Jayden was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme just last year, one month before his 17th birthday. He had to undergo surgery and combined radiotherapy with temozolomide. Temozolomide was then discontinued, as the tumor reocurred, and another surgery was performed followed by chemotherapy. In the last months, Jayden´s condition worsened rapidly with increased immobility and loss of vision. He was unable to open his left eye. That is when Jayden first came to the Hallwang Clinic, and was started on a combined immunotherapeutic strategy.
Now, 2 months later, Jayden’s condition has improved, he has started moving his legs and arms again, and is able to open his left eye occasionally. It is still a way to go, but we are happy Jayden is gaining more strength every day now.
Refractory relapsed Stage IV ovarian cancer now 3 years in complete remission under immunotherapy
The hope and aim behind cancer immunotherapy is that it induces a durable, long-lasting immune response. One of our patients, Minkara N., was diagnosed with metastatic ovarian cancer in 2012, and after surgery she received chemotherapy – Taxol, Avastin, Gemcitabine and Caelyx. Unfortunately, MRI showed persistent pelvic metastasis and so Minkara came to Hallwang Clinic for further treatment. Initially, in 2013, a transarterial chemoembolization was performed and she received antibody treatment, whereupon remission status was reached. Treatment was escalated to different checkpoints on several occasions together with further specific immunotherapy (tumor tissue was analyzed thoroughly before treatment). Minkara reached complete remission in 2015, and three years later we are happy to confirm that she is still in complete remission. For maintenance treatment she now receives solely immunotherapy 3 times per year. We are so happy that targeted cancer immunotherapy has been working for you, Minkara and wish you all the best for the coming years!
About a year ago we posted Matt´s story, a young gentleman with a rare type of sarcoma, who travelled with his mother Jennifer all the way from Australia to us! Back then he said ” Everything was laid out before me, and I was offered a targeted approach, something which had not been offered to me previously. After two visits to the clinic I saw and felt a noticeable difference with my tumors. It is safe to say that the targeted has worked in my case, and I’m very pleased with the results.”
So now, one year later, we wanted to see how he was going and how he is responding to treatment. We are so happy to hear from Matt´s father that Matt and his family „ are pleased with the progress, Matt has returned to work as an Engineer doing 3 days a week and living independently approximately three hours away from our home. Matt appears to be healthier and has gained some weight (now 54kg).” Matt and his family are grateful for the” live saving contribution to Matthew’s survival he received by your wonderful Doctors and medical staff.”
We are happy to hear that the last PET scan reveals that “overall most lesions have shown a reduction in size or avidity”.
Matt, we wish you and your family all the best for the future and the best treatment outcome possible.
We want to share with you Hande’s story. Hande is a 36-year-old lovely young lady and mother of a 2-year-old wonderful daughter.
Unfortunately, at age 35, Hande was diagnosed with triple-negative breast cancer, at time of diagnosis no metastases were present. In February 2017, she received her last dose of neoadjuvant chemotherapy, followed by surgery removing a 2.3 cm tumor and sentinel lymph nodes. Radiotherapy was completed in April 2017. In September 2017, a PET scan then showed multiple metastases to the lung, liver, lymph nodes and bone. On MRI, also brain metastases were diagnosed. Hande and her family were devastated.
In October 2017, Hande came to the Hallwang Clinic and received a combined immunotherapeutic approach with chemotherapy and personalized strategies, along with supportive treatments. Now, before the year 2017 ended, Hande and her family received the wonderful news that she is in complete remission! Her last scans from December show no sign of disease anymore, also her MRI of the brain is completely clear.
We would like to share with you another story highlighting the impact of treatment with anti-GD-2, a trifunctional antibody, one of the latest members of the trifunctional Ab platform.
One of our patients (male, 58 yrs old) was diagnosed with melanoma and metastases to the liver, bone, spleen, lung and peritoneum. He was previously treated with chemotherapy, sorafenib, hyperthermia and dendritic cell vaccine. At the clinic, he received Anti-GD-2 treatment for 6 weeks, side effects were mild and well controlled. 10 weeks after, a PET scan was performed and already showed remarkable reduction of metastases, see images below.
