‘It’s a miracle:’ Groundbreaking trial at Cleveland Clinic helps woman beat breast cancer

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CLEVELAND-- A new clinical trial is being described as nothing short of a miracle.

Cancer survivor Jennifer Eaves told FOX 8 her harrowing story of survival.

"I could feel a lump and I honestly knew, I mean, I didn't really need a doctor to tell me. I knew what it was. I mean, I knew it was cancer again,” Eaves said.

At just 36 years old, Eaves beat cancer not once, but twice, with the disease ravaging nearly her entire body. Her first diagnosis at the age of 32.

It was Stage 3 breast cancer and she had a baby boy at home.

"Right after he was born, I had a lump under my arm," she said. "It was kind of a fight for flight. It was kinda like, 'OK, I have a baby that is only 6 months old and I have a husband, and I need to fight this.'"

Eaves underwent a double mastectomy, chemo, radiation and a hysterectomy. On top of all of this, it was discovered she had the BRCA gene, a genetic precursor to having cancer.

Then even more bad news.

Three years later, a PET scan revealed the cancer returned in the form of tumors in her esophagus. The disease also spread to her bones.

"It kind of did feel like a death sentence, but I also kinda thought, 'Well, maybe because it wasn't in any organs, then maybe things would be OK.'"

Still, she refused to give up without a fight. Soon after the diagnoses, she learned of a clinical trial being held at the Cleveland Clinic.

Turns out, she was the perfect candidate.

Dr. Jame Abraham is the director of the breast oncology program at Cleveland Clinic’s Taussig Cancer Center where the trial was conducted. It features a new drug taken in pill form.

"So the exciting news, when someone has the BRCA gene, we have new treatment which can target the specific gene," Dr. Abraham said. "It's not chemotherapy. She's not losing her hair, no nausea, vomiting. So it doesn't have the conventional side effects of chemo."

After just one year in the trial, Eaves’ cancer is now in remission.

"It is a miracle. It's without a doubt a miracle. And I definitely feel like it's a blessing, more time with my son, more time with my husband," she said.

Eaves, who lives in Virginia, will continue taking this so-called miracle drug, possibly for the rest of her life. Still in clinical trials, doctors are uncertain when it will be made available to the general public.

October is breast cancer awareness month.

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