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Bakersfield, CA 93306

Testimony Celestino Lopez

My name is Celestino, it all started in 2009 with a small ball on my left arm, I didn’t pay much attention to it. It grew and I decided to go to the doctor. At first, they told me not to worry that it was a ball of meat. But the ball kept growing and since I don’t have health insurance, I couldn’t go to the doctors as much. My salary is $6.00 an hour, I can’t afford insurance, I barely make enough money to live.

Time went by, but 3 years ago I started to feel that it was growing faster and faster. At first it was like a baseball, and it grew larger than a football. I felt pressure on my arm, a lot of pain and cramps.

One year ago, I went to see the doctor and they told me that I needed surgery but that it was going to cost me a lot of money. I went to 3 different hospitals, none of them wanted to treat me, even in a hospital they discriminated against me. When I was in the hospital bed, the nurse was giving me medicine and then the doctor came and said “No, no, no, I already told you that we will not do the operation here” and it was a large hospital where they can do my surgery, But they didn’t accept me and they sent me to another place where the first thing they asked me was also insurance “if you don’t have insurance we can’t help you” they told me.

I went to another hospital where they kept me for 3 days, I thought they were finally going to do the surgery, but they didn’t do anything, finally they told me that they didn’t have a surgeon who would do that type of surgery. They sent me with another letter to the Hospital of UMC, I went and gave them the referral they gave me, but they did not want to help me either. I went to other different places, they all told me that they couldn’t help me, and they gave me phone numbers where to call. I had been suffering and enduring pain. I was desperate because they had told me that I had to remove the tumor since it seemed it was the beginning of cancer, a sarcoma. I work in a restaurant, and it bothered me a lot, when I got close to heat it would start to burn, hurt, and stab sensation.

Thanks to Dr. Edgeworth, she recommended me CSF Surgery, she told me “I want to help you, I know that this tumor is dangerous and growing.” The doctor said that the tumor was close to the heart and that it was going towards the back and through the lungs. She told me about Dr. Enriquez, I had heard about him, she told me that Dr. Enriquez was a very good surgeon, so when I came to visit him and spoke with him, I felt confident and happy.

I want to thank Dr. Jorge Enriquez who finally operated me and the entire team at Cirugía Sin Fronteras and CSF Foundation, who also helped me financially. My surgery was at Memorial Hospital, I was nervous when I arrived, but I saw that everyone was very nice and professional, I was reassured. Soon I will update you on my recovery.

-Celestino López-


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