Cancer Patient Stories | UnityPoint Health - Dubuque

UnityPoint Clinic - Family Medicine and Walk-In Care - Cascade

610 2nd Ave. NE
Cascade, Iowa 52033

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UnityPoint Clinic Urgent Care - East

1550 University Avenue
Dubuque, Iowa 52001

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UnityPoint Clinic Urgent Care - West

2255 JFK Road
Dubuque, Iowa 52002

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Patient Stories 

'We Had No Other Choice Than to Keep Fighting:' Wendt Center Patient Raises Awareness as Breast Cancer Survivor

Julie Richardson is a loving wife to James and mother to four daughters: Jenna, Jadyn, Avery and Alison. But, when her world was rocked by a stage 1 breast cancer diagnosis in late July 2019, Julie knew she had to put up a fight for those she loved most. Click here to read more of Julie's story.

'It's Like a Big Hug:' Cancer Patient Finds Family at the Wendt Center

After early stage breast cancer was discovered on a routine mammogram, Laura Stanner, a mother of two, loving wife and devoted educational professional, received care at the Wendt Regional Cancer Center. During her treatment journey, she found herself becoming part of the Wendt Center family. Click here to read more of Laura's story.

A Veteran's Victory

From 1976 to 1982, Alan Schlarmann voluntarily served as a mechanic in the United States Army. Once a soldier in the military, Alan became a different kind of soldier when he was diagnosed with head and neck cancer in late August 2019. Read more of Alan's story by clicking here.

'They take you in as part of their family:' Wendt Center Welcomes Patient With Open Arms

On October 23, 2018, Dawn Bryant heard the worst words possible - "You have breast cancer." From that point on, Dawn embarked on a cancer journey that first started in Cedar Rapids, before she came home to Dubuque and UnityPoint Health - Finley Hospital's Wendt Regional Cancer Center. Read more of Dawn's story by clicking here.

Tracy's Story: Milestones with Meaning

Genetic Counseling: The Gift of Knowing 

Carla Belken, Executive Director of Hospital Operations at UnityPoint Health – Finley Hospital, has worked in healthcare for more than 30 years in a variety of roles and capacities. She started as a hospital volunteer, before being hired as a CNA and working her way up to a hospital leadership position. Through everything she has experienced as a healthcare professional, Carla will never forget the personal experience that sparked her interest in becoming a nurse – her mother's battle with cancer. Click here to read more

Common Health Symptoms Turn Out to be Cancer

A personal story by Steve HirschShare your cancer story here.

My name is Steve Hirsch and my story begins in early 2017. At that time, I was experiencing hoarseness and wheezing. After seeing my family physician and cardiologist, I saw an ear, nose, throat specialist. Wanting to "cover all bases", Dr. Givens referred me to Dr. Schope, a lung specialist. Dr. Schope didn't hear any air moving in my left lung and was immediately concerned. From there, my whole world changed. Click here to read more

Cancer Care That Can Mend the Brokenness

A personal story by Sue Dolter. Share your cancer story here

Sue Dolter shares her experience receiving treatment for breast cancer at the Wendt Regional Cancer Center. Click here to read more.

Cancer Care with a Lasting Impact

A personal story by Ellen Bigelow. Share your cancer story here. 

From the first day that I walked thru the door into the Wendt Center, I felt like I was at home. I was met by Maggie at the front desk and she welcomed me like she had known me forever.

Thankful Patient 

A personal thank you from Gene Vigen. Share your cancer story here

I had 27 doses of radiation, Monday through Friday. My time went fast because of all the friendly and helpful people at Finley Hospital. I want to thank each and every one of them for making it so much easier. 

New Technology in the Right Hands

When 78-year-old Earlville resident Vincent Herman was diagnosed with stage 1 lung cancer, neither he nor his family thought much of the recommended treatment. So Vincent and wife, Betty, came to the Wendt Regional Cancer Center for a second opinion. Click here to read more.

On a difficult journey, Angie Gravel found support close to home.

"Aside from Finley making the process easy and comfortable, being so close to home was what made my experience all the better. I had 32 treatments, 32 days in a row, and only missed one day of work. There's nothing convenient about cancer especially when raising a four-year-old, but receiving treatment at Finley, I found out how much people will reach out and support you." Click here to read more.

Teamwork Unmasked in Finley Patient's Battle with Cancer

Paul Wiezorek's radiation mask rests on the table just a few short feet from him. It's Paul's spunk and generous nature - coupled with his determination and willingness to help others battling a similar journey - that dramatically fills the room as he lifts an electro-larynx to his right cheek, assisting him in sharing his story about his radiation mask and cancer journey. Click here to read more.

Proud to be a Breast Cancer Survivor

My name is Diane Carroll. I am a wife to my husband, Dan; a mother to my two children - Luke, age 18, and Lisa, age 14, both of whom attend Dubuque Senior High School. I am the daughter of Clete and Lavonne Kaiser; a sister to Deb Redmond and Steve Kaiser. I'm an aunt, godmother, sister-in-law, niece, friend and manager at Dubuque Internal Medicine. I am also proud to say I am a breast cancer survivor. Click here to read more. 

Amazing Team Working to Fight Cancer

Hello, my name is Karen Gonzalez. I am being honored here tonight because I am a breast cancer survivor. My cancer journey began, like so many others, with a routine mammogram. A suspicious area and a biopsy confirmed stage 2 ductal breast cancer. I underwent a lumpectomy and an axillary dissection due to positive lymph nodes. I was 47 and had no family history of breast cancer. I had my first of 8 chemotherapy treatments the week before my youngest son graduated from high school. After I finished chemotherapy, I spent the next six weeks getting radiation treatments at UnityPoint Health Finley Hospital Wendt Regional Cancer Center. During my treatment, I felt like I was part of an amazing team, all working to fight my cancer. Click here to read more.

Glad to be Fighting Cancer Battle Locally

September of 2014. I remember I was substitute teaching for a teacher who was being treated for breast cancer. Ironically, I noticed a large lump in my right breast. I didn't think it could be of concern, as I had just had a mammogram four months prior. Click here to read more. 

Cancer-Free Thanks to Care Close to Home

Once resigned to a double mastectomy, Tanya Kopp finds new hope close to home. They found the lump during a routine mammogram, and I was diagnosed with breast cancer last October 24. Since my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 31 and had a double mastectomy, I assumed I would have to take the same course of action. My doctors in Wisconsin, and later at Finley Wendt Regional Cancer Center, decided to prescribe less aggressive treatment. Click here to read more. 

Gary Dolphin is Cancer Free Because Hope was Within Reach

Gary is a vice president at U.S. Bank in and the voice of the University of Iowa Hawkeyes. When diagnosed with prostrate cancer, he conferred with oncologists and radiologists on where to receive treatment-the answer was right around the corner at the Finley Wendt Regional Cancer Center. Click here to read more. 

More Patient Stories

To read more patient stories on other services provided by Finley, click here.