In 2015, ESPN reporter Holly Row was diagnosed with desmoplastic melanoma, a rare, fast-spreading form of skin cancer. After a first surgery, she enrolled in a UCLA clinical trial led by Dr. Antoni Ribas testing a new approach for advanced melanoma in which participants took the drug Keytruda (pembrolizumab) in combination with another immunotherapy drug or with a placebo.
Over a two-year period, Rowe flew to Los Angeles every 21 days for intravenous infusions that successfully led to her tumors shrinking significantly. Within three months of starting her treatment, the tumors in her lung had started to shrink, and by the end of therapy, the largest tumor had decreased in diameter from 21 millimeters to 3 millimeters.
Today, the veteran reporter continues to visit her team at the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center for regular checkups. Throughout her journey, she continued to offer sideline analysis and conduct interviews with coaches and athletes for ESPN. She also openly shared the ups and downs of her treatment, receiving support from many fans and inspiring others with cancer along the way.
Read her inspirational story in the latest issue of Cancer Today magazine.