Baltimore - With each swimmer's stroke, there's a chance to save a life.
The Johns Hopkins Sydney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center is a well-established leader in cancer research, treatment and patient care. That’s where the money raised with "Swim Across America Baltimore" will go. Doctor Luis Diaz is an oncologist and director of the lab. These funds will develop ongoing studies as well support new opportunities to positively impact patient's lives.
“Whether it's from a new discovery that aids in diagnosis, a new therapy that eventually comes out of this or just helping a patient through the cancer care process and enabling them to get the best possible care to achieve the best possible clinical outcome,” explained Dr. Diaz.
One recent discovery to be furthered at the Kimmel Cancer Center is a basic blood test to detect cancer growth.
“It’s a test that takes the characteristics of your tumor, uses them like a fingerprint to track the tumor anywhere in your body and to track it whether the tumor is there or not.”
With cancer being the second deadliest killer in the country, Dr. Diaz and his staff are battling long odds to defeat the diseases.
But Ivellisse Page has beaten the odds.
“I was diagnosed in September of ‘08 with colon cancer. And it was stage two at the time,” explained Ivellisse.
Within months her cancer had reached stage four. But today, Ivellisse is cancer free.
“I feel like I’ve been given this gift of a new life. And not everyone's given that chance.”
Now she is giving back and volunteering to be part of the Center's blood test study.
And helping, in a big way, will be the more than 600 swimmers of "Swim Across America Baltimore".
“This is incredibly motivational, not just for me but for everyone in our lab, and most importantly, the patients. They really appreciate this and they can feel that they're not alone,” said Dr. Diaz.
“If our community can rally together, and raise funds together, and do this together, so that research can continue on here at the Kimmel Cancer Center, what an amazing opportunity that is for us all,” said Ivellisse.
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As Baltimore gears up for the approaching wintry mix of snow, icy conditions, heavy rain and potential flooding today and Monday, December 8th and 9th, the Maryland Transit Administration’s goal, as always during weather events, is to keep service operating in a safe manner for customers and employees.
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