Sarcoma real lives


At the age of 11, Luke Ryan was diagnosed with an osteogenic sarcoma growing from the back of his left knee. He remembers the treatment as ‘A lot, a long time and just beyond horrendous’. He had 12 months of chemotherapy with five different agents during three-to-five-day hospital stays with a week-and-a-half break between each one.

‘Three months in, I had a seven-hour limb salvage operation that left me with a full knee replacement, a slight leg extension and half a dead person’s femur, and without most of my quads. It was not fun.’

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Luke Ryan was 22 when he was diagnosed with sarcoma for the second time – in his right arm. He had just finished an arts honours degree at Melbourne University and was part way through a second degree in law.

‘I was diagnosed on a Saturday night and by Monday morning I had been wrenched out of my cosy existence and forced to move back to the family home in Perth. Suffice to say, I was less than enthused by this turn of events.’

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