Receiving a diagnosis of any kind has implications not just for the person on the receiving end, but also for their family, friends and the people closest to them. As part of our commitment to patients and their care teams, this National Family Caregivers Month, we shine a light on this essential role and its many nuances.
When Steve began experiencing flu-like symptoms, he and his wife Crystal didn’t think his condition was serious. His primary care physician and urgent care doctors thought he might have mononucleosis or tonsillitis, but Steve and Crystal knew these theories were unlikely since Steve had his tonsils removed as a child. When he realized antibiotics weren’t improving his symptoms, Steve decided to visit the emergency room. Crystal was at an after-school activity when she received a call from Steve to tell her he had leukemia.
When Meaghan was pregnant with her second child, she found herself struggling to get out of bed. Many people assumed she was experiencing depression because she was also coping with the recent death of her brother. What was really going on with her brain wouldn’t be properly diagnosed for another four years.
When Norman was diagnosed with an aggressive form of acute myeloid leukemia (AML), doctors told him the odds were against him. When it came time for a bone marrow transplant, no donors could be found. Then a woman in Germany, who signed up for the registry two days prior, emerged as a match.
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