Paul's Story - Throat Cancer

Throat Cancer Patient Story
Paul Stevie Hendrix, Throat Cancer Patient, UCLA
3 min read

Testimonial: Throat Cancer Surgery

“Dr. St. John and Dr. Chhetri, both the nation’s top throat and neck surgeons removed the throat cancer and neck effected areas with absolute precision.” —Paul

I’ve maybe been taking advantage of great health. Living a bit of a health charmed life. After all, I had just completed a wilderness motorcycle adventure ride through the remote Grand Canyon. This was to launch my new streaming tv travel series I named “Riding Remote...And Alone”.

But when my neck suddenly swelled up to the size of a baseball I knew something bad was happening inside of me. Little did I know I was about to face anybody’s worst moment. I was in fact being told... I had throat cancer. Looking back now, I wouldn’t have wanted to experience that news any other way then with Dr. Maie St. John. Sitting in her office she delivered the diagnosis with equal parts calm, confidence and a dignity that reflected her deep sense of caring for me. I was first hit with shock. This was not supposed to be my life story. I wasn’t prepared for cancer. And I’m used to relying on myself traveling remote and alone in my wilderness.

Well, Dr. Maie St. John and her UCLA Head and Neck Department are like the perfect professional medical guides that safely lead their “remote and alone” patients through cancer treatments. Her cancer care team headed by RN/MSA Mensa Hasanovic masterfully led me through a treatment program that I can only describe as a cancer concierge service. I was literally chaperoned through a complex customized treatment schedule. The added supervision helped compensate for my shock from the cancer diagnosis and difficulty focusing on the details to come. A treatment strategy was mapped out making use of the most advanced medical procedures available. One that would maximize my healing, protect and preserve my quality of life.

Sparing the details, as each patience’s experiences are unique, my cancer required surgeries. Dr. St. John and Dr. Chhetri, both the nation’s top throat and neck surgeons removed the throat cancer and neck effected areas with absolute precision. Also, she helped to place me into a new and highly effective clinical drug trial that eradicated my cancer and preserved my quality of life.

My recovery after my treatments has been going well. And I have my life and future to look forward to again. As a commitment to my healing I’m doing physical therapy on my shoulder/ plexus muscle from nerve damage caused by the cancer. I also lost a substantial amount of weight and my physical therapy rehab is being assisted by Sean Haney, an active family member of St. John Bosco, last year’s national championship varsity football program and a devout young strength training lifter. I’m working hard to fully regain my health. My hope is to continue entertaining others with my motorcycle travel series... I know, I still can’t believe my recovery has gone so well.

I have a much greater understanding and empathy for those battling cancer and the difficult roads that lie ahead. And I hope to inspire others that there is an exciting life ahead after cancer.

And having the best caring Head and Neck UCLA medical team like Dr. Maie St. John and her staff is the future for guiding us as patients "riding remote and alone" in life through cancer.

Paul Stevie Hendrix, Throat Cancer Patient, UCLA