Mavis Nye shares her story of mesothelioma, an asbestos-related cancer in the lining of the lungs.
After four years on chemotherapy, Mavis was able to join a clinical trial in 2014 at The Royal Marsden, which tested the effectiveness of the immunotherapy drug pembrolizumab. “I joined the trial in May 2014 and felt so well on it, compared to chemotherapy. I was able to live my life and the mesothelioma started shrinking. In April 2016 I was told I had what they call a ‘complete response’ and had no signs of mesothelioma at all. I was the first patient in the UK to be effectively ‘cured’ of this disease. “I started campaigning against asbestos – attending conferences, giving media interviews, writing a blog and volunteering as a patient representative to help researchers working on clinical trials. I was rushing along enjoying my new life. I was so busy my mind had blocked the disease out. I didn’t have mesothelioma. I wasn’t ill, I was a survivor. I had survivor’s guilt even, as many of my mesothelioma friends have died. Then zap, out of the blue, I found out last month that I have some new lesions. I had such great hopes I had beaten this and now I’m back at the starting line. “The good news is, I can re-join the clinical trial next month. I’ll be the first patient to have this top-up so they will learn from me what happens. So I’m totally cheered up that they will be able to use my case in such a way, to further their research. “A clinical trial saved my life once, now I’m hoping it will do the same again"
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