What cancer were you diagnosed with?

Renal Medullary Carcinoma Stage 4 Kidney Cancer


What age were you diagnosed?

30


What has helped you to thrive?

Having such a rare cancer meant that there are very few people out there who can relate to me. However, it also means that those who I’ve met with the same diagnosis I’ve almost felt an instant connection. Thanks to a lady named Cora in the US who has set up an RMC awareness support page I’ve been able to get in contact with people who are sharing my same experiences and I’m also able to get advise of possible treatment.

I’ve found two doctors worldwide Dr N Tannir and Dr P Msaouel of the MD Anderson Centre who research RMC and advise patient care (including mine) all over the world. While this is a devastating diagnosis I feel well supported within my RMC family. 

Separate to this I have got back into photography as a way to keep busy whilst also trying to stay well through chemotherapy. With the love of my wife and the incredible support from family, friends but most amazingly strangers who have heard my story I never feel alone. 


Chad's Story

My symptoms started on 28th June 2019 I remember this day very vividly. Blood in my urine, in my mind I knew it was bad news. I called the GP and was seen that day however that GP and the countless other GPs I saw through to August told me otherwise, urine infection, kidney stone or whatever; because at 30 they said I was too young for cancer.

On the 29th August after two A&E visits I sat alone as my wife just took our one year old daughter to her mums. A doctor came and dropped the bomb “you have kidney cancer” he gave me a leaflet and left me with my thoughts.

On 19th September I had surgery to remove the primary tumour along with my left kidney, spleen, tail of my pancreas and some nodes from my diaphragm. Unfortunately the cancer had already spread to my lungs and bone.

Following the pathology I was diagnosed with renal medullary carcinoma, a cancer that is almost exclusive to young black people who are carriers of the sickle cell trait. It has a poor prognosis but I’m out here fighting, hoping to go to Houston to meet with the only medical team I can find who are focusing research on this disease.