Kent bat­tling for his chil­dren

Franklin County News - - FRONT PAGE - JOHN BOYN­TON

Af­ter los­ing the end of his fin­ger in a mo­tor­bike ac­ci­dent, Kent Al­lan still felt he needed fur­ther med­i­cal at­ten­tion.

For al­most a year prior to the ac­ci­dent, Kent had been suf­fer­ing from headaches, so his doc­tors or­dered a scan.

Kent found he had a 6.5cm tu­mour in the back of his head and af­ter brain surgery he spent 10 weeks in hos­pi­tal and de­vel­oped menin­gi­tis. ’’Ap­par­ently I al­most died on the op­er­at­ing ta­ble twice,’’ he said.

Af­ter his surgery he was then di­ag­nosed with a rare ge­netic dis­or­der known as Von Hip­pel Lin­dau (VHL) syn­drome.

VHL is a hered­i­tary con­di­tion where tu­mours grow in mul­ti­ple or­gans, and nor­mally on­sets from a per­son’s late 20s and early 30s, Kent said.

In 2015, Kent was told a tu­mour first found in 2002 had grown and metas­ta­sized to the liver and was now in­op­er­a­ble.

In the space of six months there had only been 1mm growth, but in the past year the tu­mour has grown three to four times in size.

Kent was told he had just a year to live and the best chance he had to try and shrink the tu­mour was to travel to Mel­bourne to have Pep­tide Re­cep­tor Ra­dionu­clide Ther­apy (PRRT), a form of molec­u­lar tar­geted ther­apy.

This form of treat­ment is not avail­able in New Zealand, and the cost of the six-week treat­ment is around $50,000.

‘‘It will shrink things - it will give me time pretty much,’’ Kent said. ’’If it shrinks things enough they might be able to op­er­ate.’’

His two chil­dren, Shawna, 16, and Seth, 14, were the two rea­sons Kent said he was fundrais­ing to re­ceive treat­ment in Mel­bourne.

‘‘I get so many com­pli­ments from peo­ple about how nice my kids are, and I’m proud of that.’’

Seth was di­ag­nosed as a baby with the same ge­netic con­di­tion as his dad. Kent said he feared for his son’s fu­ture when it came to the cur­rent prac­tices around VHL treat­ment in New Zealand.

‘‘I’m not see­ing any ad­vances com­ing out to the pub­lic to help this.’’

Kent said since been given around a year to live, he’s try­ing ev­ery­thing to ex­tend his time with his chil­dren.

‘‘I’m not fin­ished with them, I wanna see them walk­ing down the aisle, I’d love to see their grand­chil­dren.

‘‘That’s what’s cre­ated the ur­gency for me to cre­ate a givealit­tle page.’’

On Mon­day from 5.30pm, Town Mouse Pukekohe will hold a fundrais­ing event for Kent and there will be a mini auc­tion and food and drinks avail­able to buy. For more in­for­ma­tion on the event con­tact So­nia on 027 308 6360.

Seth, left, Kent and Shawna Allen at their Pukekohe home. Kent wants to raise $50,000 for treat­ment in Mel­bourne.

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