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Miracle as woman is cured of terminal stage four lung cancer

Miracle as woman is cured of terminal stage four lung cancer

Tannaz Ameli says life has a 'different meaning' now

A 64-year-old woman has said life has 'different meaning' after she was successfully cured of terminal lung cancer thanks to a new technique.

Tannaz Ameli, from Minnesota, US, first sought medical help after developing a persistent cough which didn't go away for months.

Doctors performed an X-ray and initially diagnosed her with pneumonia, but in January 2022 she was told she had stage four lung cancer.

Ameli, a retired nurse, underwent chemotherapy, but it wasn't enough to cure her illness, which was terminal.

“I had no hope. I was ready for my life to end,” she said.

Following her diagnosis, Ameli's husband scheduled an appointment with a surgeon at Northwestern Medicine after seeing a video about a double lung transplant procedure.

Ameli was told she was a candidate, and underwent a double lung transplant of her own in July 2022. In order to meet the criteria for the transplant, the cancer must be contained within the lungs and the patient must have tried all other treatment options.

The surgery is not without risk, but Ameli underwent the procedure, and for only the second-ever time, it was successful.

The patient was told she was cancer free, to which she thought: "Am I dreaming, sitting here? Can it happen?"

But it did happen. Ameli hasn't had any complications from the procedure, and every morning she 'just can't believe' it.

“Life has a different meaning now," she said.

Ameli couldn't believe it when she learned she was cancer free.
Fox 32 Chicago

Single lung transplants have been performed successfully since the 1980s, but transplants for lung cancer aren't common, and it wasn't until 2021 that the team at Northwestern Medicine first performed a double lung transplant on another terminal cancer patient, Albert Khoury.

Khoury had been in the intensive care unit as a result of his illness, and oncologist Dr. Young Chae said a double lung transplant may be his only hope.

The procedure proved successful, and now Ameli has joined Khoury in being cancer free.

"I hope that all cancer patients can be as lucky as me and Albert were," Ameli said. "Every day we wake up and we're thankful for it."

The team at Northwestern Medicine is planning to launch a new program for people with lung disease in its final stages.

The clinical program will be the first of its kind and plans to follow the outcomes of its first 75 patients who receive double lung transplants for lung cancer.

Researchers hope to use the data from the study to follow overall survival, disease-free survival and transplant rejection rates.

Featured Image Credit: Northwestern Medicine

Topics: Health, News