Saturday, October 17, 2015

A Transplant For the Cure - Tired, Weary and Worn

Kyle Crane, Karen Luehrman, Pearl Luehrman,
Lois Luehrman Crane, Lindsey Crane, Janette Luehrman Fuller,
Cindy Thomas.
My sister was diagnosed with CLL/SLL at the age of 54. She started receiving traditional chemotherapy treatments in St. Louis in 2008. She was in remission by the end of the year and was able to regain her overall health and live an active lifestyle.

In early 2010, the cancer was back again. Karen did not like the side-effects of chemotherapy and actively sought out alternative treatments. She engaged the services of a physician who specialized in holistic natural healing treatments.

She also relied heavily on her strong faith in the healing power of Jesus Christ.  However, her oncologist convinced her that she was dealing with a serious disease and she would need more chemo treatments to keep it under control.

In August, our father had a major heart attack. He passed away on October 14. Karen was taking chemo treatments at the time of his death. She was at the top of her game when she sang at our father's funeral on October 17. You would have never known that she was fighting her own battle with a serious disease as she sang some of our father's favorite hymns.

By early 2011, Karen was back in remission and feeling almost as well as her pre-cancer days. She would not have to face more cancer treatments until late

A chronic disease is defined as "continuing a long time or recurring frequently". CLL will respond to treatment but it will come back over and over again. The medical community believes that the only hope for a cure is a stem cell transplant. Karen rejected this option for a long time because of the long, hard recovery period. She eventually came to understand that this was her only chance for a cure.

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