3-time cancer survivor seeks help paying for medical treatment - WNEM TV 5

3-time cancer survivor seeks help paying for medical treatment

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)

A local cancer survivor is in need of help.

After surviving cancer three times, the years of radiation and chemotherapy took their toll.

She needs dental treatment, but her insurance is not helping much so she reached out to the TV5 Rescue Squad.

"You know I don't like to smile in front of a lot of people. You know, it's ugly," said Heather Wolverton, cancer survivor.

Wolverton has dealt with cancer since she was 2-years-old. Now at 29, the medical treatments have left her jaw in rough shape. She only has five teeth left.

Eating is often a painful experience as she can only open her mouth a few inches. She has learned to deal with that, but not having the smile she wants has taken a toll on her.

"You know, it's not so much the eating part because I can work around that and eat what I want. But you know, to not have a nice smile at my age kind of sucks," Wolverton said.

She said she has gone to dentists around Mid-Michigan for help, but because of her complex condition the only folks who can assist her are at the School of Dentistry at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

"I tried to do the procedure and then ask them to bill me and you know, I could come up with it at that point. But they said they had to have so much down beforehand and I think they said it was at least 20 percent down," Wolverton said.

That amounts to $3,000.

She said she gets $1,400 a month in social security disability and Medicaid will cover the cost of the surgery once her deductible is met. Wolverton said she can't pay that deductible right now.

She said there will be costs after surgery for implants and physical therapy as well. She believes the high price for surgery is putting a nice smile out of reach. That's why she is hoping the TV5 Rescue Squad can help make her goal more attainable.

"I just want to thank my friends and family for donating time and money, even your thoughts to me. I appreciate it very much," Wolverton said.

If you are interested in helping Wolverton, you can send a check to U of M School of Dentistry at the address below:

School of Dentistry
P.O. Box 223129
Pittsburgh, PA 15251-2129

The check should be in care of Heather Wolverton. Make sure the account number 664986 is on the check.

You can also submit an online donation here. Select the pay bill online option and make sure the donation is in care of Heather Wolverton, account number 664986.

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