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Pancreatic Cancer Patient Stories

Michael Laurenzi

Kidney Cancer;  Pancreatic Cancer

Michael Laurenzi

Kidney Cancer;  Pancreatic Cancer

'I am very lucky the tick bit me, because I had no symptoms and no idea that I had cancer. I have nothing but the highest regard for those doctors and their teams. They are so caring and compassionate, and they literally gave me my life back.'

Barbara Lanza

Pancreatic Cancer

Barbara Lanza

Pancreatic Cancer

In January 2010, Barbara Lanza, who had just turned 52, was admitted to the emergency room four times during a trip to Florida. When she returned home, Barabara met with her doctor, where more tests were ordered; the tests revealed a mass on the head of her pancreas. Barbara's doctor referred her to Fox Chase Cancer Center, where she was diagnosed with a rare form of pancreatic cancer. She underwent chemotherapy and radiation before she was ready for a complex surgery, followed by one last procedure: a stent put into her collapsed superior mesenteric vein. Barbara has recovered well and is so pleased she received treatment at Fox Chase. “I had the best team–Dr. Denlinger, Dr. Karachristos, and Dr. Hayes did everything they could to save me. And Dr. Hoffman? What can I say? He’s not head of pancreatic surgery for nothing! He’s the best there is,” she said.

Shirley Shackelford

Pancreatic Cancer

Shirley Shackelford

Pancreatic Cancer

By 2009, I had experienced three bouts of pancreatitis that started with excruciating pain. Each bout sent to me to a hospital for several days where I received IV nourishment. For five years, I worried that I would once again have to deal with another round of pain and treatment.

Stephen McNamara

Pancreatic Cancer;  Prostate Cancer

Stephen McNamara

Pancreatic Cancer;  Prostate Cancer

Raised with 12 siblings in Ireland, Stephen McNamara enjoyed his childhood and his country. However, in 1949, when the opportunity presented itself to come to America, he acted on it. Mary, a nursing student whom he met in England, followed her heart and came to America to marry Stephen. They settled in the Philadelphia area and raised five children. During this time, Stephen was drafted and served stateside during the Korean War. Not long after, he became a citizen of the United States. "I just fell in love with America," shares Stephen.

Angela Fedele

Breast Cancer;  Kidney Cancer;  Pancreatic Cancer

Angela Fedele

Breast Cancer;  Kidney Cancer;  Pancreatic Cancer

In 1983, Angela Fedele was diagnosed with breast cancer at the same time she was going through a divorce. This 42-year-old mother of four felt that her whole life was crumbling apart. "I felt totally alone and full of despair," shared Angela, who put her health in the hands of her surgeon. After the mastectomy to remove the cancer, Angela tried to pick up the pieces of her life and move on. Little did she know this was just the beginning of a long journey with cancer that would span more than two decades.

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