Patient Spotlight Doug's Story Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

"Suddenly there was new hope and a way to fight."

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Doug Olson
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Abi Ford

Abi's Story

Lung Cancer

Abi's Story

Lung Cancer

“I have a real future thanks to Penn. And with life, comes hope.”

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Allan Shuman

Allan's Story

Lung Cancer

Allan's Story

Lung Cancer

"In last year, I have served in the Israel army, and visited Jordan and Thailand. None of it possible without the cancer geniuses at Penn."

Read Allan's Story
alexa-brca-story

Alexa's Story

BRCA Mutation
alexa-brca-story

Alexa's Story

BRCA Mutation

“Whether they are facing cancer, genetic testing results, or any challenge for that matter, I want people to understand that good can come from any situation...”

Read Alexa's Story
patient story preview amy

Amy's Story

BRCA Mutation
patient story preview amy

Amy's Story

BRCA Mutation

"Even though it was irrational, I felt as if I brought cancer upon my entire family."

Read Amy's Story
Zoomed in shot of Arnold, prostate cancer patient, on a dragon boat

Arnold's Story

Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer survivor, Arnold - motorcycle, dragon boat

Arnold's Story

Prostate Cancer

"During treatment, I continually reminded myself that I am a World Champion—that I had the guts to keep going and the strength to maximize the treatment and heal."

Read Arnold's Story
Bill on bicycle at in front of ACC sign

Bill's Story

Prostate Cancer
Bill on bicycle at in front of ACC sign

Bill's Story

Prostate Cancer

"Not only did proton therapy allow me to avoid a lengthy post-surgery layoff from cycling, I was able to regularly include cycling, something so important to me and my lifestyle, in my routine while undergoing my treatment."

Read Bill's Story
Prostate-cancer-bob-lustig

Dr. Lustig's Story

Prostate Cancer
Prostate-cancer-bob-lustig

Dr. Lustig's Story

Prostate Cancer

"I came in the morning, got on the table, had my treatment, and went back to work."

Read Dr. Lustig's Story

Bonnie's Story

Pancreatic Cancer

Bonnie's Story

Pancreatic Cancer

I'm a wife, a mother and thanks to Penn, I'm a survivor.

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carlette breast cancer

Carlette's Story

Breast Cancer
carlette breast cancer

Carlette's Story

Breast Cancer

"My faith is stronger and as a result of this life changing experience I’ve been able to embark upon yet another journey."

Read Carlette's Story
patient story teaser carole

Carole's Story

Breast Cancer
patient story preview carole

Carole's Story

Breast Cancer

"Dr. Rate was amazing," she says. "He asked me about myself - he put me as a person before my cancer diagnosis. He just made me feel I was important - that I was comfortable with the whole process. And, he presented information to me in a very understanding and reassuring way."

Read Carole's Story
melanoma-colleen

Colleen's Story

Melanoma
melanoma-colleen

Colleen's Story

Melanoma

"I didn't even know what melanoma was at that time - it may as well have been malaria for all it meant to me."

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patient story teaser danielle

Danielle's Story

Not yet tested with a known familial BRCA1 mutation
patient story preview danielle

Danielle's Story

Not yet tested with a known familial BRCA1 mutation

"We always sort of knew the cancer in our family was hereditary."

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patient story teaser dennis

Dennis' Story

Colon Cancer
patient story preview dennis

Dennis' Story

Colon Cancer

"If riding and fundraising money for cancer research can help one person not go through what I went through, I'm happy with that."

Read Dennis' Story
Cyclotron

Dennis' Story

Urethral Cancer
Cyclotron

Dennis' Story

Urethral Cancer

"We met so many wonderful caregivers at Penn and made many friends there. I often look back and thank God for putting me with the best clinicians, a great hospital, and support from friends and family."

Read Dennis' Story
thyroid-cancer-dimitrios

Dimitrios' Story

Thyroid Cancer
thyroid-cancer-dimitrios

Dimitrios' Story

Thyroid Cancer

"Not a day goes by that I am not thankful for the incredible care that I received and continue to receive at HUP."

Read Dimitrios' Story
lung-cancer-donna-lee

Donna-Lee's Story

Lung Cancer
lung-cancer-donna-lee

Donna-Lee's Story

Lung Cancer

"When I see all that has transpired in the last few years regarding lung cancer research, I can’t help but hope that maybe all the work the advocates are doing has something to do with it."

Read Donna-Lee's Story
Doug Olson

Doug's Story

Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

Doug's Story

Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

"Suddenly there was new hope and a way to fight."

Read Doug's Story
patient story teaser eileen

Eileen's Story

Ovarian Cancer
patient story preview eileen

Eileen's Story

Ovarian Cancer

"I've been given the opportunity to live."

