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Caregiver Story: Caleigh Coates

On May 31, 2013, my dad, Bernie, came home to tell me that he had been diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer that had spread to his liver.  He was 52, and the only way it was found was because he had jaundice.  What made his cancer worse was that he had Trousseau syndrome.  This is a syndrome that is characterized by a patient having blood clots caused by cancer.  At one point, he had blood clots in both legs from his waist to his toes.  He was unable to walk or even stand for a short period of time.  After having a thrombolysis to remove some of the blood clots, he immediately started chemotherapy.

Because he was so young and fit, they were able to put him on an aggressive combination chemotherapy that was made up of four different drugs.  Luckily, my dad had none of the expected side effects from this chemotherapy combination, except the hiccups!  My dad had a CT scan on July 27, 2013.  After receiving the results, we saw a miracle.  Just two months after being diagnosed, there was no measurable disease in the pancreas or the liver.  He is in complete remission now, and has qualified for a clinical trial for a new vaccine specifically for patients with pancreatic cancer.

His positive attitude and faith, along with prayers and support of his family and friends, have helped him push through this difficult journey.  He has never lost faith, and our entire family could not be more ecstatic with the results.

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