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  • Sarah Waara

A grateful patient and passionate donor

Beth Dowhen’s throat cancer diagnosis came as a surprise. She had never smoked, didn’t drink and tested negative for HPV.

“My diagnosis came out of the blue,” Beth said. “After I was diagnosed I was sent to see Dr. Offerman at Ascension Elmbrook. She told me it was going to be a battle, and it definitely was.”

Beth and her husband, Dennis

Shortly after being diagnosed, Beth underwent a biopsy on her lymph nodes to confirm her diagnosis and begin treatment. Beth’s treatment consisted of 33 sessions of daily radiation and seven sessions of chemotherapy at Ascension SE Wisconsin Hospital - Elmbrook Campus.

The treatments took a toll on her body. Beth experienced frequent nausea, pain and was tired. She expressed her feelings to a social worker at Ascension Elmbrook and was then given vouchers from Ascension Wisconsin Foundation to receive acupuncture services at low to no cost.

The acupuncture, Beth says, made a true difference in her care and recovery.

“I had never heard of acupuncture as a part of cancer treatment before,” Beth said. “It really helped me a lot. There were times when I wasn’t eating well and had an upset stomach from chemo and radiation and all of a sudden after acupuncture, I felt better.”

Today, nine years after her diagnosis, Beth is feeling like herself again. She’s in remission and no longer needs to have regular check ups. She also extends a philanthropic hand in support of Ascension Wisconsin Foundation, helping others that may be in a similar situation as she once was.

“My husband and I have contributed to other charities, and after talking about it, I said ‘you know what, I’m going to support the Foundation,’” Beth said. “I’m just so grateful for the care I received and for all of my providers. Everybody from the receptionist to my doctors were so friendly. I’m so grateful for them and I know God gave them the gifts that they are using to help other people like me.”


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