Anti-GD-2 treatment can be applied in many different solid tumors and can induce a therapeutic vaccination (see diagram).
One of our patients, KA (wants to stay anonymous) was diagnosed with metastatic renal cell carcinoma in 2006. After nephrectomy and a tyrosine kinase inhibitor for a year he was symptomfree for 8 years, but then unfortunately developed recurrent disease with lung metastases in 2014, followed by a segment resection of the lung on two occasions. After this, he turned to us for further diagnostics and treatment, a Next-generation Sequencing and screening for tumor antigens (TAA screening) was performed on his tumor tissue to find out more about the genetic characteristics of his tumor tissue and surface markers, which revealed several tumor targets. KA then received targeted immunotherapeutic treatment. A PET scan beginning of 2016 showed no evidence of disease. Unfortunately, later that year the patient developed brain metastasis, which was successfully treated. A new diagnostic screening of the tumor tissue was performed, and the patient again received targeted treatment specifically directed against the targets found on the new tumor tissue. Fortunately, more than one year later now KA is still in remission, showing the durable tumor response to immunotherapy. His last scan was just performed last week, which confirmed no evidence of disease. We are so happy for you, KA!
My name is Paul Thomas-Peter, I’m 59 years old and from the UK. In early 2014 I was diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma of the skin on my right temple. It was removed and I was assured that it rarely spread. Later that year I found tiny lumps near my right ear, they were removed and it was confirmed that my cancer had metastasised.
I went on to have a partial neck dissection to remove all the lymph nodes and the parotid gland in the right side of my neck. I then had 35 days of radiotherapy combined with two doses of platinum based chemotherapy. My treatment ended in November 2014 and I was told there was a good chance of a cure.
In March 2015 the results of a CT scan showed that despite the treatment, my cancer had spread to the mediastinal lymph nodes in my chest. I was told it would continue spreading, it was terminal and no further treatment other than palliative care was available. I was told I had between 3 and 18 months to live.
I have never accepted that nothing could be done, I tried a number of natural therapies including changing my diet, details are in my blog: http://www..tryingtobeatcancer.org.uk This seemed to slow down the rate of spread but never stopped it.
My wife Helen and I continued looking at possible treatments and in late 2016 read about immunotherapy. We found that it had shown remarkable results in cases of my cancer and similar cancers. We discussed the possibility of receiving immunotherapy with our oncologist in York and had a second opinion at the Royal Marsden hospital in London. Essentially, although the drugs we wanted had been approved for use within the NHS they were not approved for my specific cancer, so I couldn’t be given them even if I paid for them myself.. The attitude of the NHS to immunotherapy was negative and it didn’t seem that the people we spoke to had much knowledge about it.
In January 2017 we read an article in The Sunday Times about people funding their treatment abroad and this article mentioned The Hallwang Clinic. We contacted them immediately, had my diagnosis and previous scan results sent to them and they were positive about my prospects. They insisted on testing my tissue samples before committing to a treatment plan which reassured me of their professionalism and knowledge. They phoned me at home after the tests were complete, explained what had been found and explained what treatment they felt I should receive, noting that it had an excellent chance of success.
It was a breath of fresh air to be spoken to as an adult and have things explained rather than being treated like a 6 year old who wouldn’t understand. I felt they were on my side, trying to cure me and would do their utmost to do so. I have to admit I was in tears after the phone call, I had hope again.
We attended the Hallwang Clinic in early March 2017. By this time I had survived 6 months longer than my NHS oncologist’s outside prognosis but I had gone downhill rapidly during January and February 2017. I believe that in early March 2017 I only had weeks to live, I was short of breath, had difficulty walking for any reasonable distances and had developed a terrible cough due to the tumours in my chest.
The doctors and staff at the Hallwang were incredible, they treated me like an adult and it was clear they had my best interest at heart. I had my treatment and the reasons for deciding on it explained in some detail which gave me confidence in it as I like to know what is happening. I was treated with different immunotherapy drugs, a personalised combination of treatments aimed at what my specific cancer was doing inside my body. Because of how ill I was, I was also put on a short course of antibiotics and also a low dose of chemotherapy in tablet form to prevent my condition worsening before the immunotherapy treatment began to work. I also had a PET CT scan so that we knew exactly where we stood and can measure the effects of the treatment.