Read Eileen's Story
breast-cancer-ellen

Ellen's Story

Breast Cancer
breast-cancer-ellen

Ellen's Story

Breast Cancer

"I wanted to fight this cancer with all I had. My family has already experienced so much loss, and I knew I needed to see the best – the best was at the Abramson Cancer Center."

Read Ellen's Story
patient story teaser eva

Eva's Story

BRCA2 Gene Mutation
patient story preview eva

Eva's Story

BRCA2 Gene Mutation

"I cried rivers of tears," she said. But she fought back and underwent a series of major preventative surgeries.

Read Eva's Story
Francie Lung Cancer Penn

Francie's Story

Lung Cancer

Francie's Story

Lung Cancer

“If I had gone to any other medical center, they might have missed the second tumor. And because I had an aggressive form of lung cancer, this potentially missed tumor would have killed me."

Read Francie's Story
Frank mcgee

Frank's Story

Prostate Cancer
Frank mcgee

Frank's Story

Prostate Cancer

"For me, I wanted to treat the cancer. I wanted to be done with it. That's why I picked proton therapy."

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patient story gene 2

Gene's Story

Anonymous BRCA mutation carrier and previvor
patient story gene2

Gene's Story

Anonymous BRCA mutation carrier and previvor

"My family history of cancer increased my concern for my children and grandchildren."

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patient story teaser harvey

Harvey's Story

BRCA2-related breast and prostate cancer
patient story preview harvey

Harvey's Story

BRCA2-related breast and prostate cancer

"The doctor looks at me and tells me I have breast cancer and there was just shock and surprise that I could get a 'women's disease.'"

Read Harvey's Story
Jackie Breast Cancer

Jackie's Story

Breast Cancer

Jackie's Story

Breast Cancer

“Dr. Serletti put me back together again, and that has made all the difference. I love the way I look, and most important, I am cancer-free.”

Read Jackie's Story
Jane, breast cancer and nipple tattooing patient

Jane's Story

Breast Cancer
Jane, breast cancer and nipple tattooing patient

Jane's Story

Breast Cancer

"I always knew I’d get the tattoos – so much so that I never even considered not getting them, despite my straight-arrow personality."

Read Jane's Story
patient story teaser jasmine

Jasmine's Story

BRCA2 mutation carrier and previvor
patient story preview jasmine

Jasmine's Story

BRCA2 mutation carrier and previvor

"It's a bit difficult to have to worry about one more thing that controls my destiny. But I have no choice but to take care of it."

Read Jasmine's Story
jeanna-teaser

Jeanna's Story

Anonymous BRCA mutation carrier and previvor
jeanna-full

Jeanna's Story

Anonymous BRCA mutation carrier and previvor

"I really didn't think too much about it. My mom sort of pushed it, saying, 'You should do this, it's free, it's part of a study."

Read Jeanna's Story
patient story teaser jim

Jim's Story

Head and Neck Cancer
patient story preview jim

Jim's Story

Head and Neck Cancer

"I can't say enough about the Abramson Cancer Center."

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John Kane

John's Story

Lung Cancer
John Kane

John's Story

Lung Cancer

“Penn has given me four cancer-free years to be with my family, to take vacations, to celebrate life. I am a medical miracle thanks to Penn.”

Read John's Story
patient story teaser john2

John's Story

Leukemia
patient story preview john2

John's Story

Leukemia

"I truly believe there will be a cure within my lifetime."

Read John's Story
patient story teaser john

John's Story

Head and Neck Cancer
patient story preview john

John's Story

Head and Neck Cancer

"Dr. Weinstein is a wonderfully confident surgeon, but he is also a tremendously caring person."

Read John's Story
Jules' head shot

Jules' Story

Metastatic Melanoma

Jules' Story

Metastatic Melanoma

"I was given four months to live... more than three years ago."

Read Jules' Story
patient story teaser julia

Julia's Story

Uterine Cancer
patient story preview julia

Julia's Story

Uterine Cancer

"Muir-Torre is a hiccup in my genetic repair cells that creates a high risk of many types of cancer. But ironically, this genetic mutation also saved my life."

Read Julia's Story
lung-cancer-kathy

Kathy's Story

Lung Cancer
lung-cancer-kathy

Kathy's Story

Lung Cancer

"Penn Medicine was a wonderful choice for us. They used a team approach."

Read Kathy's Story
breast-cancer-katrina

Katrina's Story

BRCA Mutation
breast-cancer-katrina

Katrina's Story

BRCA Mutation

"For me, knowledge is strength when you feel you have none."

Read Katrina's Story
Cure Is Within Banner with Ken

Ken's Story

Head and Neck Cancer
Cure Is Within Banner with Ken

Ken's Story

Head and Neck Cancer

"I had a team of 10 specialists all focused on me, all talking together, and maintaining communication with my primary care doctor in New Jersey. I didn’t need to think about anything but getting well."

