Share This Post

Patient Stories

Voice of Kidney Cancer – John Coulthard

bilateral stage 4 RCC

Never give up!

I was diagnosed April 2016 with bilateral stage 4 RCC at 63 years old. Zero symptoms so it was a bit of a surprise. Two surgeries – a full nephrectomy and a partial – by then one tumor was basketball sized, at Ochsner in New Orleans. Luckily I was able to retire and get full disability and went onto oral medication (Cabometyx).

At this point I had not really realized that this is a manageable chronic disease and figured that I’d be dead in a year or two, so I traveled. Bought a small travel trailer and spent most of 2017 exploring the Rocky Mountains alone, hiking, fishing, camping, photographing and driving the back roads.

I was born and raised in England so this opportunity to explore the American West was a dream come true– in fact , after spending the winter back in South Louisiana I spent most of 2018 doing the same thing, mostly in Colorado, almost all in wilderness areas, dirt roads, boon-docking, National Forest camps, lots of elk, moose and bears.

Fortunately I had minimal side effects from the meds and they kept the tumors stable for two years. I did the blood tests at various places while traveling and flew home for scans every 3 months. I’ve moved on to an immunotherapy now and still doing well.

If possible I’ll be back on the road this year.

Thanks John for sharing your story.

Share This Post

Lost Password


Subscribe for updates!