When Glen Farkas was diagnosed with late-stage colorectal cancer in 2003, his chance of surviving five years was almost nil.
Trying to beat the odds, he chose to undergo radiation, surgery and painful five-hour-long infusions of a cocktail of chemotherapy drugs. The treatments held the cancer at bay for about a year, but the cancer returned with a vengeance, invading his liver, bone and lungs.
The second time around, a drug called Avastin was added to his chemotherapy regimen. Not widely available in 2003, Avastin required only 10 minutes to transfuse, was painless and didn’t cause side effects, Farkas said. As an added plus, he got his chemo in pill form, instead of intravenously.
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