Read Ken's Story
patient story teaser ken

Ken's Story

BRCA mutation carrier and previvor
patient story preview ken

Ken's Story

BRCA mutation carrier and previvor

"I already had braced myself for it, but with all that had been going on in my life, I am not quite sure I have even dealt with it to date."

Read Ken's Story
prostate survivor

Ken and Tim's Story

Prostate Cancer
prostate-cancer-ken-tim

Ken and Tim's Story

Prostate Cancer

"It’s unusual for a father to be diagnosed with prostate cancer after the son. It usually happens the other way around."

Read Ken and Tim's Story
Kevin in bike riding uniform

Kevin's Story

Leukemia
Kevin in bike riding uniform

Kevin's Story

Leukemia

"I'm happy to be a part of this ride so that I can share my own experiences at Penn and help raise money that stays local to help local people."

Read Kevin's Story
Kim's head shot

Kim's Story

Pancreatic Cancer

Kim's Story

Pancreatic Cancer

"You need to be someplace that's going to treat your cancer," she says, emphasizing the last two words. "Penn treated my cancer. They didn't treat pancreatic cancer. They treated my pancreatic cancer."

Read Kim's Story
patient story teaser kimberly

Kimberly's Story

Uterine Cancer
patient story preview kimberly

Kimberly's Story

Uterine Cancer

"I asked the physician if he could recommend a cancer treatment center in Philadelphia, and he said that the Abramson Cancer Center was the best place to go."

Read Kimberly's Story
kristina thyroid cancer

Kristina's Story

Thyroid Cancer

Kristina's Story

Thyroid Cancer

Kristina Black was only 23 when she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer.

Read Kristina's Story
patient story preview lauryn

Lauryn's Story

Breast Cancer

Lauryn's Story

Breast Cancer

"Everyone was on the same team – my team."

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Leslie Spencer

Leslie's Story

Breast Cancer
Leslie Spencer

Leslie's Story

Breast Cancer

"It’s ironic that a life-long believer in health and fitness who becomes a college health professor should get cancer. When I was diagnosed, people were shocked. My whole life has been devoted to healthful and whole living."

Read Leslie's Story
patient story preview lisa

Lisa's Story

BRCA-related ovarian cancer
patient story preview lisa

Lisa's Story

BRCA-related ovarian cancer

"My approach to life in general is pretty practical: to keep a sense of humor and to find what's positive in difficult circumstances."

Read Lisa's Story
Liz Barker Head Shot

Liz's Story

Breast Cancer
Liz Barker head shot

Liz's Story

Breast Cancer

"Today, at age 56, I am a 22-year cancer survivor."

Read Liz's Story
Mark Gettis

Mark's Story

Lung Cancer

Mark's Story

Lung Cancer

“Within days of starting treatment, my health turned around. I could breath easier. I went back to work, I was able to walk. It seemed like a miracle.”

Read Mark's Story
patient story teaser megan

Megan's Story

Sarcoma
patient story preview megan

Megan's Story

Sarcoma

"When I came to the Abramson Cancer Center (ACC) with stage 2 synovial sarcoma, I needed hope and I needed help. Dr. Kristy Weber treated my cancer in a way no one else could. She saved my leg and my life. Thanks to the sarcoma program at the ACC, I am a three-month cancer survivor."

Read Megan's Story
Childhood-cancer-survivor-melanie

Melanie's Story

Childhood Cancer
Melanie Gaffney full

Melanie's Story

Childhood Cancer

"We are very thankful for surviving and the chance to live our lives, but we also want to experience life, not just survive it."

Read Melanie's Story
Smiling Girl

Melissa's Story

Breast Cancer
Smiling Girl

Melissa's Story

Breast Cancer

"My mother left me many things, and one of the greatest things was Dr. Henry."

Read Melissa's Story
Michelle LeBeau

Michelle's Story

Thyroid Cancer
thyroid-cancer-michelle

Michelle's Story

Thyroid Cancer

"Those individuals who participate in clinical trials are heroes who are paying it forward to make the future better for those who follow in their foot steps."

Read Michelle's Story
BRCA-pamela

Pamela's Story

Breast Cancer
BRCA-pamela

Pamela's Story

Breast Cancer

"It seemed like breast cancer was always there."

Read Pamela's Story
brain-cancer-rachel

Rachel's Story

Brain Cancer
brain-cancer-rachel

Rachel's Story

Brain Cancer

"I am a cancer survivor with a duty to help people who are in similar straits."

Read Rachel's Story
esophageal-cancer-rick

Rick's Story

Esophageal Cancer
esophageal-cancer-rick

Rick's Story

Esophageal Cancer

"The Esophagectomy Support Group at Penn really helped me adjust and relate to others going through the same side effects I was experiencing."

