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go on — and the staff worked with him to accommodate his needs. He continued working as a sales manager while in the hospital, holding conference calls from his room. He also wanted to keep physically active. At first, Phil tried walking briskly through the hospital corridors. But he worried he might accidentally bump into another patient, possibly hurting someone. He talked with his nurses, and they arranged for Phil to get access to the hospital’s physical therapy floor, which had treadmills. “It meant so much for them to go out of their way and make that extra effort,” Phil says. Dr. Trendle praised Phil’s positive attitude and his commitment to keeping active during his treatment. “You want to do everything you can to maximize your sense of well-being,” he says. “Exercise is a way of doing that.” While Phil and his family await his next round of scans, which will show how much the cancer is retreating, Dr. Trendle says that Phil’s improving symptoms and

recent blood tests show signs that the chemotherapy is working. Seeing this progress is rewarding to Dr. Trendle, who says he enjoys doing whatever he can to improve a cancer patient’s life. “It’s all about trying to help people live as long and as well as they possibly can with the disease and the challenges that they face,” Dr. Trendle says. “I wish everyone could be cured. But even when a cure is not possible, you want to do what you can to control their disease, control their symptoms and maximize quality of life.” As Phil continues his treatment, he is determined to move forward with an optimistic outlook and an upbeat demeanor. He feels fortunate to have his family, his community and his team of caregivers fighting at his side. “I don’t think that you can ever know that you’re going to get cancer,” he says. “You have to have faith in God, yourself, family, friends as well as the people who are taking care of you. You will have your up days and your down days, but you have to surround yourself with strong supportive people. You really have to be positive.”

Top: Phil Griggs working from his hospital room; Middle: Exercising on the physical therapy treadmill; Bottom: Griggs with nurse Ashley Johnston




Inside Columbia Magazine November Issue  
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