Health & Medicine
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Episode 115
Featuring Brian Koffman
Demetri Kofinas speaks with Dr. Brian Koffman, who after battling cancer for more than eleven years underwent an experimental immunotherapy that has now left him without a single trace of malignancy in his entire body. This conversation explores his life-changing journey from doctor, to patient, to advocate.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Brian Koffman, a doctor turned CLL patient, whose patient education and advocacy efforts have given hope and encouragement to CLL cancer patients everywhere.

Brian Koffman is extraordinary, in many ways. He’s extraordinary in the medical sense because, after twelve years of battling blood cancer, doctors can no longer find a single trace of malignancy in his entire body. He is 100% cancer-free going on almost two years, thanks to an experimental therapy that wiped out his CLL cancer in less than a month. But there’s another way in which Dr. Koffman is extraordinary, and this has to do with how he has handled his diagnosis. Brian Koffman's willingness to share his experience undergoing cutting edge treatments, as well as his decision to leave his medical practice behind and dedicate his life entirely to being a CLL advocate have both had an enormously positive impact on the lives of CLL patients and their families.

Many listeners will already know Demetri’s story and that he is a survivor of a brain tumor that caused him debilitating psychological and physical distress, but which also empowered him to change his life. It took such an experience for Demetri to truly understand that his time in this world is limited. This is not just true of him; it is true of you, too. It’s true of all of us. We’re all mortal, and how we choose to spend our precious time in the face of this reality is what gives our lives their meaning. It is what distinguishes Dr. Koffman’s life from yours, and yours from someone else’s. 

Dr. Koffman has made his choices, and hopefully, he will have many, many more to make. His story is one of perseverance, leadership, generosity, and service to a cause greater than himself. But besides serving as an important source of information and optimism about a very serious illness, we hope that his story and this conversation provide you with cause to reflect on your own life and on the things that matter most to you and how you want to spend your remaining time on this planet.

For more information about Brian Koffmar or to learn more about his work in CLL patient education and advocacy, please visit https://cllsociety.org

You can access the afterthoughts segment to this week’s rundown, the transcript of Demetri conversation with Dr. Koffman, as well as the episode rundown (show notes and educational materials about the substance of today’s conversation) through the Hidden Forces Patreon Page. All subscribers also gain access to our overtime feed, which can be easily be added to your favorite podcast application. 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Subscribe & Support the Podcast at http://patreon.com/hiddenforces

Join the conversation on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at @hiddenforcespod

Dr. Brian Koffman is a doctor turned CLL patient, whose popular blog and expansive volunteer efforts in other communities and in online patient advocacy and education has added an increasingly meaningful new dimension to his life’s work. His blog is arguably the most popular, trusted and accessible beacon for over 20,000 readers every month who have had their lives touched by CLL.

Koffman earned his medical degree from McGill University and completed his Family Practice residency at the University of Western Ontario, and his Psychiatry Fellowship at McMaster University. Dr. Koffman taught at the University of Waterloo and is a retired Clinical Professor at the University of Southern California, Keck School of Medicine where he also completed his Masters of Science in Medical Education.

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