Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

BRAVE BRADEN'S BUCKET LIST AS HE FIGHTS FOR LIFE Braden Pins Hopes on New Drug Therapy

Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

BRAVE BRADEN'S BUCKET LIST AS HE FIGHTS FOR LIFE Braden Pins Hopes on New Drug Therapy

Article excerpt

Byline: Kate Dodd kate.dodd@thechronicle.com.au

HAVING a terminal illness hasn't stopped Toowoomba boilermaker Braden Lang from getting out and living his life the way he wants - it's only made him more determined.

When he was 14, the now 23-year-old had a melanoma on his forearm.

That went away for eight years and came back about halfway through last year under his arm-pit as a tumour in his lymph nodes.

Doctors found another tumour in his left lung and he had to undergo radiation treatment before finding out five days before Christmas that he was terminally ill.

Braden said without any treatment, he was given six months to live.

So he was put on a mixture of two drugs, Dabrafenib and Trametinib, which were part of a trial study.

However, they stopped working after six months, so now he's taking a new drug Pembrolizumab.

"This new drug I'm on they hope it can give me two extra years. Hopefully if I make it to 25 I'll be happy," he said.

"It doesn't bother me because it is what it is and you can sit there and cry about it or get out and do what you want to do.

"Not the most ideal lifestyle but, hey, some of us have to draw the short straw."

Braden isn't letting the diagnosis get him down and is committed to living his life to the fullest.

"It's made me actually more determined to do what I want to get done because I know I'm only here for a finite amount of time," he said.

"As an illness it hasn't really stopped me doing a lot of things - I do have less energy, but the stigma all terminally ill people are all sick and all in nursing homes or care is something that isn't true."

After completing his apprenticeship through James Fab and The Apprenticeship Company he was named the winner of the Harry Hauenschild Apprentice of the Year 2015 at Darling Downs South West Regional heat of the Queensland Training Awards. …

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