Skip to comments.Poliovirus kills area college student's brain tumor
Posted on 04/29/2014 6:01:28 PM PDT by Gamecock
SPARTANBURG, S.C. -- It is an incredible story of a girl with a rare and deadly form of cancer seemingly saved by a shocking experimental treatment at Duke Medical Center.
Don't let her easy disposition fool you. She smiles a lot, laughs easily. But doctors will tell you Stephanie Lipscomb should be dead right now.
The odds werent good. They didnt expect me to live more than two years I dont think.
The University of South Carolina nursing student was just 20, a sorority girl, part time waitress, and all around girl next door when she began having migraines.
She was diagnosed with a rare and deadly stage four Glioblastoma, a brain tumor the size of a tennis ball.
It was shocking, scary, mind-blowing. I mean I was 20. Its not very common to have cancer, especially in your head, at 20.
Doctors were aggressive. They had to be.
I had surgery. I went through 10 weeks of radiation therapy. I had oral and IV chemotherapy going at the same time as radiation, Stephanie says.
But just a few months later, the cancer was back. Stephanie got the news at Duke Medical Center's world renowned Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center.
They gave me and my mom some time alone in the room, and of course we cried and held each other and hugged. And then my doctor came back in and she was like, Stephanie, we have a couple of options.
One was a shocking, experimental study.
She told me, This has not been tested on humans yet. You would be the first human to ever receive this. As soon as she said it, she was like, Were going inject polio into your brain. I was like okay, lets do it!
In May 2012, doctors at Duke injected a modified version of the polio virus into the tumor in Stephanie's brain. A researcher there spent 20 years figuring out the virus would attach to the bad cells -- and kill them -- without harming Stephanie in any way.
Looking back, Im like oh my gosh, I cannot believe I agreed to do that so quickly. And like Ive told other people before, I knew that was God.
Incredibly, last July doctors told Stephanie her tumor was gone.
Her MRI from this January shows only scar tissue remains.
Her story is featured in this weeks People magazine.
Stephanie is cancer free as she gets ready to celebrate the 23rd birthday doctors said she'd never see.
This is still in the experimental stages. A handful of other patients are now involved. The hope is that this same treatment can someday be used to fight other cancers as well.
Stephanie is headed back to Duke this summer to work as a nursing assistant.
Good news from SC.
Ain’t it though?
Ping list worthy?
Thanks for posting .I’m from both Carolinas in a way, and I loved the story.
Who wakes up in the morning and thinks, “You know, if I modify that polio virus, I bet I can get it to kill cancer cells!!!”
Yep, it’s called innovation and I hate to think what ObamaCare is going to ultimately do to things like this.
Ping! (Thanks, Gamecock!)
I have lost a beloved niece, my cousins husband, and a long time friend to glioblastomas. This is fantastic news because a glioblastoma is a death sentence.
Thanks for the ping!
This is fabulous, thank you for posting!
Thanks for the ping! This is great news!
I contracted polio at age two (1947). It attacks the myelin sheath tissue around nerves. If the tissue in the blastoma is likened to the myelin sheath then it stands to reason it would attack that. I wonder, the girl’s age is such that she was vaccinated for polio, so the virus would not work against her tissues; but the cancer blastoma is not her tissue!
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