A CANCER-STRICKEN Musselburgh man is attempting to raise £10,000 in a last-ditch attempt to save his life.

Robert Fyvie, of Eskview Terrace, has been given just six months to live by NHS doctors after contracting bowel cancer, which has since spread to his liver.

Surgeons have already operated on Mr Fyvie as they treated his bowel infection, but fear any further surgical procedure would prove fatal for the dying father-of-six.

Determined Mr Fyvie believes he has found an Italian doctor willing to perform the intricate surgery which could save his life.

But he needs to raise the cash soon, or it will be too late for the operation to be a success.

Mr Fyvie was first diagnosed in 2006 and underwent a harrowing operation to remove the accelerating cancer in his bowel.

The surgery was successful in eliminating the bowel cancer but, during the procedure, the cancer "spilled" into Mr Fyvie's liver.

NHS surgeons have explained to the former transport business owner that a further operation would inevitably lead to fatal complications as the new tumour is too close to his biliary system.

But, a new procedure by Italian oncologist Dr Tullio Simoncini, which involves inserting a catheter straight into the liver, could give Mr Fyvie a lifeline he didn't think was possible.

The 53-year-old is now appealing to the "good people of East Lothian" to help him raise the much-needed funds to travel to Rome at the end of the month for the lifesaving operation.

"This really is the last chance for me," said a still-spirited Mr Fyvie.

"Doctors have only given me between six and, at the most, eight months to live.

"I first developed bowel cancer back in 2006, and following the operation the cancer unfortunately spilled into my liver. Surgeons told me they would have to remove 85 per cent of my liver, so it is not possible to operate. The new tumour is also close to my bile duct, which complicates matters even further. And I've been told a liver transplant is not an option." Following the devastating news, Mr Fyvie's wife Angela, 39, then spent hours trawling the internet in an attempt to find an alternative solution to their problem.

She first came across a holistic treatment in Thailand and the family immediately went about a fundraising campaign which pulled in a massive £9,000.

Robert and Angela then spent 12 weeks last summer in the Asian country, building up his immune system with various herbal medicines.

"It doesn't work for everybody but I can swear by the herbal treatment I was given," he said.

"I feel much stronger than I did before and my immune system is better than it has ever been. But, unfortunately, it isn't a cure. That is where Dr Simoncini comes in.

"I realise it is a lot to ask of people, but, basically, this is my last hope of survival. I can't afford the treatment and if anyone can help me I would be eternally grateful." Friends and family rallied round last year to raise £9,000 for Mr Fyvie by organising race nights and auctions.

Various local businesses got involved and prizes up for grabs included a pair of world champ Joe Calzaghe's boxing gloves and two tickets to a football match at Old Trafford.

But, the family know they have little time to organise further events and are desperate to raise the funds by March 21.

Mr Fyvie added: "I don't know what we will do if we can't raise the cash, I suppose we will cross that bridge when we come to it.

"What is heartbreaking is that my youngest boy, Marc, is only eight years old and I'm desperate to see him, and my other kids, grow up.

"At Christmas, he wrote a letter to Santa telling him he didn't want any presents this year, the only thing he wanted was 'a new tummy for my dad'. I'm basically appealing to the good nature of the people of East Lothian to help save my life. It's my last hope." Simon Mackenzie, associate medical director, NHS Lothian, said: "Mr Fyvie has not approached us about this particular treatment, but we are working with him to tailor a care plan to meet his needs." If you can help the Fyvie family in any way contact angiean drab56@yahoo.co.uk or call 0131 665 0828.