Family and friends of a well known Ellesmere Port man are praying for his life following a complex 11-hour cancer operation.
Five teams of surgeons assembled at The Christie in Manchester, one of Europe’s leading cancer centres, to operate on Terry Jones, 54, who runs hairdressers Terry & Co on Stanney Lane.
Terry, married to Janice with four children and three grandchildren – including his latest grandchild Maggie who was born on the day of Terry’s operation – has lived in the Port all of his life apart from a spell living in Elton.
In May this year Terry received the dreadful news he had a large secondary tumour in his abdomen which was wrapped around his aorta and which had also spread into his duodenum and bowel.
This came as a devastating blow to Terry, as at the age of 24 he had testicular cancer and had 12 months of chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery and had been in remission.
Originally diagnosed with cancer of the unknown primary, it is now thought the disease regenerated from the old tumour left behind 30 years ago.
‘Terry’s Journey’ on his ‘gofundme ’ website explained: “The cancer cells in that cancer are now so rare there is no chemotherapy treatment available and radiotherapy cannot be given due to the size of the tumour.
“Terry’s only chance of life is for the rare tumour to be surgically removed otherwise he would have less than two years to live.
“The surgery will involve at least five teams of surgeons because of the severity and locality.
“There is a huge risk with this surgery as in addition to having the tumour removed Terry also has to have a large part of his aorta removed and replaced with an artificial one meaning he will need to take anti-rejection medication for the rest of his life.
“We are not yet sure what post operative treatment Terry will need but he will be in need of long-term care.”
Prior to the operation, Terry had to undergo further tests, including cardiology screening, at The Christie and Wythenshawe hospitals.
Due to circumstances within the NHS, he has had to pay for private consultations at Christies and will possibly have to pay for future tests with an appeal for £50,000 launched.
Friends say: “He has already been told by two other hospitals that there is nothing they can do for him.
“We are hoping to raise funds to support Terry through his fight with cancer and to pay for any treatment and tests that are needed.
“Any funds that are received and not used will be given to people under similar circumstances.
“We are trying to give him the best chance of survival and we need to be quick as time is now not on his side.
“Terry’s family do not want to lose him and they are so grateful for all of the support they have already received from the local community.”
After a visit to the Christie Hospital, Terry said: “I am a fighter not a quitter so I will be having the operation despite the risks. Thank you all for your lovely messages of support and for your fundraising efforts. It is really appreciated.”
Since then, it was revealed things had happened ‘really quickly’ and Terry was a priority case and in need of immediate treatment.
He desperately needed the tumour removing and more importantly, a large part of his aorta removing to be replaced with an artificial one.
Supporters pointed out that peoples’ help and donations meant it had been possible to bring forward his operation by paying for some of the tests.
They said: “We have to take things one step at a time. Terry will need long-term aftercare and lots of post-operative tests, scans, support and further as yet unknown treatment.
“So it is really important to raise the profile even more and raise as much money as possible as we don’t know yet how much this extra treatment may cost.”
After 11 hours in theatre and 10 blood transfusions Terry was said to be fighting for his life in the critical care unit, heavily sedated and being cared for by ‘wonderful’ nurses.
Friends said: “The operation went well, although there were some complications. Please all pray for Terry and continue with the wonderful support you are showing him and his family. They are so grateful.”
They added: “Terry’s operation is only the start of any treatment to beat this rare and aggressive cancer. What happens after the operation is still unclear but more treatment will be needed.”
If necessary, they suggest the next stage if they had to would be for Terry to seek help internationally.
Terry is now said to be still ‘very poorly’ but is out of critical care and has been able to phone Janice.
On Saturday, The Professional And Working Women Foundation will be donating half the funds raised at its first annual sponsored spooky walk to the appeal.
If you would like to donate to Terry's fund you can do at: GoFundMe.com