D&K - Lenny Intravesato, 53, kidney cancer, Norwood with Dr. Toni Choueiri, Director, Genitourinary Oncology Disease Center and the Lank Center for Genitourinary Oncology, Dana-Farber 8-21-18

Lenny has been fighting kidney cancer in one form or another since 2008. After doctors discovered a tumor in his kidney ten years ago, Lenny underwent several surgeries to remove tumor growths and eventually had his entire kidney removed. 

Unfortunately, Lenny's disease came back in 2013, and this time surgery was no longer an option. He now had an inoperable form of the disease that had spread to other parts of his body as well.

Lenny started on clinical trial of a targeted drug that helped to shrink his tumor dramatically. Lenny was also feeling good and experienced minimal side effects while on the trial.

When his disease returned in 2015, Lenny had additional treatment options at Dana-Farber. He started on a new form of therapy called immunotherapy. Immunotherapy harnesses the body's own immune system to recognize and destroy cancer cells, much the same way our immune system seeks out a virus or infection. Lenny's tumors have not grown since he has been on this new medication. 

While every day is challenge in some ways for Lenny, he maintains an upbeat and positive outlook. He calls Dr. Choueiri and his treatment team the best thing that ever happened to him.

Dr. Choueiri the lead investigator of multiple national and international phase one, two and three trials in GU cancers.

Dr. Choueiri is interested in developing novel therapies and biomarkers in GU malignancies, including kidney cancer. His research also focuses on epidemiology, diagnosis and treatment outcomes of GU cancers using large scale approaches such as meta-analyses from available published trials or national databases.

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

You guys just make my day. And also making my day is getting a chance to visit with new friends. Lenny. In trip aside did I get it right and it's perfect. And I'm about one for a seventh day on names Lanny that's great and doctor Tony she weary as witnesses welcome to see both of you. Many you rate kidney cancer patient I from Norwood you tell me your story how you first discovered that there was something going on here. I'm back in 2008. I was watching TV at my daughter watching a movie and I was really out of breath. So I went over to know what hospital they callous have a heart attack. They get a cat scan and my I was fine but they saw our shadow on my kidneys so who. That was at ten centimeter tumor on my left kidney which they've removed in 2008. And then 2010 it came back to my Treo planned. And then. 2013 he came back and that's when I met the actuary. Com. I was diagnosed with stage four. Inoperable incurable kidney cancer. What's it like when gold although it back for the first time if diagnosed what that feeling like compared to when you find out that it's come back. That's kind of shocked but I've been. In so many times it just. Kind of rule the punches you know just. How they're how they're feeling Echelon your families here this is my team this is a marvelous it is obviously very strong that there Austin how important they've been viewed it through all my god my daughter's Morgan Skyler. There around their awesome. They're like my Iraq extremely or very very big time family. So they're very encouraging. And supportive. Doctor tell me about the challenges of treating. Kidney cancers and and maybe more importantly because we were talking about hitting fifty million dollars clinical trials which you guys out there making the phone's ringer helping define. Perhaps a goatee a kidney cancer historically it is very hard to beat these easy when you. Spread when it metastasized initially the best chance that many had this whose sister city. But unfortunately anywhere between twenty to 50% of patients with cancer can come back especially this wasn't large tumor. And in many did and not only that it was one of those would be a form of kidney. Can't symmetrical conventional kidney cancer so we immediately when able to stop him on the clinical trial of the best two strategies so that. Hopefully will know in the future. Often we have patients enrolled. What strategy it work back there and actually he did get. A lot of benefit from that start to get some. Point that there are we put him on which was a targeted. The drug mule at that time now we look at it since 2000 sit in that allowed that that that's all. And you've got that done to cancer. He came back more recently and then we had immunotherapy as you know. New type of immunotherapy now that they immunotherapy we use 203040. Years ago. You type of immunotherapy emerging was the Farber having a lot to do is it a lot to do is it from that basic science perspective. And also it was to clinical throughout perspective and any benefited and still benefiting currently is on the clinical trial. Off aid to Iran in immunotherapy drug that is well played eight did as well that's another throughout the largest. The blood vessels that feed implement and as you can see this as an outpatient regiment. And he's doing well you wouldn't know this is a cancer patients looks younger like when they met him. And Angola and this is the theme that makes this happen I mean we take the front seat but this is the evil idiots have scored in a fifth then nurses. And dead research nurses and others and that means stated that make it happens so. I was stents as it was poverty. How do you feel right now. They feel great I feel great. I haven't had any side effects from the immune therapy just. Tired sometimes but other than that. No side effects whatsoever I would assume over the last ten years you've got some really good days and promised really bad days and there out you get through. I I actually feel pretty good idea if not then. No sickness. I just witnessed it hides some times. Other than that stick one day at a time and thank you for wearing the Red Sox shirt it a little bit apparently knows hawks I Sanford yeah. Lenny it's great to meet you doctor thank you very much every guy's. I would like to thank you so much on what to do on OK appreciate great to meet you guys.