This approach is something I would never have received from the NHS or any medical facility in the UK whether I paid for it or not. It is leading edge treatment, but well documented not experimental, it is personalised to me and my cancer.
The facilities at the Hallwang Clinic are excellent as well; the rooms are clean, spacious and well equipped, the food is excellent and the atmosphere is positive. The facilities allow for relatives to stay with you and there is 24 hour medical cover although I haven’t needed it thankfully.
The treatment began to work within 3 weeks, which is earlier than expected.. Tumours visible on and in my body began to disappear, some overnight. I had an examination by my NHS oncologist who was surprised by the results but critical of the treatment.
After 12 weeks of treatment at 3 weekly intervals a recent scan showed all my tumours had disappeared or reduced in size significantly. I am certain I am on the road to full remission. I have suffered very limited side effects and now have an excellent quality of life. The treatment is not cheap but we consider it money well spent, I would be dead now without this treatment, my recovery to date is like a miracle.
From here, we move forward into largely uncharted territory, this is new treatment so there is limited information about long term survival. However, I am confident that I am not now going to die in the near future and if I only get a year or two of good quality life it will be more than worth it to my wife and I.
We hope you had a good start into the new year and want to begin this year by sharing with you two testimonials.
As you can imagine, we do not only meet and treat new patients, but also meet their loved ones, families and friends. They also suffer and have to cope with many new situations, but are most important for our patients, as they give support, hope and comfort.
Thanks to all our patients’ families and friends who accompany our patients here at the Hallwang clinic!
Matt, a young gentleman with sarcoma, and his mother Jennifer travelled all the way from Australia to us, here you can read about their experience at the clinic.
Matt: “Hallwang clinic have not only shown how advanced their approach to treating cancer is, but how patient orientated their medical team are. After being diagnosed with a rare form of sarcoma in 2014 and then exhausting all available avenues in Australia I looked abroad, and came across this clinic. After making the journey to the clinic, the team made the process of getting treated for cancer as painless as it should be. Everything was laid out before me, and I was offered a targeted approach, something which had not been offered to me previously. After two visits to the clinic I saw and felt a noticeable difference with my tumors. It is safe to say that the targeted has worked in my case, and I’m very pleased with the results. I’m had some major concerns here in Australia, with some clinics I had visited, with their medical hygiene practices, some which left alot to be desired! Hallwang’s clinic approach to hygiene was superb and didn’t leave me questioning anything.”
Jennifer: “After the initial shock of being told my 24yo son had cancer, we were told it was a wait and see prognosis, and only surgery was required. This was definitely NOT the case. His diagnosis was then changed to extremely rare and highly aggressive, so 9 surgeries followed in an 11 month time frame, and numerous bouts of chemo and radiation. His health became much worse, and the cancer was now metastatic, with no known case histories in Australia and only a few world wide. We had exhausted all avenues here, and also with testing in the united states, all with zero results or options for a positive outcome. Hallwang and their staff were brilliant in their approach. They came up with a targeted therapy and treatment plan, which Matt and the Drs here are still following. From the time you walk in the door there, treatment starts happening. There are no “wait and see” approaches, which as we know do not work and allow for the spread of disease. We cannot thank the lovely nursing staff, kitchen staff, receptionists, plus the doctors for their attention to detail, care and looking outside the box approach.”
Months ago, we posted Elizabeth´s (on the right in the picture) cancer story. We were happy to see the progress she made after she had been sent home to die because of her progressive ovarian cancer, and arrived at our clinic in a miserable state but filled with hope and determination. Given her poor condition, initial treatment possibilities were limited, but we came up with a treatment strategy that allowed her to regain strength and reduce tumor load. Step by step, Elizabeth regained her ability to walk, sit and eat without any restriction. Now, few weeks after our first post on her improved and amazing recovery, we are happy to share with you the fantastic news: After intense combined immunotherapeutic treatment protocols, a tumor debulking surgery could be performed and Elizabeth is now in complete remission! We are so incredibly happy for her!