The American Cancer Society estimates there will be over 228,000 new cases of lung cancer this year and as for pancreatic cancer there is a one in 78 chance you or someone you love will be diagnosed.
But a local oncologist insists these diseases do not have to be a death sentences.
Pat Merwin never smoked a cigarette in her life — yet four and a half years ago, this Orange County woman’s world came crashing down when her doctor revealed positive test results for lung cancer.
“There’s no way to explain to somebody what in the course of a week from going to the gym to being told you have stage 4 cancer and likely only a few months to live,” Pat Merwin, cancer survivor.
Echoed across town in a different physician’s office … husband, father, and grandfather, Steve Lockwood, was shocked when severe abdominal pain proved to be pancreatic cancer.
“We had just celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary, said Lockwood.
Again – two different grave cancer concern,s but the same unwavering will to live brought these Southlanders to make an appointment with Doctor Robert Nagourney of Rational Therapeutics.
“We are an evolutionary step in what will be the revolution in cancer therapies,” said Dr. Nagourney.
Here in his long beach office …
“We have cured patients with lung cancer and very difficult diseases,” said Dr. Nagourney.
The medical and laboratory director practices personalized cancer care where each patient’s unique cells are tested against a number of chemotherapies so treatment is tailor-made for each individual.
“He approaches it from a tailor your treatment to what your cancer cells respond everybody else just more or less has a standard cocktail you have pancreatic cancer, ok this is what we’re going to treat,” said Steve Lockwood.
“We have to do something different and if I’m breaking the mold, if they call me disruptive than, I’ll live with that,” said Dr. Nagourney.
Cancer-free, thanks to this alternative treatment approach, has given pat a new breath and the Lockwood’s a new lease on life.
“I just wish every patient had the opportunity to at least know this kind of testing is available,” said Lockwood.
For more info on Dr Nagourney or his book check out the following links,
by Kimberly Cornell, KTLA News