Maryland's Health Matters - UMMS - Fall 2013 - (Page 1)

A Winning Participating in a clinical trial helped children’s entertainer get back to what she loves Trial E loise “Candy” Draksler is a self-described ball of energy, and uses much of that energy to make children happy. After teaching music for 20 years, Draksler now works full time as a children’s entertainer—a job that requires her to be in good shape. “I’m a healthy person, so it was odd when I was suddenly hit with nausea and dizziness,” she recalls. “I couldn’t sit upright without being sick.” Her doctor suspected vertigo, but the prescribed medicine didn’t alleviate her symptoms. After her symptoms worsened and her husband and friend insisted, Draksler was taken by ambulance to Upper Chesapeake Medical Center, where a CT scan revealed a mass on her cerebellum—the part of the brain responsible for movement and equilibrium. She immediately was transferred to University of Maryland Medical Center for further diagnosis and care. After an MRI and a biopsy, she was given a diagnosis of central nervous system (CNS) lymphoma. After children’s entertainer Candy Draksler participated in a clinical trial to treat her rare form of cancer, her tumor not only shrank but disappeared entirely. A RARE CONDITION With lymphoma, cancer cells develop and grow in the lymphatic system, usually causing enlarged lymph nodes. “The kind of lymphoma tumor that Candy had is rare,” says Aaron Rapoport, MD, the Gary Jobson Professor in Medical Oncology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and a hematologist/oncologist at the University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center. While lymphoma can develop in almost any organ, it rarely starts in the brain, spinal cord or meninges—but Draksler’s did, and the cancer had not spread to any other part of her body. “The multidisciplinary nature of our lymphoma treatment team allows us to IS A CLINICAL TRIAL RIGHT FOR YOU? For a list of current clinical trials at the University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center, visit

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Maryland's Health Matters - UMMS - Fall 2013

Maryland's Health Matters - UMMS - Fall 2013