LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A southern Indiana cancer patient took a gamble on an experimental treatment for cancer after being told he only had a few months to live.

Doctors at the University of Louisville say a clinical trial saved the Clarksville, Indiana, man's life and shrunk 20 lesions on his brain, giving him more precious time to spend with his wife and grandchildren.

Tony Babbs was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2015; in 2019 he was diagnosed with Stage 4 after it spread to his brain. Without any kind of treatment doctors gave him 2 to 3 months to live. But Babbs and his doctors took a chance on a clinical immunotherapy trial that hadn't been approved by the FDA yet.

By the time the treatment started, Babbs had already lost his ability to walk, write and do many things on his own. Four months later, the lesions on his brain were shrinking and he was able to relearn to walk and write again.

Babbs says he couldn't be more thankful to the doctors at UofL's James Graham Brown Cancer Center who recommended him for the trial that has saved his life.

"I'm truly blessed because when they said 2 to 3 months, I was kind of shocked. I was like 'Wow.' My wife was with me. When they said experimental stuff, I said I'd try anything. Can't kill me."

Doctors say Babbs could have a couple more years of the immunotherapy treatment, that has since been approved as treatment for lung cancer.

Doctors say thanks to the treatment, Babbs can continue raising his grandsons and a huge population of lung cancer patients will have a better chance at living a full life.

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