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Patient Stories

Voice of Kidney Cancer – Evelyn Gebele-Baker

Rob Baker

In January 2017, my husband Rob went to our doctor thinking he had a hernia. She told him that he had indeed a hernia but also a huge growth on his kidney and did a blood test. She called us at 11.30 pm to tell him to go to the hospital right away. She could not understand how he was walking, his hemoglobin was so low. 

There we found out he had a 21 cm tumour on his kidney. He was referred to an amazing surgeon and the surgery took place in March 2017. He had numerous blood transfusions before. After surgery he recovered well and was great for a full year. 

In January 2018 he started seeing pinwheels but did not think anything of it as we just had scans, no MRI for the brain, but clear scans. A few weeks later he woke up with a headache so bad that he was in tears and not being able to see. I took him to the hospital and they did the MRI. He had a grapefruit size tumour in his right occipital lobe. They performed a craniotomy and also did gamma knife. 

He recovered but lost his left peripheral field. Over the next 12 months he had numerous gamma knife treatments for brain mets. Then exactly to the 12 months mark he had regrowth in the tumour bed in his brain. Craniotomy again with 5 rounds of targeted radiation. Then a seizure and a fractured shoulder revealed that he had a tumour in his shoulder. Radiation again to his shoulder. Then he lost the ability to bear weight on his left leg due to a tumour on iliac. They did radiation and added treatment with opdivo/yervoy. 

He is doing well on treatment however his cancer is also in his lungs and adrenal gland and liver. He has side effects from treatment and brain necrosis and life is been hard for the past four years. We lost everything… our business, our savings and now have to sell our family home. Everything that we worked for is falling apart. 

But Rob is a fighter and his strength amazes me and he is not ready to give up. He has children he wants to see grow up!

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