Vaughan Herriott was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2016 following a very difficult six months where he was rocked by a spate of three family tragedies. Married with two children in their 20s, the former self-employed builder had to change his career after his cancer diagnosis. He now makes replica puppets, something which had previously been a hobby.
Vaughan initially found a lump on his neck in September 2016 and following a biopsy, he received the news that he had non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Vaughan was told that the cancer was non-aggressive, despite that, after receiving 4 different types of treatment, each time it would soon return.
Early in 2022, Vaughan received the devastating news that his cancer has spread to his kidneys and spine. He had urgent radiotherapy treatment to prevent him from being paralysed.
At this stage he had run out of treatment options apart from one, which was the opportunity to participate in a research study taking place at the Royal Cornwall Hospital. He said: ‘‘This was my last hope, if I didn’t receive the study drug I would have been dead within 6 months’’.
Vaughan joined the study in April 2022 and is six months into his treatment. After initially attending the hospital for weekly treatments, he now has appointments every other week.
The treatment is an antibody therapy which is delivered by infusion, this means it is delivered through a small tube directly into the vein. The study gives doses which are increased over time to help the patient tolerate the treatment.
Vaughan is now free of any tumours which is something he had never achieved with any other treatment.
He is very grateful to all the staff who have looked after him throughout his journey but is particularly close to the research team staff ‘‘Denise and Claire from the Haematology research team look after me and help me with any problems. They are like family to me’’ he said.
Vaughan also feels that a positive mindset and practicing meditation have helped his recovery.