Dec 17, 2003 - 12:32 am
Hello, my name is Leslie. I am 20 years old and am a 7 year survivor of Hodgkin's stage 4. I was 13 at the time of my diagnosis so I was classified as a childhood case.
I went un-diagnosed for over a year. By the time my pediatrician referred me on to Children's Hospital the disease was already in my bone marrow. I received 8 months of COPP/ABV and 6 weeks of high dose radiation. My parents were given the option of going through with a BMT but decided not to since I was in remission. I'm so thankful I didn't have a BMT because who knows what the outcome would've been if I had. They are extremely risky.
I am happy and healthy today. I had a setback a few years ago when I was diagnosed with tacycardiya of the heart. This means I had a rapid heartrate. My oncologist and cardiologist think it was from the adriamycin but we may never know. I had a pacemaker put in to control my heartrate. If you ask me, it's just a small price to pay for having my life back :-)
This may sound strange to some people, but I feel very fortunate to have been "chosen" to get cancer at a young age. I don't think I could imagine my life today had I not had cancer. I'd go through it all again If I had to. I am a completely different person than before. Life is so much more precious when you're faced with your own mortality. I look at my disease as a blessing.
Anyways, sorry to ramble on. I'm so glad to have found this board. I look forward to reading your survivor stories :-)