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LIVING with Metastatic Breast Cancer

Kimberly Hathorn’s cancer experience has endured for nine years, but she continues to persevere and live life on her own terms.

Originally diagnosed and treated for breast cancer in 2007, Kimberly was in remission until 2011. At that time, her cancer began metastasizing to various parts of her body, including her brain.

“It’s always scary when you find out you have cancer, but I turn to God because he is the ultimate healer,” said Kimberly. “I just take life day by day and continue doing things I enjoy such as reading, stamp collecting and spending time with my family and dog, Rocco.”

Kimberly says that looking for the good in everyday life also keeps her spirits up.

“There are so many good people in the world, and while you tend to hear about negative things happening, there are always more people like my doctors and other caregivers who are making a positive difference.”

Like Kimberly, many people are living many years after a metastatic brain cancer diagnosis, thanks to advances in medicine. Kimberly was excited when she learned that her latest brain tumor could be treated with a new device, the Leksell Gamma Knife® Icon™ stereotactic radiosurgery system, which can enhance life for patients with malignant and nonmalignant brain tumors.

“I’m very hopeful that the Icon treatment will work,” said Kimberly. “The machine was so quiet; it was over within 30 minutes and the treatment team played music overhead to help pass the time.”

“The pace at which new technologies and clinical trials are being developed is happening rapidly,” said Dr. Renee Levine, radiation oncologist. “For instance, with the Icon we can effectively eliminate brain many types of brain tumors without surgery and keep healthy tissue unharmed; it’s a major factor in keeping patients living as normal a life as possible.”

The Gamma Knife Icon is now available at Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center, the only facility in the Gulf South with this revolutionary new technology.

For more information on Gamma Knife Icon, visit www.conquerdifferently.org.