ANN ARBOR, Mich. — A pregnant mother with an aggressive form of brain cancer has refused recommendations that she abort her unborn child and has instead decided to forgo treatment in order to save her baby.
Carrie DeKlyen, a mother of five, was diagnosed with Glioblastoma Multiforme in April and and was accepted for a clinic trial at the University of Michigan. However, in meeting with doctors at the facility, she was informed that she was pregnant and would need to obtain an abortion in order to proceed.
“The doctor said, ‘If you don’t terminate this baby, Carrie, you will die,’” her husband Nick recalled to People Magazine. “But it was Carrie’s decision, and I said ‘What do you want to do?’ She said, ‘We’re keeping it.’”
DeKlyen has had two brain surgeries since to remove the tumor, but it returned both times. A month ago, DeKlyen suffered a stroke from which she has not awakened. Now at 23 weeks gestation, DeKlyen lies in a vegetative state in the hospital and her family is hoping she can hang on for another five weeks so doctors can take the baby.
Nick, who has known his wife from childhood as they attended the same church, says that as difficult as it is to lose his wife, he supports her decision. He has left his job to be by her side.
They have already named their unborn daughter Life.
“Her time is drawing near, but I know I’ll see her again—not in this life, but after my time is up I’ll be with her again in Heaven,” he told People Magazine. “She made the decision to give Life a chance at life, and I couldn’t be more proud.”
DeKlyen’s sister-in-law Sonya Nelson has set up a GoFundMe page to help with the family’s medical expenses.
“Carrie had a MRI yesterday; the results are not good. The tumor is growing rapidly. It is spreading to a part of the brain that could affect the baby,” she wrote on Saturday. “Please continue to pray for our family! Thank you all for your continued support!”
As of press time, the page had raised over $67,000 of the $75,000 goal.