Listen again to Lydia’s insightful journey to HSCT and be inspired by her inner strength (S4 replay)

Warrior: Lydia Rosenbaum
AI: Crohn’s Disease
HSCT: August 2002 at Northwestern Memorial, Chicago
Superpower: Empathy and belief in self

After spending time in palliative care planning to die, how do you find the right time to celebrate success with surviving? How do you find compassion for people who have never walked in your shoes? How often do you push your limits?

The HSCT Warriors logo introduces a woman glancing down over her left shoulder, holding her right arm upward in protest and her right palm is is reaching out, fingers outstretched. Her palm is covered by a pink square of paper marked with a thin black x and the question, "How often do you push your limits?" is posed above the introduction of the interviewee, Lydia Rosenbaum. She received HSCT in August of 2002 to halt Crohn's Disease in Chicago and declared her superpower as empathy.

Despite suffering extreme complications with Crohn’s disease that kept her in and out of the hospital through multiple surgeries and dangerous fevers, Lydia woke up after surgery one day and was suddenly told “you cannot eat”. Before she even turned 30, on medical disability and living in the hospital more than out, Lydia found herself striving to survive, advocating for consistency and questioning the ethics of efforts to keep her alive.

Having prepared to face death from her aggressive form of Crohn’s, Lydia was very surprised to find herself feeling so isolated after HSCT after she realized she instead could prepare to live. Join us and learn more from Lydia about her experience and the path that led her to the Phase II Clinical Trial as one of the very first patients treated for Crohn’s Disease by Dr. Burt at Northwestern.

Be sure to visit our website, where you can find notes from today’s episode, submit ideas or feedback, or connect with HSCT Warriors, Inc. and schedule time to “Talk with a Warrior”, find the latest research and resources, or explore the world map. Special thanks to musical genius Billy Alletzhauser for sharing his superpowers to produce the soundtrack, and engineer the audio to make this podcast possible. You can find us both when you subscribe on SoundCloud, iTunes or wherever you find podcasts.

It has been great to connect with Warriors worldwide, so please reach out if you’re interested in sharing your story. We would love to learn how the podcast has helped your journey with autoimmune disease so if you could take a moment, leave us a comment on instagram or share feedback on our website. We hope you’ll tune in next Wednesday for another episode, highlighting another HSCT Warrior. Until then, be a snowflake and embrace your superpowers. Be kind. Be well.

Jen Stansbury Koenig and the producers disclaim medical influence and responsibility for any possible adverse effects from the use of information contained herein. If you think you have a medical problem, please contact a licensed physician immediately.


  1. Do you guys happen to know Dr Balabanov’s email address??

    Also, I really need to do my podcast and keep forgetting to tell Jen! Keep up the fantastic work! I love these! Brandi Johns HSCT 7/28/15

    On Wed, Jan 19, 2022 at 1:00 AM HSCT Warriors Podcast wrote:

    > jdskoenig posted: ” Warrior: Lydia RosenbaumAI: Crohn’s DiseaseHSCT: > August 2002 at Northwestern Memorial, ChicagoSuperpower: Empathy and belief > in self After spending time in palliative care planning to die, how do you > find the right time to celebrate success with survi” >

    Liked by 1 person

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