Michelle Allen, of Galena, Illinois, found out she had cancer in July 2020. Not only was she diagnosed with small cell carcinoma of the lung, the cancer had also metastasized to the brain.
With the type of cancer she was diagnosed with, Michelle required both radiation and chemotherapy treatments, all of which were done at the Integrated Cancer Center - a partnership between Dubuque's cancer experts - Grand River Medical Group's oncology clinic and the Wendt Regional Cancer Center.
The Integrated Cancer Center brings radiation and medical oncology services together in one location, which provides patients with a comprehensive cancer treatment center.
The first step in Michelle's treatment journey was radiation treatments every day. In total, Michelle had 10 treatments.
"The radiation team was great and handled everything really smoothly," Michelle said. "I felt comfortable in their care."
Once she finished her radiation treatments, it was time to undergo chemotherapy treatments several times a week with Grand River's oncology clinic.
During her treatments, Michelle noticed the coordination of care between the Wendt Center and Grand River's oncology clinic.
"We went ahead and got radiation done first, which was every day," Michelle said. "Once I was done with that, I went to chemo, which wasn't every day. The way they set it up was perfect. I was done with radiation all at once and then was able to finish chemo."
Throughout her experience, Michelle enjoyed the option to have all of her cancer treatments under one roof and in the same location.
"It was much easier," Michelle said. "It was easier to know where I was going and on what days. Sometimes, we were in both clinics on the same day. It really just made my treatments a lot more convenient."
Reflecting back on her journey with both clinics, Michelle was thankful for the high quality care and expertise provided to her during treatments.
It put her at ease and made treatments more enjoyable.
"It's a great facility and a great team," Michelle said. "They took very good care of me, and I'm almost completely recovered. I feel that was the teams' doing. I do have a lot of confidence in the doctors and the staff. The way we were treated was kind of fun - we laughed a lot."