This weekend is the very last straight line of this 34th edition of Télévie in favor of cancer research. If we appeal to your generosity, better fight cancer and help the sick. Such is the case of Jonathan. At 16 he was battling a rare form of lymphoma: a cancer of the lymphatic system. Chemotherapy had no effect on him. It is therefore now being treated with what is known as targeted therapy.
Two and a half years ago. Jonathan learns he has anaplastic large cell lymphoma type B, a disease with a barbaric name for the then 14-year-old teenager. “I was in the hospital. I had started my first chemo. I was only told it was lymphoma but didn’t know it was cancer. It’s my best friend telling me it’s cancer. I say : ‘Motheris it cancer‘. And then I found out.“
I was completely exhausted in my bed
Unfortunately, multiple chemotherapy regimens are not enough. The disease repeated itself several times. Jonathan’s condition worsens and he falls into a coma for several days. Coming home is particularly complicated. “I was completely exhausted in my bed. Sometimes I had trouble eating. It’s a bit like I have a memory lapse. My brain started ‘out of’ it was that much difficult.“
A treatment in the form of capsules
At a dead end, the doctors offer him a new therapeutic weapon. Targeted Therapy. A treatment that the young man tolerates well and that enables him to lead a normal life. “It’s only 4 capsules in the morning and 4 capsules in the evening.‘ explains Jonathan. But if he is doing well, targeted therapy can cause side effects. Jonathan is regularly monitored at the Cliniques Universitaires de Saint-Luc. Crack drugs in targeted therapy aim to train cells to prevent malfunction. A treatment that Jonathan can endure for two years.
Jonathan’s mother: “Every day I thank the doctors who are looking. I think about it every day and tell myself if he had had this disease 5 years ago he wouldn’t be here anymore.“
With chemotherapy, we generally have excellent results in childhood cancer
The young man will have to interrupt his treatment next summer. The doctor BricardHead of the department of pediatric oncology in Saint-Luc, hopes that targeted therapy will be enough. that Jonathan lymphoma is rare, especially in children and adolescents. “These are therapies that we don’t often use in pediatrics. With chemotherapy, we generally have excellent results in childhood cancer.“ In addition, there is little knowledge of the toxicity of drugs.
Aside from check-ups, Jonathan goes on with his life as normal. He says he has complete faith in the medical profession.