Please note that the pancan.org website will be undergoing maintenance between Wednesday, Nov. 26, and Friday, Nov. 28, and may be unavailable. We apologize for the inconvenience.

See All Stories

Updated Survivor Story: Ashley Banter

11/03/2013
I was 24 when I heard “you have inoperable stage IV, metastatic pancreatic cancer, and it has spread to your liver.”  The day was November 27, 2012, and although I had been bracing myself for a week before my actual diagnosis, I was still in shock.  I was not supposed to be diagnosed with cancer.  EVER.  And yet, there I was, already thinking about my funeral.  I had already decided I did not want treatment.  I did not want to spend my last months sick.  But, God put my surgeon in my life for a reason.  He was devastated at my wanting-to-give-up attitude and insisted I tried chemotherapy (that was my only option).  So, I said I would try.

Every person in the medical field I ran into said, “You're just too young!”  And I thought, “Tell me something I don't know.”  But, scan after scan, treatment after treatment, my tumors were shrinking.  My pain was going away.  After 6 difficult months of therapy, in June of 2013, my scan showed the seven spots in my liver were down to three and all where under 1 cm in size, some smaller.  The tumor in my pancreas, which was around 4 cm to start was down to 1.3 cm.  My body was even having a delayed reaction to the chemotherapy, and they still shrank.  Everyone, including me, was astonished.  Surgery was now a possibility.  I never imagined surgery for me.

On August 23, 2013, I had surgery to have 60% of my pancreas (not the Whipple procedure), my spleen, and spots on my liver removed and then my liver was treated with radiation.  It was a very rough surgery.  I had 50 staples, and I now have a 14” scar on my abdomen.  But I do not want it to ever go away.  I look at it every day with pride and hope.

On August 25, 2013, my surgeon, and friend by this time, told me I was cancer free.  I could not help but hug him!  This man, by the work of God, saved my life.  I had a scan this past October, and everything looks great.  I had a death sentence, but I refused to die.  I will share my story to all to show hope.  I was given so much hope during my darkest time, and I want to spread it as much as I can.  This cancer is not discriminant.  It does not care about gender, race, or even, as in my case, age.  But hope will always be there.  God does work miracles and I truly believe I was saved for a reason.



See All Stories


©2014 Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. All rights reserved.
Pancreatic Cancer Action Network®, PanCAN®, PurpleStride®, PurpleRide®, PurpleBowl®, TeamHope®, Know It. Fight It. End It.®, Wage Hope℠, Know Your Tumor℠ and Powerful Knowledge. Personal Treatment.℠ are the trademarks of Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, Inc.

The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is registered as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Contributions to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law. The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network’s tax identification number is # 33-0841281.