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, HSCTWarriorsPodcast.org 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.

Revisit our conversation with Tamara and be reminded, you are enough (S4 replay)

Warrior: Tamara Netzel
AI: Multiple Sclerosis
HSCT: Dec. 2019, Monterrey Mexico
Superpower: truth

Have you ever been close to a resolution, only for it to slip through the cracks? How long has it taken for you to feel supported by your doctors? What would it look like if you pledged to help just one person get to HSCT?

The HSCT Warriors Podcast logo appears at the top of a woman pictured with her eyes closed, shouting into a megaphone that she is tightly gripping with both hands. A question asking "What if you help others to learn about HSCT?" is placed on her shoulder, above a paragraph to identify the interviewee as Tamara Netzel, who battled the autoimmune disease of multiple sclerosis by pursuing HSCT in December 2019 in Monterrey, Mexico, and revealed her superpower to be truth.

After a long road to diagnosis, the first disease modifying treatment that Tamara tried sent her liver into failure. The second DMT created side effects within the first two doses including bladder problems and damage to her ninth cranial nerve that caused extreme pain over the course of ten months as she fought for answers until she found cannabis to be her only relief. Finally after a third DMT proved ineffective, Tamara found research on HSCT and by connecting with other HSCT Veterans about their experience with Clinica Ruiz, and was ultimately convinced to travel abroad where she found better care than she had ever before received.

Join us in this deeper dive into so many aspects of life with MS and the rollercoaster ride of avoiding stress, treading feelings of isolation and taking calculated risks to avoid desperation in order to find quality care or sense of belonging in community.

Be sure to visit our website, HSCTWarriorsPodcast.com 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 your 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.

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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.

Resources:
McDonald Criteria
Wahl’s Diet
CruelConsequences.org
Dateline NBC
HSCT Warriors, Inc. 
IG blondewndrwmn

Listen again to how Craig tapped the power of patience through his journey with HSCT (S4 replay)

Warrior: Craig Witkowski
AI: Multiple Sclerosis
HSCT: September 2019 in Puebla
Superpower: Patience

Do you find it tough to maintain patience with yourself or doctors? How easily do you find a positive mental outlook? How tightly do you hold hope?

The HSCT Warriors podcast logo frames the top of the image that depicts a strong man waiting at the bottom of a tall staircase, pondering his next steps. The caption identifies the interviewee, Warrior Craig Witkowski, battling the autoimmune disease of multiple sclerosis, who received HSCT in September 2019 in Puebla, and named his superpower as patience.

After being on a first-line drug to hold off initial onset of his MS symptoms, Craig found benefit for a few years until he stopped the medication due to unwelcome side effects, which then caused issues for a couple of years. After changing careers, he spent time without any sign of the disease and then suddenly Craig was blind-sided by an experience while driving that left him nearly paralyzed. Without much of an explanation other than progression of his MS, he started on another disease-modifying-treatment that didn’t touch his disease progression and caused too many side-effects.

Craig researched more about stem cell treatments because his doctors could only offer vague uncertainties and although he found Dr. Burt’s clinical trial at Northwestern, after spending a year fighting insurance to pursue HSCT, Craig learned his disease had progressed, leaving him ineligible for the study criteria. Not willing to give up hope, Craig traveled to Texas for a presentation about Clinica Ruiz and was sold on the possibility that HSCT offered him.

Tune in and learn more about Craig’s unique challenges, fundraising efforts, power of patience, tremendous support of family and friends, and will to find his way to HSCT at Clinica Ruiz in Puebla, Mexico.

Be sure to visit our website, HSCTWarriorsPodcast.org 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 week 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.

Revisit meeting Ahna and be inspired to heal from the inside out (S3 replay)

Warrior: Ahna Crum
AI: Multiple Sclerosis
HSCT: April, 2016 in Moscow Russia
Superpower: Shapeshifting

aired 10.16.19

What motivates you to find curiosity in life? Have you ever been let down by a one-size-fits-all approach? How equipped are you to adapt?

After suffering significant relapses from an early age, in her late twenties Ahna found HSCT through her research trying to avoid moving into an assisted living facility. With great determination and a positive mindset, Ahna found Moscow to be a  welcoming, supportive place.

As someone who leaped into HSCT without any doubts, Ahna found the recovery rollercoaster to be quite the challenge. Tune in to find out more about the post-transplant complications that Ahna faced, how she was able to find her own solutions to heal her body, and how she found her passion to become a partner for HSCT warriors along their journeys.

Be sure to visit our website, HSCTWarriorsPodcast.org where you can find notes from today’s episode, submit ideas or feedback, or connect with the HSCT Warriors, Inc. nonprofit and “Talk to 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 reach out if you’re interested in sharing your story. We would definitely love to learn how the podcast has helped your journey with autoimmune disease… if you could take a moment to share your story, 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.

Resources: 
What the Heck Should I eat? by Mark Hyman
Psychobiotic Revolution: Mood, Food, and the New Science of the Gut-Brain Connection by Scott C. Anderson
MS Gym Podcast

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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.

Join Graciela along her journey to HSCT in her hometown of Monterrey (Ep. 76)

Warrior: Graciela
AI: Multiple Sclerosis
HSCT: January 2021
Superpower: value for life

How do you find peace of mind? Do you feel supported by family and doctors? How do you explore purpose in life?

