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#EyeGetDilated: Stephanie L.

Guest blog post by Stephanie Lyznick, OM advocate and captain of Team Frank CURE OM Squad, walking in memory of her brother-in-law, Frank Nichols:

My name is Stephanie Lyznick and I first learned of ocular melanoma in February of 2011 when my brother-in-law Frank Nichols was diagnosed with this rare disease. He spent many years going through multiple treatments and in 2014, the cancer had spread to his liver making it life threatening. Sadly, Frank lost his battle with OM on September 9, 2017.

Together with my family, we started the “Frank CURE OM Squad” in 2016 and began walking in the Los Angeles Miles for Melanoma 5k to raise awareness and funds to help find a cure for OM. Additional research is greatly needed to beat this deadly disease. As a rare disease, the OM community does not have corporate sponsors or celebrity spokespersons; we only have each other to help spread the word and fight for a cure. Over the past four years we have participated in the Miles for Melanoma walk and with the help of our team we have raised over $16,000 to help find a cure.

With around 2,000 new cases diagnosed each year it is very important to add dilation to your yearly eye exam. It’s the only way to detect melanoma of the eye before symptoms start, a sign that the cancer is more advanced. Although there are several treatments to slow the progression of OM, there is currently no cure. This is why more research is needed.

This year, the Miles for Melanoma Los Angeles 5k is being held on November 16, 2019 at Griffith Park. The “Frank CURE OM Squad” welcomes anyone to join our team or make a donation to help us in the fight to find a cure.

The MRF’s CURE OM initiative is inspired by and grateful for dedicated OM advocates like Stephanie and the Frank CURE OM Squad, whose generosity makes this life-saving work possible. Please consider joining them with a tax-deductible gift to support more research, better treatments and, one day, a cure for ocular melanoma.