Marine Park mom battling cancer undergoes treatment during pandemic

As the city starts to slowly reopen, some might be nervous at the thought of going to a health care facility.

News 12 Staff

Jun 23, 2020, 11:53 AM

Updated 1,427 days ago

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As the city starts to slowly reopen, some might be nervous at the thought of going to a health care facility.
A Marine Park resident battling cancer says she wants to set an example for other patients that might be apprehensive.
Whether it was modeling, bike riding, or painting, Jen Niedzwiecki had an active lifestyle until she was diagnosed with neuroendocrine tumors in October 2018.
“This cancer and the heart problem I got from the cancer, it stopped me dead in my tracks literally,”says Niedzwiecki.
The Marine Park mother of two lost her hair, a lot of weight and underwent open heart surgery to repair damage caused by the rare form of cancer just to start treatment. She had health care appointments scheduled in the midst of the pandemic, and says like many New Yorkers, the thought of being in a medical facility was terrifying.
"Obviously I know I can't get coronavirus with my medical history. I asked my doctor, he said I’m mildly immunosuppressed,”says Niedzwiecki.
However, she knew it was a matter of life and death.

"Not only would I die of cancer, but I would also become disabled and have a lot of pain,”says Niedzwiecki.
Niedzwiecki says she was relieved by the protocol put in place at Mount Sinai Hospital, including workers wearing PPE and getting tested for COVID-19 five days before her appointments.
"Keeping her in a secure room and providing her a dedicated bathroom so that nobody else shares that with her,” says Dr. Munir Ghesani, of Mount Sinai Hospital.
Niedzwiecki is encouraging the public to overcome any fears if they need medical attention.
“I’m living proof, I got through it without getting coronavirus,”says Niedzwiecki.
She will continue treatment, feeling cautious but comfortable as infection numbers go down across the city.


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