After initially being told her symptoms were all in her head, Graciela received an apology from her neurologist along with her diagnosis. She was presented with options for treatment including disease modifying therapies and the extreme option of HSCT. When she further explored HSCT as an option, she learned that Clinica Ruiz offered the treatment in her hometown of Monterrey and she immediately connected with family to learn more.

Tune in to learn how Graciela kept a positive attitude and mindset to help her take on anger, fear of the unknown, thyroid issues, and covid. Be sure to visit our website, HSCTWarriorsPodcast.org 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.

Meet Heidi and learn how she took back control of her disease and pursued HSCT (Ep. 75)

Warrior: Heidi
AI: Relapsing Remitting MS
HSCT: July, 2019
Superpower: strength

Do you take the time to celebrate in life? How often do you recognize the little victories?

Although Heidi was diagnosed relatively soon after her first experiences with early symptoms of multiple sclerosis, the doctor she saw focused more on prescribing medications to treat symptoms she was experiencing and it seemed her MS diagnosis was set aside. After seeking other care that led to identifying additional health issues, she soon realized the tally of prescriptions totaled thirty different medications, including some that should not be taken together.

Tune in to learn more about how Heidi regained control of her health care and pursued HSCT in Monterrey, spent six months taking cautions to work through neutropenia, only to return to quarantine due to covid. Be sure to visit our website, HSCTWarriorsPodcast.org 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.

Continue learning the power of mindset along Zarko’s journey with HSCT in Moscow (Ep. 74 part 2)

Warrior: Zarko Bilal
AI: Relapsing Remitting MS
HSCT: April, 2021
Superpower: positive thinking

When did you start to figure out the important things in life? How do you overcome fear of the unknown? How do you keep your mentality in tact?

The continuation of this two-part episode reveals even more detail about Zarko’s experience with HSCT at the AA Maximov Hospital in Moscow, including how he managed the stress of delays due to covid, how he kept himself busy during isolation, the mindset he embraced, and insights gained during his journey. We are grateful to spend two episodes with Zarko learning about how he trained his mindset in preparation for HSCT and gained new perspectives to carry forward in life post-transplant.  

Be sure to visit our website, HSCTWarriorsPodcast.org 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.

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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.

Join Samantha in her journey from Melbourne to Moscow for HSCT despite covid (Ep. 72)

Warrior: Samantha Lakey
AI: Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis
HSCT: July 5, 2021
Superpower: eating

Are you someone who believes in fate? How do you recognize joy in yourself?

Only after Samantha endured a full-body seizure and spent weeks in the hospital did she finally receive a diagnosis for symptoms that doctors continued to brush aside, even though she had been struggling with fatigue, insomnia, numbness, nerve pain, and loss of balance, loss of vision and taste, tremors, and more for nearly two years. With the proper diagnosis, Samantha and her family were soon connected with individuals and resources that pointed her in the direction of HSCT, including a personal connection with someone who had been through HSCT seven years prior. 

Tune in to learn more about navigating the possibilities of HSCT from Australia, Samantha’s experience with traveling to Russia for HSCT, and how she is faring just three months post-HSCT. Be sure to visit our website, HSCTWarriorsPodcast.org 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.

Join Mike along his newfound journey to HSCT and be inspired by his humble fortitude (Ep. 71)

Warrior: Mike 
AI: Multiple Sclerosis
HSCT scheduled for January 2022
Superpower: fortitude

How do you share your diagnosis with others? How familiar are your loved ones with the demons you battle? How do you reconcile your experience with disease?

Having received a diagnosis at the young age of 22 after a bout of optic neuritis, Mike experienced reversal of his symptoms after a round of steroids and figured the disease would be manageable. Fast forward ten years and suddenly Mike realized the disease had actually been simmering just beneath the surface and after a severe hurricane, began more noticeably interrupting his daily functioning. 

After trying a couple of different disease modifying therapies, Mike was introduced to the idea of HSCT in social media advertisements for the Selma Blair documentary, and began exploring it as an option just two months ago. Tune in to learn more about the various ways that Mike has felt supported along his journey despite the questions and concerns that any HSCT Hopeful has also considered. 

Be sure to visit our website, HSCTWarriorsPodcast.org 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.

Gain insights from Jacob’s strategies to navigate the journey to HSCT (Ep. 69)

Warrior: Jacob Kinch
AI Multiple Sclerosis
HSCT: October, 2020
Superpower: new perspective

Where do you find glimmers of hope? Do you recognize the double-edged sword of multiple sclerosis?

Jacob shares so many relatable aspects of his experience with multiple sclerosis, including frustration with doctors, questionable approaches and decisions around treatment, and challenges with paying for expensive medications. Despite his best efforts with disease modifying therapies, the side effects that Jacob experienced made it dark and difficult to live with MS. Once he found HSCT and began researching, he found a glimmer of hope that was strengthened after he connected with someone at Clinica Ruiz to address his pages of questions.

Tune in and learn more about Jacob’s experience at Clinica Ruiz, navigating travel and processing other peoples’ judgments and skepticism, including doctors’ and neurologists’ opinions. Be sure to visit our website, HSCTWarriorsPodcast.com 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.