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April 10 2019

An incurable cancer - Still happy

Suvi Koutola first caught a pneumonia so severe that she was hospitalized at the end of 2010. She got another pneumonia in summer 2011. It turned out that she suffered from advanced lung cancer. It was very hard for Suvi to understand. She did not smoke, her general condition was good and she had a healthy lifestyle.

As cytostatic treatment alone was not effective enough, her right lung was removed in autumn 2011. All necessary was removed and this woman returned to work the following spring. Unfortunately, the disease continued to proceed and metastases were detected in her left lung.

Since then her cancer has been treated in different ways. Radiation therapy was not an option as Suvi did not have enough lung capacity left. CyberKnife-device made a precision radiation therapy possible as the robot is highly agile and accurate and it spares normal tissue. A precision radiation therapy was highly beneficial as the tumours shrank. After six months though it was noted that the metastases have grown back to what they were in 2013.

Along the way Suvi has noted what a tenacious hold the cancer has on her. She recognizes the fact that cancer is a chronic disease but she lives a normal everyday life between the treatments. She attends Cancer Center every three months for a check-up. She describes the staff as very friendly and hands on, she feels that she is taken care of and is always welcomed.

Suvi does not plan her retirement days any more. Instead she fulfils the goals that she genuinely wants to reach. She has realized that she is happy and she is not ruining her life by worrying about things that she cannot influence.