Stephanie's F*CK CANCER fund
Since then, Stephanie has enjoyed her family – watching her beautiful son, Noah George grow into a sweet little boy – and has taken the time to appreciate her blessings in life. She changed jobs and now works doing cancer research at Nemours Children's Hospital. It has been 20 months since her last treatment and her most recent CT scan showed that the cancer has returned. On June 16, 2016, Stephanie was told that the cancer spread to her lymph nodes in the pelvic area and secondary malignant growths had developed in her lungs and neck. She will begin more intense chemotherapy starting this week where 3 drugs will be administered i.v. in 21 day cycles for 6 months. As of now, the doctors at Johns Hopkins will not provide a prognosis, as the only true prognosis is determined by hope, strength, and faith.
I am asking for your help and support for Stephanie – for her emotional and mental well being while fighting this horrific disease. Please donate if you can, to help stave off medical costs, time off of work, and travel too and from treatments, so that Stephanie can concentrate on healing and the important things in life. I am doing this as a surprise for Stephanie – she would never ask this of anyone. I would appreciate any help ya’ll can give because when Stephanie beats this cancer, I don’t want her spending the rest of her life worried and stressed over debt. I want her to enjoy and live the life for which she fought so hard.
At last update, Stephanie was participating in a clinical trial at Johns Hopkins involving immunotherapy. As Stephanie's condition changed, she became ineligible to continue the trial around July 2017. Since July, Stephanie underwent more radiation and chemotherapy.
The latest radiation treatments, with an objective to reduce the pain Stephanie was having, ended this January. At that point, it was determined additional radiation or chemotherapy would not be beneficial. The focus changed to improving the quality of life and keeping Stephanie as pain free as possible for the remainder of her battle with cancer.
On February 12, in-home hospice began. Pain management/medicines were increased as Steph's level of pain increased. Over the past couple of weeks, Stephanie's condition has digressed. Stephanie's family is spending time with her, enjoying each day they have left with her, and hopeful for a peaceful transition over the coming days.
Continued thoughts, prayers, ad support are appreciated.
Love you all,
The Tantzer Family
In September, I was able to enroll in a clinical trial at Johns Hopkins involving immunotherapy. The purpose of this particular study is to determine if 2 "drugs" that are FDA approved for metastatic melanoma can also be effective in other cancers that are late stage or that are metastastic. It involves infusions one day, every other week. So, a little more often then the chemo regimen I was on but with a lot fewer side effects. Very soon after stopping chemo, my hair started to grow back...yay!! And better still...I don't get sick or weak or achy after these treatments.
At the end of November 2016, i had my first CT scan since starting this treatment. Unfortunately, it showed growth of almost all my tumors. However, my doctors were not discouraged...they were hopeful. The purpose of immunotherapy is to try and force your body's own immune system to attack the cancer that is present. So they were hopeful that the increase in size was in fact due to an infiltration of immune cells attaching my cancer. So we decided to keep going, keep trying this therapy, and keep hoping.
In the beginning of December I was hospitalized for ketoacidosis and diagnosed with Type I diabetes. They suspect this is caused by the treatments because my immune system is overactive and decided to attack my pancreas. I recovered and spent some time getting used to my newest disease and, it is getting more manageable every day.
On to the good news:
I had a CT scan on January 11, 2017...a day I don't think I will easily forget. The scan showed shrinkage of some lung nodules, shrinkage of a few lymph nodes, and no change in some other areas. So in other words....the treatment seems to be is working!!! I immediately starting crying happy tears and resolved to not take this for granted or anything else in my life. We got some great news...finally...and I will have many, many, more treatments to go. But, I am very hopeful that the next scan with be better than the next and than the next!
So once again, I thank you from the bottom of my soul for your support, well wishes, positive vibes, and prayers! Keep'em coming because there is more work to do...but we got this!!!
Love you all,
I finished 3 rounds of chemo at the end of August and had a CT scan to check on the progress. Unfortunately, the scan showed the chemo was not working and the cancer is spreading in my lungs and lymph nodes. My oncologist at Johns Hopkins has suggested trying a clinical trial and luckily there is a clinical trial at Hopkins to treat metastatic cancer for which I qualify. It is using immunotherapy to influence my body to fight against the cancer cells on it's own. This type of therapy has been shown in other trials to be successful at combating the spread of disease and in some cases putting patients into cancer remission. I am very excited to start and my first treatment starts tomorrow, 9/21. It will be an intense regimen of treatments with lots of traveling to downtown Baltimore. I will continue on this treatment indefinitely, as long as it is working. And it will work!!! I know it!!
I want to thank you all for all your love and support. It has truly overwhelmed me and made me feel very lucky to have so many people who care about me and my family. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Please keep those prayers and positive energy coming our way! The fight isn’t over yet and I need all the support I can get to win! And, we will win!!!
I am glad to announce that today, Stephanie has completed her first round of treatments - one 6 hour infusion followed by 2 days of shorter infusions - and she says "it feels so amazing to be done with this first round"! She will spend the next 21 days getting healthy with wellness teas and miracle mineral broth.
We cannot thank all of you enough! Stephanie says she "tears up every time she looks at her page and is so thankful to all of you!". Let's keep the momentum going and keep sharing!
Peace and love to all of you wonderful people!