Eli’s Story

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Baptist Health Paducah: Eli’s Story

Randall Resser, MD, chronicles the story of Eli, describing how he and the family persevered to diagnose his Hodgkin’s lymphoma so he could begin treatment.

Eli’s Story Health Talks Transcript

Randall Resser, MD, Ear, Nose & Throat
Eli presented to me with enlarged lymph nodes, things that had not gone down with normal treatments with antibiotics and medicines.

Mary Beth, Tyler & Eli Presser, Golconda, Illinois
He tried some different medications initially that the pediatrician hadn’t tried, and we had some good results for a little bit, but then once he was off the medicine again, a few weeks later, the lymph nodes would come back, so finally he had surgery to go ahead and do a biopsy, remove some of the lymphatic tissue and do a biopsy on him.

Dr. Resser
The initial biopsies came back as being negative, but unfortunately those lymph nodes never really went away and they stayed large, and we had to decide maybe there was something else that we needed to look at. And so, we decided to go ahead and take his tonsils out thinking maybe it was an infection that wasn’t going away. And, at that time we said, well, let’s go ahead and re-biopsy one of these lymph nodes again since these nodes weren’t responding. We really wanted to make sure there wasn’t anything that we needed to worry about. Again, the pathology at least suggested that it was another benign lymph node and that there wasn’t really anything of worry with it. If it’s not something, you know, malignant, then what are we really dealing with? Is it some sort of strange inflammation that we need to be aware of? And so we both made the decision to go ahead and get a second opinion and send it to the Mayo Clinic to have them look at it and try to find out if there is something else with it. When we got the pathology back from the Mayo Clinic, however, they were able to see some things on it that would suggest he had the Hodgkin’s lymphoma. You know, when we finally realized what he had, it was stage 4 cancer, but one of the things to remember with Hodgkin’s lymphoma is that we really have a lot of good treatment options for him, and the cure rate for Hodgkin’s lymphoma is pretty good.

Mary Beth Presser
We do feel like Dr. Resser saved Eli’s life. I mean just the fact that he — never gave up on him. He really took care of us. He cared. It was amazing. He knew what he was doing. And when he didn’t know what he was doing, he didn’t give up. That’s the most important part.