Tragically, Janelle lost her courageous battle with mesothelioma in June 2013

Posted in January 2013 

We have been touched by asbestos in individual ways, yet we are joined together by a bond of community. As a testament to the strength of our global family, the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) is highlighting the courageous stories of our members with the “Share Your Story” feature on our website.

This week, we would like to honor the story of Janelle, who is a part of our ADAO family.

We encourage you to submit your personal stories by clicking here and following the simple instructions on the page. In sharing, comes healing. Remember, you are not alone.

Janelle’s Story

Name: Janelle

State: Indiana

Date of Diagnosis: 1-May-2007

Treatment: thoracentesis, chemotherapy, pleurodesis with chest tube drainage and talc, extrapleural pneumonectomy, 30 rounds of radiation, physical therapy,nerve blocks, decortication surgery with HIPEC, and medical acupuncture

1976 – 2013

How has asbestos changed your life?

 I was a 31-year-old wife with a 4-year-old son when I was diagnosed with Pleural Mesothelioma.  It started with trouble breathing, pain around my left rib and a constant cough. It was a matter of weeks and I went from being healthy to fighting for my life. I was told I would not survive Mesothelioma, that there was no cure.  I decided to have an EPP and I was so thankful it was a success!

Since surgery, it has been a long road to recovery.  I have come a long way, but I know I will never be the same again. I had a hard time getting off the pain medications and I suffered with severe depression. Some days, I could deal with the new me and other days, it was harder. I just try to continue to improve my life every day. In 2011, I was faced with the reality that the cancer had metastasized into my abdominal cavity. I had debulking surgery with HIPEC. The surgery went well. However, I then learned I was dealing with Restricted Lung disease in my only lung. I now use a BiPAP AVAPS to sleep at night. There has been a lot of hard days, but the ones in between are really great!

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