, it truly depends on if it works or not. When he was just 16-years-old, he was diagnosed with a common benign fatty lump, which is also known as a lipoma. They noticed the growth on his back in January of 2015. The family decided to meet with a general surgeon, but unfortunately, the office closed because of heavy snow. When they met with the doctor, they decided to schedule surgery to be done in the spring.
Because of Gage’s parent’s work schedule, they scheduled the appointment six weeks later. One day, Gage came out of his room and told his parents that he thought that the lipoma was growing. His parents were really concerned. The doctor said it had great movement, which was a very good sign, and there are fast-growing lipomas. His chance for it to be cancer was 1%.
It was time for surgery. While the surgeons were performing surgery, they noticed that it was cancer because it was so deep in his tissue. Unfortunately, they could only remove part of the cancer. After the doctor misdiagnosed Gage, they informed him and his parents that he had sarcoma.
After the family found out about this, Gage underwent a PET scan, which revealed that it was a localized tumor. This wasn’t known at the time of surgery. The doctors acted fast to try to prevent the cancer from spreading. Since the cancer had been cut into, the cancer was more likely to spread.
After the doctors found out about how severe his condition was, they immediately ordered for Gage to do more cancer treatments. Gage then went through six rounds of inpatient chemo, 25 rounds of radiation and resection. After all of this, Gage underwent muscle flap plastic surgery with a skin graft. Gage was then ordered to wear a wound vacuum to drain the area. For an entire year, doctors told Gage that he didn’t have cancer anymore. Unfortunately, they told him that he does have kidney damage from chemo.
All of this took place in Gage’s junior year of high school. After the doctors said that he didn’t have cancer, he was diagnosed with Fanconi’s Syndrome. His sodium levels are currently normal, but his creatinine levels aren’t.
Gage graduated from Dubiski Career High School in 2016. He was able to go to prom and enjoy his senior year. Unfortunately, Gage and his family got some bad news a few weeks ago. Gage was again diagnosed with synovial sarcoma. When doctors checked the results of the scan, it was determined that Gage has a small mass on each lung and a pleural lining mass. They tested the pleural lining mass, and it was a synovial sarcoma. Unfortunately, the pleural lining mass is inoperable. Without treatment, he has less than a year to live. With treatment, he may be able to prolong his lifespan.
Gage’s family took him to another doctor, who is the number one in the country for treating synovial sarcoma. The doctor told Gage and his family that some of her patients have been using Votrient, which is a chemo medication. The medication slows or stops the synovial sarcoma, but it turns hair white. The doctor thinks that Gage will live longer than a year, but she isn’t sure. The family is currently waiting to see if Gage is eligible for a clinical trial. Gage must meet certain criteria to be eligible.
Gage and his family desperately need your help. Gage has set up a Go Fund Me page to help raise money to do activities in case he was to pass away. He has a goal of getting $50,000 and has quickly raised $14,520. Gage would like to travel around the world and see places he’s never seen before. He also wants to build up his car, start a YouTube channel and travel. Gage wants to have some fun in a dark, rough time in his life.
“We feel so blessed that so many people have reached out and supported Gage through all of this. We are beyond grateful and want to thank everyone who has helped him or prayed for him. I believe in the power of prayer and positive thinking, and we just can’t thank people enough for keeping Gage in their thoughts and prayers. He’s a very special but stubborn kiddo, and we are never giving up hope for treatment and ultimately a cure whether be immunotherapy, clinical trial, etc.” – Chrissy Gomez (Gage’s Mom)
Please consider donating. He and his family would greatly appreciate it. Here is the link to the Go Fund Me Page https://www.gofundme.com/thejourneybeyond