Fred and Carolyn McAllister have both been diagnosed with cancer and had their share of battles to reach to remission together. With the help of Western Missouri Medical Center’s (WMMC) Infusion Center and Saint Luke’s Cancer Center on WMMC’s campus, returning to normal life is a reality for them.
Fred rang WMMC’s remission bell in May 2018 to celebrate being in remission from Mulitple Myloma Cancer. This bell indicates that a patient has completed their cancer treatment such as chemotherapy and has entered remission. His niece Connie, WMMC’s OB Clinical Nurse Coordinator, celebrated this victory with him and her Aunt Carolyn.
Fred’s battle began when he was diagnosed in April 2014 with Stage Three Multiple Myeloma Cancer, a cancer that destroys the plasma in bone marrow. This cancer is not easy to diagnose, and was only caught after Fred’s kidney shut down. Fred was lucky that it was caught early enough that he was able to receive treatment at University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences as a low risk patient.
After receiving a stem cell transplant along with several other procedures at the University of Arkansas, he began a three-year maintenance plan with the WMMC Infusion Center and Saint Luke’s Cancer Center under the care of Dr. Smeltzer.
Fred’s three-year plan began at the WMMC Infusion Center. The plan involved a weekly chemo shot and monthly chemo pills. Additionally, he had blood drawn every week before his chemotherapy. All of this was completed at the Infusion Center – and he couldn’t say enough great things!
“The nurses at the infusion lab are just great. Kim, Donna, Desiree, Rachel – they are all amazing. You can’t beat the treatment here,” Fred happily doted on his favorite nurses.
The plan ended May 2018 and Fred is now in complete remission! He hopes to return to gardening and playing golf as soon as possible, but he is currently helping his wife Carolyn recover from her cancer journey.
Carolyn had surgery in May 2018 for Stage 1 Invasive Intraductal Carcinoma Breast Cancer and is on the road to recovery. After surgery and radiation she is now on a long-term medication plan, seeing Dr. Smeltzer from Saint Luke’s Cancer Center once every three months.
“We have lots of friends and family that come here too. We have a cousin here who everyone had pretty much given up on except Dr. Smeltzer… Cancer doesn’t exclude any family. It’s everywhere.” Carolyn states, after pointing out some of their friends sitting in the waiting room next to them. “It feels like home when we come back.”
Having the Infusion Center easily accessible to receive treatments has helped both Fred and Carolyn get treatment closer to their home in Clinton, MO. While they were willing to do what it took to reach remission, receiving treatments at WMMC has made it easier on both of them through their journeys.
Fred and Carolyn’s Future
Carolyn plans on continuing to garden her flower beds while Fred looks forward to going back to golfing soon – and they both are looking forward to attending church.
Carolyn and Fred, thank you for sharing your journey together and empowering others through your story. We are happy to be a part of your journey and are proud to provide you with quality care closer to home!
Do you have a story about your experience at WMMC that you want to share with us? We want to hear it! Call (660) 262-7472, or email firstname.lastname@example.org to share your experience today!
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About Western Missouri Medical Center
Western Missouri Medical Center (WMMC) is a fully-accredited acute care county medical center located in Warrensburg, MO. WMMC prides itself in emergency care, obstetrics, orthopedic and general surgery, family healthcare, internal medicine, outpatient clinics, ambulatory care, rehabilitation services and more. Inpatient services include medical, surgical, intensive, obstetrical, orthopedic, pediatric and skilled nursing care, as well as a wide range of therapeutic and diagnostic outpatient services. This institution is an equal opportunity provider and employer. Learn more at WMMC.com.