Health complication delays Biaggini Bahamas trip for cancer treatment
January 5, 2010
GARDNERVILLE, Nev. – Douglas County Sheriff’s Capt. Mike Biaggini is undergoing treatment in San Francisco for bile duct blockage before he is cleared for a trip to the Bahamas cancer treatment.
Biaggini, 55, had hoped to leave Sunday for the Bahamas to undergo the alternative cancer treatment that is not available in the United States.
Instead, he and his wife Mary along with some family members and friends drove to San Francisco on Sunday where he was admitted to California Pacific Medical Center for evaluation and treatment.
Mary Biaggini said Monday her husband was being cared for by doctors who have treated him as he battled colon cancer for eight years.
“They know Mike here. They’ve treated him for eight years. They said they were going to make sure whatever he needs, he gets,” she said.
The veteran law enforcement officer was planning a trip to the ITL Cancer Clinic in Freeport, Bahamas, for an alternative therapy after doctors advised him in October further radiation and chemotherapy would not stop the cancer’s spread.
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“When the doctors told him he’d have to stay here (San Francisco) about a week, he just rolled his eyes at me,” Mary Biaggini said Monday. “But he knows what needs to be done. We’re in very capable hands; we’ve got some amazing people surrounding us here and at home.”
Mary said doctors wanted to ensure that Biaggini was strong enough to make the trip to the Bahamas.
“They want to get some nutrition in him and build up his protein,” she said.
On Dec. 23, he was underwent a battery of tests to relieve abdominal fluid and pain.
Mary Biaggini said his bilirubin levels were elevated which indicated bile duct blockage, and the stints inserted before Christmas may have collapsed or shifted.
“He’s tired and anxious to find out what they know,” Mary Biaggini said. “He knows they want him to be well enough to make whatever journey is in store for him. He’s a fighter. He’s not giving up.”
In a brief conversation Monday from his hospital room, Biaggini said he was “doing OK, except for those damn hiccups.”
“We’re here trying to get those obstacles taken care of so I have a chance,” he said. “Just give everybody my love.”
She said her husband was disappointed at the time he would be away from their 8-year-old son, Michael, who stayed in Gardnerville with his grandmother.
“The only thing he’s said about is that he promised Michael he would see him tonight (Monday),” she said.
Friends of the Biagginis have set up a Web site to follow his progress and to collect donations to assist with medical expenses.
“We are so grateful that people are here with him and the support he’s been given,” Mary Biaggini said.