Posted in April 2012
We have been touched by asbestos in individual ways, yet we are joined together by a common bond of community. As a testament to the strength of our global family, Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) is highlighting the courageous stories of our members with the “Share Your Story” feature on our website.
This week, we would like to honor the story of Julius, as shared by his wife, Martina, who is a part of our ADAO family.
We encourage you to submit your personal stories by clicking here and following the simple instructions on the page. In sharing, comes healing. Remember, you are not alone.
“Turned Away” – JULIUS’ STORY
Date of Birth: 06-JAN
Date of 1st Symptoms: 10-MAR-2011
Date of Diagnosis: 11-MAR-2011
Diagnosis: malignant pleural mesothelioma
Date of Death: March 23, 2012
Treatment: Julius was diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma of the left side as well as pericardium was affected with the cancer growth. We had no treatment what so ever. Only doctor in Ontario who operates this condition FIRED Julius and left us with no doctor.
How has Asbestos changed your life? (unedited): Asbestos did not change our life, the ignorance of Canadian government and lack of any treatment did. In Canada, mesothelioma is considered an occupational disease and it falls under the WSIB. We were recommended to Dr. Deperrot in Princes Margaret Hospital in Toronto. Since Julius asked more question about the disease and operation than the doctor wanted to answer and since Julius asked for a second opinion, the only doctor fired Julius and left us with no help. Julius did not want chemotherapy of radiation. We were left on our own in the country that claims to be a best country in the world since we have a free public health. Truth is – we do not have any medical help what so ever. We got thorasic surgeon who would drain the fluid from the pleura once a month. Later on Julius had “installed” a permanent drainage tube and was drained every second day by a home nurse. Just family doctor is taking “care” of Julius by prescribing enormous amount of morphine. We asked for CT scan as recommended by radiologist (after the regular ex-ray), but we were asked “what for?” suggesting that it is a waste of money for someone considered dead already. Since last year October I am being told that my husband has about 2 – 3 weeks to live. Two weeks ago I was told that he has a week to live, maybe two. He is still alive but he is dying of desperation for not being able to get a medical help he needs. The meso had spread to his right side (just a traces of fluid), to his tummy and especially to his liver. His feet are swollen very much but nobody does anything – again since he is going to die anyway. I am absolutely desperate. I want to help my husband. I am terrified every morning that I will find my husband dead in his bed. On March 12, 2012 I had to call 911 since Julius’ heart beat was 210 beat per minute. It would go up and down between 155 – 210 beats. Julius got a heart medication only to wait te see his children. I was told that he will not make it alive from the hospital. He did. March 14 we took him home. He did not want to die. He was fighting to live. Finally, March 23, 2012 his heart gave up for ever. It was the morning after my birthday. Julius was a geologist who worked for Federal Government in 1984-1989 (not abslotely sure about the date). His boss of that time was interested ONLY in promoting asbestos rather than to take the whole job seriously. Julius was not involved in promoting asbestos or asbestos in general. He was a base metal specialist. Any time he would need his boss signature, he was not available because the asbestos was the “hot stuff”. That needed attention to be heavily promoted even though the first documented death from asbestos dates back to 1908!