JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Like most fathers, time with his family is the most important thing to Christopher Wong.
At the age of 43, Wong got the frightening news that his time might be running out.
"Ultimately my wife dragged me to the hospital on Memorial Day 2009 to determine it was lymphoma I had and it was stage four," Christopher Wong recalled.
It was a crushing diagnosis and completely out of the blue, but his first round of chemo therapy put it in remission.
Months later the cancer came back and he began a very intense chemo therapy treatment called ICE and had a stem cell transplant.
The treatments exhausted Wong and kept him away from his family for weeks at a time.
Facing an uncertain future it was precious time he wanted to spend with his family.
Dr. Augusto Villegas told Wong about a new treatment called Adcetris.
Wong's wife Patricia said, "I thought, let's give it a shot anything that would keep him out of that hospital."
Adcetris is a relatively new treatment that is specifically for Hodgkin's Lymphoma or Anaplastic Large-Cell Lymphoma. It is a manmade antibody that combined with a chemotherapy, drug that targets the lymphoma cells, sparing more healthy cells.
"I would say within 6 weeks he saw a response," said Dr. Villegas.
The response to the treatment wasn't the only bonus. The Adcetris treatments only took about 30 minutes, three times a week giving Wong more time to be around his wife and children. Also as a workout enthusiast, he was able to keep exercising throughout his treatment.
For Dr. Villegas it was a big win as well, "people usually associate oncologists with bad news all the time, but we do get a lot of satisfaction when we get to give good news."
"I thank God everyday to just be alive, it is a pretty trying experience, but I am thankful to be here and thankful for the doctors and my donor especially," Christopher Wong expressed.
Find out more at http://www.adcetris.com/
First Coast News