(BPT) - Christmas Day 2012 will see Tim Daugherty back at the head of the dinner table where he belongs with his wife Debbie and their family in his hometown of Florence, Oregon. Two years ago, after an unexpected and frightening diagnosis during a routine medical exam, Tim, a 52-year-old fifth grade school teacher, wasn't sure he'd be around much longer to enjoy the simple pleasures of life with his wife of more than 30 years, their three grown children, and their two grandchildren.
Two years younger than Tim and married to him since she was 18-years-old, Debbie, a secretary at the local high school, has always looked after her husband. Tim is a dedicated school teacher who often gives all of his time and energy to his students. So it wasn’t unusual for Debbie to remind Tim to ask the doctor to perform a standard PSA test during his routine physical. Though he felt fine and had no symptoms, they were very surprised when the results from the test came back. His PSA was elevated and after a biopsy, Tim and Debbie learned he had aggressive prostate cancer.
“When I found out about Tim’s diagnosis of prostate cancer, I knew it was a challenge that we needed to overcome together,” said Debbie. “Tim is not the type to sit around and let something like this get him down; he is so full of energy and has such a strong passion for life, that he’ll do everything in his power to maintain our life together.”
Shortly after the diagnosis Tim underwent a prostatectomy and was put on hormone therapy. After several months, Tim’s PSA kept rising and they realized his cancer was continuing to grow. Knowing they’d need to fight this as a team, Debbie was committed to do whatever she could to help Tim during this difficult time. She continued to educate herself about Tim’s disease and his chances for survival. Through her never ending research efforts and communications with their local support group, she found out about PROVENGE®(sipuleucel-T), a breakthrough treatment option for certain men with advanced prostate cancer that uses immunotherapy to stimulate a patient’s own immune system to recognize the cancer cells in the body and attack them.
Shortly thereafter, the couple talked with Tim’s physician and found out he was eligible to receive the treatment. It was an exciting time for the both of them because this was another chance to help Tim fight the disease while possibly extending his life. Tim received his first infusion of PROVENGE in January 2012 and completed treatment by February.
“Tim is glad to have received the treatment and grateful he was able to take advantage of this opportunity,” said Debbie, “We‘re looking forward to spending the upcoming holidays with our loved ones.”
The weather on Christmas Day will likely be cold and rainy, typical for Florence, Oregon, but that won’t stop the high school sweethearts from celebrating the blessings of love and laughter for their family and their offspring -- particularly their 4-year-old granddaughter and 7-year-old grandson -- their pride and joy. Debbie says she'll never take any of that for granted again. "Along with the finest medical treatment available, we have tremendous support from our local patient support group, our church and our family and friends. That counts for a lot," said Debbie.
For more information about advanced prostate cancer, please visit www.provenge.com
PROVENGE Indication and Safety Information
PROVENGE is an autologous cellular immunotherapy for the treatment of asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic metastatic castrate resistant (hormone refractory) prostate cancer.
PROVENGE can cause serious reactions including those resulting from the infusion of the drug, which occur within 1 day of infusion, and strokes. Severe infusion reactions can include chills, fever, fatigue, weakness, breathing problems, dizziness, headache, high blood pressure, muscle ache, nausea, and vomiting.
The most common side effects reported with PROVENGE in clinical trials were chills, fatigue, fever, back pain, nausea, joint ache and headache. These are not all the possible side effects of PROVENGE treatment. For more information, please talk with your doctor.
For full prescribing information, visit www.provenge.com or call Dendreon on call at 1-877-336-3736.