Fighting For | September 17, 2020
Sam Grewe ’21 was 13 when he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a rare type of bone cancer that eventually required his right leg to be amputated. While his peers muddled through middle school, he bounced between doctor’s appointments, chemotherapy, surgeries and therapy. But good doctors, Grewe insists, facilitated dramatic results in his recovery.
“I was a patient for two years of my life and I know what a good doctor looks like, and I know what a bad doctor looks like,” he says, noting what a positive impact his oncologist had on his recovery. “She didn’t treat me like a series of statistics and numbers and lab counts. She sat down and told us what her plan was in English terms we could understand at the time ... including what was possible to happen, good or bad. I think the degree of communication was the biggest thing because it gave us comfort knowing that there was no information being withheld.”
That level of communication gave him agency in his decisions and his recovery, he said, even as a young teen. It motivated him to work hard. Then his doctor went on leave and he was temporarily assigned to someone new. Immediately, he saw a downshift in his progress.
“Then I realized the effect that the patient-doctor relationship can have on outcome,” he says.
Read more here.