Neuroendocrine cancer can take you by surprise.
Maros Felsen blamed the buffet at a holiday party for his gastrointestinal discomfort one weekend in December 2017. After ginger tea, a visit to urgent care, and the medication he was prescribed didn’t help, he asked a neighbor to take him to the emergency room.
A preliminary ultrasound showed something suspicious on his liver, putting into motion an urgent and stressful series of tests that led to a neuroendocrine cancer diagnosis.
“They found a primary tumor on my pancreas and metastasis on my liver,” said Maros Felsen. “I did a lot of Googling that day, and based on my research, I had two to six months to live.”
But that was two years ago. This fall, Felsen, a married 44-year old father of three children, organized and ran a 5K fundraiser for NETRF, on top of celebrating his youngest daughter’s fourth birthday.
The Maros Felsen 5K Run/Walk to Support the Neuroendocrine Tumor Research Foundation took place on Saturday, September 28th, a sunny, warm day, which made for an enjoyable run/walk along the Riverfront in Wilmington, DE.
An employee of Barclays Bank Delaware, Felsen recruited 40 co-workers and family members to run or walk an invigorating riverfront course to raise $1,300 for neuroendocrine tumor (NET) research—an amount that will be matched as part of the Spark Hope campaign. “I got a lot of support from my coworkers,” said Felsen. “I really wanted to give them the opportunity to have fun and exercise— it’s a healthy habit that can prolong life.”
Felsen, who has undergone both chemotherapy and hormone therapy, has seen his disease progress and regress.
He says chipping in for research is important. “Based on current knowledge, this diagnosis in stage IV is terminal, research gives us hope,” says Felsen.
Despite its advanced stage, his neuroendocrine cancer is manageable. He’s working full-time, chasing three children under eight years old around, and even getting to enjoy the occasional quiet times with his wife. He’s proof that you can lead an active, meaningful, and successful life with neuroendocrine cancer.