Twenty-six-year-old English Major, Amberley Kowalski has always been healthy and fit. So when she came down with several seemingly unrelated illnesses—she had lost over 10% of her body weight, had noticeably enlarged lymph nodes and veins in her neck, fatigue, persistent cough, and had trouble breathing—she actually started to question if she had cancer.
She had been reassured by those around her that she surely did not have anything serious. But Amberley was concerned. And finally, right before a new school year was to begin, her doctor pursued his suspicions with a chest x-ray and a subsequent CT scan. The test results came back with abnormalities that were alarming. The tests showed large masses in her chest and around her lungs. A few weeks before her birthday, Amberley was diagnosed with Stage 3B Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.
Amberley was both shocked and relieved to finally know what she was dealing with. She and her family met Dr. Memon the first night she was admitted to the hospital. He reassured her and told her the truth about her condition. Amberley said, “Dr. Memon’s humor, professionalism, and excellent bedside manner put us immediately at ease. He somehow had a way of making lymphoma sound like something I had the power to take on. My mom remarked later that she just trusted him right away and knew that he would be able to take care of me and I felt the exact same.”
She began her treatment at Kishwaukee Cancer Care Center. Amberley watched The Cancer Center being built and finished while she visited the old center for her treatments. “I had seen the building going up and looked up pictures online and knew I wanted to be treated there,” Amberley said. She ended up having her last two chemo treatments at the new center, and she said, “Cancer treatment doesn’t just end when chemotherapy does and I appreciate knowing that I have everything I need for my aftercare close to home. I like that I can have all my scans, appointments, and bloodwork available to me all in one convenient facility.”
Only half way through Amberley’s treatment, she was very happy when Dr. Memon told her that the cancer was responding to the treatment. Amberley is feeling much better and is looking forward to eventually getting back to her job that she took a leave of absence from. Miraculously, Amberley has continued going to school through her treatment.
With her positive attitude and outlook, Amberley is healing fast. She said, “As weird as it sounds, I loved going to the Kishwaukee Cancer Center and now The Cancer Center! I actually get excited about my appointments (even when I’m going in for chemo!) and I love talking to the nurses and Dr. Memon, who always asks me how his ‘favorite patient’ is doing and makes me feel so at ease. My mom even had a shirt printed up that said ‘I Love Dr. Memon’ which I wore to my first appointment after my initial chemo!