Houston Boy Battles Brain Tumor; Needs Community Support - The Jewish Voice
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Sunday, September 24, 2023

Houston Boy Battles Brain Tumor; Needs Community Support

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6-year old Refael Elisha Cohen pictured here with his mother, Devorah Teicher Cohen
6-year old Refael Elisha Cohen pictured here with his mother, Devorah Teicher Cohen
Refael Elisha Cohen is a 6 yr. old boy battling a highly malignant brain tumor known as medullablastoma. Devorah Teicher Cohen, Refael Elisha’s mother explained that her son has undergone surgery, radiation and chemotherapy, exhausting all mainstream medical treatments.

Still, Rabbi and Mrs. Cohen are waging on all-out war on the dreaded malady. “We are not giving up” Rabbi Yaacov Cohen exclaims while choking up. “We believe in G-d, miracles and prayers “.

Currently, Refael Elisha is on 12 clinical trial medications. Devorah and a group of dedicated volunteers are fielding hundreds of medical leads which keep pouring in at a steady flow from across the globe. In fact, there is one medical option which several prominent cancer researchers continually taught as the most promising for brain tumors.

The latter is called antineoplaston therapy, developed by Doctor Stanislaw Burzynski. The therapy uses peptides and amino acids’ and is manufactured in a block long pharmaceutical laboratory which operates directly under FDA Supervision. The FDA recognizes that the trials show efficiency, but has pulled its approval in 2012 pending reapproval possibly within the year. Current negotiation process is over interpretation of argumentative technicalities.

Ironically, the Cohens reside 10 minutes away from the Burzinsky clinic. They can see the meds that can potentially save their son even touch the medicine but cannot administer the antineoplaston due to the FDA clinical hold. Keenly aware of the controversy surrounding Burzynski and his therapy the Cohens have launched a petition to convince the FDA to grant a “compassionate use of exemption” for Refael Elisha. To date the petition has garnered over 87 thousand votes in less than 2 weeks nearly the 100 thousand signature goal.

Firstly let us state in crystal clear turn the Cohens are rational, intelligent people. They have researched the Burzynski option on many levels and encourage people to watch the eponymous film “The Burzynski movie part 1 & 2”. In doing so one can readily comprehend why the Cohens are doing their utmost to obtain this treatment. Who within reason could blame them?

Secondly, those who are actively speaking against the petition while strong arming others to follow suit are trying to directly hurt the compassionate work of over 80 strong volunteers who are working around the clock to aid the Cohen family. Perhaps, these naysayers do not intend in harming the Cohens but in my humble opinion they are doing something far more detrimental than that.

G-d is in charge, and as practicing Jews we believe in the power of blessings from our Gedolim and we know Refael will merit a miraculous recovery. So no, you are not detracting from this little boy’s chances at survival, but I believe strongly that we volunteers are privileged to receive a prized ticket to Gan Eden after 120 yrs. As the Gemara states in tractate Avodah Zarah a person can acquire his heavenly reward in a single minute.

The issue really isn’t about what I or anyone else think. It is about supporting the family. Prayers and your signatures as the Cohens state” is a big hug”. The family appreciates your commitment and support and strongly urges everyone to sign the petition. We are doing our part, please do yours.

Please pray for: Refael Elisha Meir ben Devorah

To sign the petition please go to: http://wh.gov/lko6e

Written by the Campaign to Save Refael Elisha Cohen

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