Patient Stories

Ultimately, we measure quality on a very personal level -- each patient's life that we save and each patient who has a better quality of life because of the skill of our physicians or a new treatment option we provide. Our commitment to quality is renewed by every patient’s story. We are pleased to share some of these stories with you.

Eloise Orr

Breast Cancer Team Combines Quality of Life With Quality Treatment
At age 20, Eloise Orr was diagnosed with breast cancer, the same disease that her mother died from at age 35. Over several years, Orr battled recurrent breast cancer and brain tumors, but was determined to not let cancer prevent her from achieving her dreams. "We tailored an entire regimen around her plans so this [treatment] wouldn't be an obstacle in her life fulfillment," said David Song, MD.

Howard Dybedock

LVAD Surgery Restores the Life of a Heart Failure Patient
A left ventricular assist device not only saved Howard Dybedock’s life, it restored it. Before receiving the device that boosts the pumping action of his heart, Dybedock had so little energy that he found himself stopping to catch his breath after just a few steps. Today, he’s back at work running his company. Dybedock also serves as a resource to help other LVAD patients get acclimated to living with the lifesaving implant.

Atia Lutarewych

Teamwork Lessens Family Leukemia Load
The team approach at the University of Chicago Medicine Comer Children's Hospital helped keep Atia Lutarewych's family on an even keel during their daughter's treatment for acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL). “In the beginning, Atia’s diagnosis devastated us and we knew that we couldn’t do it alone,” Atia's mother, Laura, said. “The staff understood that Steve and I needed support, too. They clearly explained everything and were never condescending with our concerns. They’ve become a big part of our lives.”

Pamela Hsieh

A Race Against Time: Surviving Stroke at Age 19
At age 19, Pamela Hsieh suffered a stroke and was whisked to the University of Chicago medical campus via helicopter where a care team was ready to provide immediate, life-saving care. After treatment at the University of Chicago, Hsieh has regained enough movement to hike mountains in the West.

Rick and Victoria Strong

Father and Daughter Fight Through Crohn's Disease
After several years of medical treatment for Crohn's disease that offered little relief, Rick Strong turned to University of Chicago inflammatory bowel disease experts for help. Our specialists offered Strong surgical and medical options that helped control his flare-ups. When his daughter, Victoria, showed signs of the disease, Strong again turned to University of Chicago experts to manage Victoria's Crohn's disease.

Cameron Dykstra

Innovations in Stem Cell Transplant Allow Parent to Become Donor: Cameron's Story
Cameron Dykstra was born with severe combined immunodeficiency syndrome (SCID), a condition commonly known as "bubble boy disease." The stem cells in the infant’s bone marrow did not produce functioning lymphocytes -- cells that play a crucial role in fighting disease. But within a week of coming to the University of Chicago Medicine Comer Children’s Hospital, his father’s donated blood stem cells – purified using a new, innovative technique -- were transplanted to Cameron where they took over the task of defending the infant’s body against harmful bacteria and viruses.

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