Friday, 30 October 2009

Woman beats invasive aspergillosis to get married

Trish Dunlop was hit with the devastating news that she suffered from the same leukemia that killed her mother some years before. Fearing the worst she attended hospital for treatment. During chemotherapy her long term partner Will proposed and they resolved to marry soon.

Trish was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). Long term recovery from AML varies according to a number of factors and can be as high as 50-70% for some groups of patients but overall a recovery rate of 20-30% is currently achieved. Trish had her work cut out to survive this cancer.

Unfortunately the worst was yet to come. Some types of leukemia cause a severe weakening of the patients ability to fight off infections. After 3 rounds of chemotherapy her body was weak and her immune system weaker still. She fell victim to an aspergillosis infection in her lungs. Aspergillosis is tough to treat at the best of times but if the patient has a weak immune system they are particularly up against it in the fight for survival. Things looked bleak when her doctors could do no more and early in December 2008 gave her 2 hours to live.

2 days later Trish woke up on the anniversary of her mother's death. From that point on she gradually improved, beating back both AML and aspergillosis. She left hospital a month later and was married six months later in the summer of  2009.

This is a good news story but it was a close run thing. Presumably Trish's body recovered enough of its immune system just in time to beat back the fungus. The message is that there is always hope even in the direst of circumstances, never give up hope.

1 comment:

Stacey, California, USA said...

Thank you for posting this story, my mother is fighting invasive aspergillus and it's hard to find hope sometimes with this hideous disease. Thank you for this uplifting story. Miracles can happen.

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