Medical Deductible 2024

Medical Deductible 2024

From Jessica Rios

I am asking for help to meet my Medical Deductible and Out of Pocket Max for 2024. I was diagnosed with Stage IV Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the maxillary sinus in June of this year. I have been through major surgery t...

Support this campaign

Subscribe to follow campaign updates!

Recent Updates

Update #1

5 months ago

I just wanted to take a moment to thank everyone from the bottom of my heart for your support with donations, prayers, support, and kind words. Never in a million years did I think I would actually surpass my goal. This takes the stress and burden off what is to come in this new year with the co-pays for doctors visits as I'm sure I'll have numerous imaging and blood tests, 2nd line treatment, oral reconstruction/revisions from my fibular free flap as well as physical and speech therapy for my face and neck. Thank you again and again - I will continue to do my part and pay it forward to the next person in need. This coming Monday is my 6th and last chemo treatment and Thursday will be my 34th round of radiation and then I have my CT scan on December 11th which is a bit quicker than normal due to the aggressive nature of my tumor. After that I have a follow up with my Radiation doctor on December 20th for results of my CT scan and then will have another follow up with my Chemo doc to determine next steps. I keep mentioning next steps because all my doctors have talked about remaining "cautiously optimistic" about possible 2nd line treatments because of the aggressive nature of the tumor so. I'm not giving up hope that I have more life in me left to go. Once I get back to myself again I would love to start meeting up with friends and family for dinner and hangouts. Radiation and Chemo to the head and neck causes extreme dry mouth and loss of taste - I have lost 100% of my taste but there are hopes for it to return (I'm sorry if you're over seeing all of my shared FB food posts lol as all I can do is look at food and and keep a running list of everything I want to eat when I get some taste back). I've lost about 80lbs so far since all of this started so don't be alarmed if you see me gaining some weight in the future :) It would be the one time I wouldn't be upset about it - I'm thankful to atleast have a feeding tube because the phenomenon of being grossed out by food in your mouth that you can't even taste is something I never will be able to explain. Needless to say, I am HUNGRY!!! :) Thank you again, everyone, even those who don't know me, from the deepest part of my heart

More Info

I'm not sure how many people think about cancer in their daily lives...I know I never did until one day my dentist told me that my x-ray didn't look right. I was having a mild headache and ear/jaw ache which I was attributing to my self diagnosed TMJ. I went to Adkins Sinus Center and followed the protocol set forth by my insurance which was to basically begin a sinus infection regimen and when that didn't work, I did an in office CT scan as Dr. Adkins thought I may just need a nasal balloonoplasty. When the in office CT scan came hack, he was unable to determine what it was. He mentioned twice before that he didn't think it was cancer but when he couldn't get conclusive results from the in office scan, he sent me to STRIC for other scans. When those came back, he said he couldn't determine what was there and that he needed to refer me to an ENT at UTSAHSC where I met Dr. Chen who did the biopsy. When I woke up from the biopsy I asked my aunt "Is it cancer?", and she told me it was...needless to say, it was devastating news.

Right after my biopsy I was scheduled to meet with my ENT surgeon and my reconstruction surgeon who would remove the fibula and other tissue from my leg to replace the hard palate and other eroded bone in my face caused by the cancer. I also had a skin graft taken from my thigh to cover the open wound from the fibula removal. During the healing I could not start Chemo or Radiation and found out in about a month or so that my skin graft failed and I would need a second one and again this would delay treatment. My second skin graft was done on September 12th and I finally started Radiation on September 27th but had to wait to start Chemo until October 9th because wounds are unlikely to heal while on Chemo and I couldn't go through a third skin graft. 

I wasn't even into my 2nd week of Radiation when one of the Radiation docs told me my face looked more swollen than normal and it was more swollen because my radiation face mask barely fit that week and was so painful to clip in so he ordered a CT scan and about a week later I found out that the tumor had returned completely, even a little larger than before and cells may have crossed over into the other side of my face so the radiation treatment had to be altered to treat both sides of my face as well as my lymph nodes. 

I still have roughly 10 treatments left which will make about 35 treatments and atleast one more round of chemo which will make 6 Chemo treatments total. After this is done I will be forced to allow my body to rest and recover and then get another scan at 4-6 weeks which scares the hell out of me because that's the amount of time it took for the tumor to come back but there is no other option.

I meet with my actual Chemo doctor later this month to discuss 2nd line therapies that may be available to me as we all have to be realistic that the cancer will not be 100% gone with the treatment I've done so far due to the fact that it couldn't be completely removed due to it having invaded areas in my skull that could not be safely accessed and how aggressive it is. I am currently waiting on pathological testing of my tumor to see if there are any specific treatments available that will help once I'm done with the chemo and radiation that I'm on now.

I've never been in a mental place like I've been with this. My entire life has changed in every aspect. I will require physical therapy to help with the incurable lymphedema that fills my face and neck, dentures to replace the top 6 teeth that were removed during my maxillectomy and countless scans and blood work to monitor my cancer along with medication and chemo to help spare/extend my life.

Making rhe decision to go public about this hasnt been easy as I've only told a handful of friends and family. I hate asking for monetary help but every dollar will go into an account to help meet my out of pocket max for 2024 which will help ease the stress of cost at each appointment. If you're unable to donate, I appreciate all the kind words and thoughts and positive light and energy you can send my way. Thank you for reading 

Campaign Wall

Join the Conversation

Sign in with your Facebook account or

Help Jessica raise $5,000 by making a donation.

Jessica Rios posted a new update:
5 months ago

Update #1

I just wanted to take a moment to thank everyone from the bottom of my heart for your support with donations, prayers, support, and kind words. Never in a million years did I think I would actually surpass my goal. This takes the stress and burden off what is to come in this new year with the co-pays for doctors visits as I'm sure I'll have numerous imaging and blood tests, 2nd line treatment, oral reconstruction/revisions from my fibular free flap as well as physical and speech therapy for my face and neck. Thank you again and again - I will continue to do my part and pay it forward to the next person in need. This coming Monday is my 6th and last chemo treatment and Thursday will be my 34th round of radiation and then I have my CT scan on December 11th which is a bit quicker than normal due to the aggressive nature of my tumor. After that I have a follow up with my Radiation doctor on December 20th for results of my CT scan and then will have another follow up with my Chemo doc to determine next steps. I keep mentioning next steps because all my doctors have talked about remaining "cautiously optimistic" about possible 2nd line treatments because of the aggressive nature of the tumor so. I'm not giving up hope that I have more life in me left to go. Once I get back to myself again I would love to start meeting up with friends and family for dinner and hangouts. Radiation and Chemo to the head and neck causes extreme dry mouth and loss of taste - I have lost 100% of my taste but there are hopes for it to return (I'm sorry if you're over seeing all of my shared FB food posts lol as all I can do is look at food and and keep a running list of everything I want to eat when I get some taste back). I've lost about 80lbs so far since all of this started so don't be alarmed if you see me gaining some weight in the future :) It would be the one time I wouldn't be upset about it - I'm thankful to atleast have a feeding tube because the phenomenon of being grossed out by food in your mouth that you can't even taste is something I never will be able to explain. Needless to say, I am HUNGRY!!! :) Thank you again, everyone, even those who don't know me, from the deepest part of my heart

Join the Conversation

Sign in with your Facebook account or

All Updates