Lisa Velasco, 42, had vague symptoms, and was treated for them for six months prior to a definitive diagnosis of chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) in 2005. The news was a “complete shock” and she quickly learned the importance of becoming informed and obtaining good medical care. With most of her family in another country, her husband took on the critical role of caregiver and was her “everything” as she started and responded to treatment. Today the Jefferson, Ga. woman, her husband, Angel, and their children, Michael, 17, and Alex, 12, look forward to her “growing to be an old lady” and she says life now is “great.” She says the statistics tell it all--and she’s grateful for new treatments for CML patients.
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By Eliot Finkelstein