City of Hope Newport Beach Grateful Patient Gets ‘Hope’ Tattoo After Beating Cancer

Hope tattoo
Beth Coombs tattooed the word “hope” on her arm after beating cancer

A tattoo’s primary motivation is usually to mark a personal experience or struggle.

Last year, Elizabeth “Beth” Coombs got a tattoo that had two meanings.

Coombs was first diagnosed in 2020 with Stage 4 colon carcinoma. Her City of Hope team quickly created a tailored treatment plan.

Officials from the City of Hope claim that Coombs received preoperative chemotherapy. Six tumors were then removed by surgeons. A course of “cleanup” chemo helped ensure any remaining cancer cells in her body were eliminated.

Misagh Karimi M.D. was her medical oncologist and director of clinical operations at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island. She is also a colon cancer specialist at the City of Hope Orange County Lennar Foundation Cancer Center. In January 2022, she announced the good news: Her body had no signs of cancer.

“My emotions were indescribable,” Coombs said. “The joy of no more chemo or anything else was overwhelming. It was both a feeling of relief and shock. Words don’t even have the power to explain the feelings I had. They were so vast.”

Beth Coombs
Grateful patient Beth Coombs

Coombs stated that she now spends at least one month doing something for herself, and enjoys life with her family and friends.

One of those outings was attending a taping of “The Late, Late Show with James Corden” in Los Angeles with a friend. They decided to get tattoos after the taping and found a local tattoo shop.

Combs already had a tattoo in mind: the word “hope,” which she had tattooed on the inside of her forearm in graceful cursive. The “e” forms the shape of a cancer ribbon, with a heart at the bottom, and the blue ink represents colon cancer awareness.

Coombs felt that any discomfort was worth it to have a visual reminder of her physical or emotional healing.

Coombs explained that her new tattoo serves to remind her of her gratitude and as a mantra for moving forward.

Also, said Combs, “I got the tattoo because the City of Hope saved my life.”

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