Read Rick's Story
patient story teaser rob

Rob's Story

Melanoma
patient story preview rob

Rob's Story

Melanoma

"In 2005, I had it all – a beautiful wife, a high profile job on Wall Street, a wonderful home in the Philadelphia suburbs, and three adorable children. But our lives were about to dramatically change."

Read Rob's Story
Robert Scotti's head shot

Robert's Story

Leukemia

Robert's Story

Leukemia

"Penn treated my cancer through the whole three year process like I was the only patient in the entire hospital."

Read Robert's Story
sandy brca

Sandy's Story

Breast Cancer
sandy brca

Sandy's Story

Breast Cancer

"My grandmother died of breast cancer in her thirties. Consequently, my mother was always worried she'd develop the disease herself."

Read Sandy's Story
patient story teaser sarah

Sarah's Story

Ovarian Cancer
patient story preview sarah

Sarah's Story

Ovarian Cancer

"I had so many questions, 'Should I enroll in a trial? Which one? Where? Should I give the current treatment a little more time?' I was feeling confused, conflicted and fragile."

Read Sarah's Story
Stanley Williams

Stan's Story

Salivary Gland Cancer

Stan's Story

Salivary Gland Cancer

"Proton therapy is the most targeted radiation therapy and allows us to deliver the highest radiation dose to a tumor while minimizing damage to surrounding tissues."

Read Stan's Story
tonsil-cancer-susan

Susan's Story

Tonsil Cancer
tonsil-cancer-susan

Susan's Story

Tonsil Cancer

"I finished my radiation treatment on Christmas Eve. As I rang the bell, I felt relief and joy."

Read Susan's Story
patient story teaser susan

Susan's Story

Breast Cancer
patient story preview susan

Susan's Story

Breast Cancer

"The truth is, my 'healing' didn't begin until I began to tell my story — through writing and performing Susan's Undoing. And I had to tell ALL of it: the sadness, the anger, the sense of betrayal. My goal now is to give others the confidence to tell their stories."

Read Susan's Story
patient story teaser susan2

Susan's Story

Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor
patient story preview susan2

Susan's Story

Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor

"I am beyond grateful that funding from research enabled scientists to discover a drug that re-enabled me to at least control my cancer and now there are options to offset this terrible disease. I am here today thanks to research and breakthrough discoveries."

Read Susan's Story
susan schwartz

Susan's Story

Hodgkin Lymphoma
susan schwartz

Susan's Story

Hodgkin Lymphoma

"I live in London but I chose to have my treatment at the Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania Hospital under the care of Stephen Schuster, MD."

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ovarian cancer susan

Susan's Story

Ovarian Cancer
ovarian cancer susan

Susan's Story

Ovarian Cancer

"I didn’t even need pain medication after 48 hours. It really was a miracle."

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bg mobile womens cancer tara

Tara's Story

BRCA Mutation

Tara's Story

BRCA Mutation

“I knew at that moment I had to educate myself about breast cancer to protect my health and my life: I have a husband I love dearly and nieces and nephews who could be affected by my outcome.”

Read Tara's Story
patient story preview tasha

Tasha's Story

Breast Cancer
patient story preview tasha

Tasha's Story

Breast Cancer

"We're all living one life, we're all fighting to live."

Read Tasha's Story
patient story preview tom

Tom's Story

Sarcoma
patient story preview tom

Tom's Story

Sarcoma

"Throughout the ups and downs of my Dad’s illness, we never once heard any of his doctors say there was no hope or that there was nothing they could do."

Read Tom's Story
patient story teaser tom2

Tom's Story

Nasal Tumor

Tom's Story

Nasal Tumor

"After he received radiation therapy for a nasal tumor at Penn Radiation Oncology in 2013, local filmmaker Tom Ashley wanted to help others going through the same experience."

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breast-cancer-tomika

Tomika's Story

Breast Cancer
breast-cancer-tomika

Tomika's Story

Breast Cancer

"The first thing I needed to accept was this diagnosis is not a death sentence. It will only kill me if I let it and I have no intention of that happening. It was time to fight!"

Read Tomika's Story
Uschi breast cancer

Uschi's Story

Breast Cancer
breast-cancer-uschi

Uschi's Story

Breast Cancer

"We are not a charity. We are a crusade to rid the world of cancer — one vaccine at a time."

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patient story teaser vivian

Vivian's Story

Breast Cancer
patient story preview vivian

Vivian's Story

Breast Cancer

"A breast cancer diagnosis takes you to a place that you cannot know unless you have been there."

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Wendy Neilsen

Wendy's Story

Breast Cancer
wendy neilsen breast cancer

Wendy's Story

Breast Cancer

"Do you need ideas on how to help a friend going through treatment for cancer? I’ve put together a list of things that helped me while I underwent treatment for breast cancer."

Read Wendy's Story