My husband Ken Eazell, was first diagnosed with Mantel Cell Lymphoma in February 2011. His cancer was found during a preventive colonoscopy. His mother died of Colon Cancer in 1996. Knowing that Colon cancer is heredity and being the age 46 he knew he should start getting checked. During the colonoscopy it was determined immediately that he had a cancerous tumor in his colon. After a long month of waiting for Pathology to confirm cancer diagnoses the results came back as a surprise to all of us as Stage 3 Lymphoma. Mantel Cell Lymphoma. Lymphoma already developing or spreading to the colon. A rare form of Lymphoma with a 17% survival rate.
After meeting a few Oncologists and getting a couple of different opinions, we chose Dr. Gira Patel at St. Jude Fullerton Oncology department. It was determine then that Ken would complete 6 months of R-Chop combo of Chemo and end it with Auto-Stem Cell Transplant at Cedars Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles, California. The R-chop chemo worked and that got Ken into remission so it was onto the Auto Stem cell transplant. On August 2nd, 2011 Ken endured a Autologous-Stem Cell Transplant. This is where a patient reserves his or her own stem cell right before receiving high dose of chemo. After the chemo is given that destroys the patients bone marrow then their stem cell are transplanted back into the patient. This creates a fresh immune system to keep the Lymphoma away. Ken spent 3 weeks in Cedars Hospital and came the stem cell was considered successful.
Ken was in remission for 3 years until August 2014, when Ken went in for a PET_CT Scan for his check-up. Our greatest fear was confirmed, relapsed Mantel Cell Lymphoma, but this time developing a tumor in his stomach. We were heart broken. After consulting with Dr. Patel, and our Dr. at Cedars Sinai it was determined that this time around that Ken would need to complete Chemotherapy and receive an Allogeneic-Stem Cell Transplant. An Allogeneic Transplant is where the patient gets a donors stem cell planted in them to create a whole new immune system to fight the Lymphoma. The donor needs to be a close blood type matching to the patient and luckily Ken’s brother Jim was a close enough match to donate his stem cells to Ken.
In September of 2014 Ken went through chemo again for 5 months and we were lucky to have the chemo successfully work once again. So on July 1st, 2015, at The City of Hope Hospital, Ken had his brother’s stem cells put into him. Ken spent 4 weeks in the hospital recovering so his immune system would be strong enough for him to come home. Today Ken is celebrating Day+172 Post Stem Cell Transplant. Tomorrow he will get the results from his current PET_Ct scan. We are praying that his brother’s cells are doing their job and he will continue to be cancer free.
The last 4 years has been challenging to our family. We have a 19-year-old son Jacob and our daughter Alicia is 8 years old. This past summer Ken spent 26 days in City of Hope. We are grateful for our son who took on all responsibility and was able to take care of our daughter and all household tasks. He was one of our greatest support system.
In an instant, your life changes forever. Through out all of Ken’s treatments and long hospital stays he always had a positive attitude. With his faith on his side, he fought this battle twice and conquered it!