Colon cancer patient, Robert (Rob) DeuPree has been living with terminal cancer for more than five years. He’s had surgery, radiation and other treatments, including chemotherapy to stop the growth of his tumors and the spread of the disease to other organs.
DeuPree is living with 4 nodules, 2 in each lung that are questionable, but they are very small. His blood markers have gone up, so he’s getting tests more often to watch the cancer a little more closely.
He was recently invited to attend the Renown Institute for Cancer
Tumor Board. The Board is a multidisciplinary team made of up more than 40 medical professionals who deal with the treatment of cancer. They address individual cases, including DeuPree’s cancer.
“I have felt pretty comfortable about my treatment as it has gone along because I think I have wonderful physicians, Dr. Macherla, Christina Alsop and Dr. Ambika. Knowing this is behind the scenes gives me even greater confidence in the hematology/oncology work that Renown is doing,” says DeuPree. “It’s just amazing.”
DeuPree says that over the last 4 to 5 years when a drug has stopped being effective his doctors added another drug to see what happened. “I’ve had 3 different, fairly heavy-duty drugs and the one that I am on now seems to be the one that is working the best,” says DeuPree.
“I’m sure one of these drugs will run out of time. My body will become used to the drug,” says DeuPree. “What I’m told by the physicians is ‘there are plenty of drugs out there and they are developing more of them every day’, so if one of these drugs doesn’t work we’ll just try another drug.”
The cancer drugs have caused DeuPree to lose his hair. He is more tired now and has gained weight.
“The worst part is probably not knowing. I know what is going to get me, it’s going to be cancer. I just don’t know when. And so far, it seems like it is going to be awhile. And I am 73-years-old, I can’t really ask for more than that,” says DeuPree. “With the treatment I’m getting and the people that are associated with trying to make me stay alive, I’m not looking at much of a downside. My quality of life is great.”
See part one of Rob DeuPree’s cancer journey.
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