Thanks to CNN for sharing my story

Three years ago tomorrow, I learned I wasn’t going to die — at least not before Christmas.

September 20, 2004 was the day I learned I didn’t have cancer afterall — despite 10 weeks of insistence on the part of a handful of doctors and two pathology labs that I had a strange and aggressive lymphoma and would die within months if I didn’t undergo chemo.

The significance of September 20 was that it was the day I received conclusive results from the National Institutes of Health — no cancer, no death sentence, we’ve-just-handed-you-back-your-life.

And in those three years, I’ve changed my life and my career to help others help themselves find their best medical outcomes. That’s why I’m Every Patient’s Advocate.

You can read my entire story here. Or, for the sake of time (because I’m soooo long winded in my version!), you can read Elizabeth Cohen’s and Jennifer Pifer’s version, published today in the Empowered Patient column on the CNN website.

I’ve been a fan of Ms. Cohen’s column since its inception just a few months ago. Why? Because it’s not just a column with a story. It’s a column that compels with a story, and follows with real tools. This column outlines some of the ways you can determine whether you’ve been misdiagnosed.

The Empowered Patient column is a great fit with my blamers and fixers concept. Ms. Cohen is a fixer, and because her audience is so widespread, many will find help among her words.

I’ve taken advantage of the link from CNN to my website to provide additional information about determining misdiagnosis. There will be a second Empowered Patient column next week that helps readers learn what steps to take to confirm a misdiagnosis.

If you’d like updates, or alerts to the second column, please sign up on my email notification list, and I’ll keep you in the loop.

Thanks Elizabeth and Jennifer. You can’t imagine how validating it is to see my work appear on such a grand platform.

Want more tools and commentary for sharp patients?
Sign up for Every Patient’s Advocate once-a-week or so email tipsOr link here to empower yourself at

1 thought on “Thanks to CNN for sharing my story”

  1. In early July, 2004 my wife was diagnosed with TB after a spot showed up on her lung x-ray. She immediaely began taking a long list of antibiotics. A needle biopsy revealed nothing, but as time went on I became less confident in her doctor. In September I took her to Duke, and the next day she had lung surgery. The diagnosis was non-small cell lung cancer. I’ll always worry that those couple of months may have made a difference. I lost her in May 2006. Anyone facing the possiblily of a serious illess should always get a second opinion by an expert, and it should be done early.

Comments are closed.

Trisha Torrey
Scroll to Top