My Story

I had worked as a Pharmacy Technician for 35 years. One day at work I squatted down to pick up something and it was like the muscles in my legs wouldn’t work to stand up I had to grab something to pull myself up. A couple of weeks later we moved. I was picking up a box and had a sharp pain near my bellybutton. When I felt that area I felt a knot there. So a few weeks later I went to my new PCP cause we had moved about 50 miles out. He touched it, ordered CT and MRI scans. Two days later I got a call. The Dr. wanted me to come to his office as soon as I could, no appointment. I knew that wasn’t a good sign. So I called my husband to go with me.

The Dr. said you have at least 3 internal tumors. Scheduled surgery for the knot at my bellybutton results came back stage 4 melanoma. Then Oncologist because my husband asked how long. The answer: 6 months. First I had Cyberknife (SRS) for tumors in the brain. Then he referred us to Emory in Atlanta. Several visits there on the last day of the Yervoy (Ipilubimab) trial I finally qualified. I had 3 doses 1 every 3 weeks. Each scan showed reduction in size. Down the road had to have abdominal surgery, radiation on the lung and a few years later one on my side near the breast had to be surgically removed. This journey began in 9/2010. I am now considered NED. I was very fortunate I did not have severe side effects.

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