Sarcoma survivor finds his way to remission at MD Anderson

As a high school soccer player, Alex Frankenfeld often heard his coach say, “Busca la forma,” which is Spanish for “Find a way.” Three years later, Alex was diagnosed with soft tissue sarcoma, and the phrase became a mantra that helped him get through the experience.  “I’m going to do whatever I can to beat this thing,” Alex told his mother on their first trip to MD Anderson in fall 2015. “Mom, I’m going to find a way.” Spotting soft tissue sarcoma symptoms Alex had just started his junior year at the University of Oklahoma when he began noticing sarcoma symptoms: frequent urination, constipation and back pain so intense he found himself in the emergency room. A CT scan revealed an 11-inch mass in his pelvis. He was diagnosed with stage II leiomyosarcoma, a very rare type of soft tissue sarcoma. At the time, Alex was only 21. After Alex received his diagnosis from a doctor in Dallas, he made two important decisions: he was coming to MD Anderson for soft tissue sarcoma treatment – his parents heard it was the best- and he was putting college on hold. He cancelled his plans to study abroad in Paris and took the spring semester off to focus on his health. “In some ways, it was a hard decision,” he says. “But in other ways, it was easy. My life was so much important than anything else.” Coming to MD Anderson for soft tissue sarcoma treatment Alex had his first appointment at MD Anderson’s the Sarcoma Center December 2015, where he was greeted by a social work counselor, who told him...