Woman: FedEx Lost My Cancer Sample

Marlene Van Duyne says she'll sue FedEx over missing shipment
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 14, 2014 10:08 AM CDT
Package handler Eythan Watts loads a delivery truck at a FedEx sorting facility Monday, Dec. 16, 2013, in Kansas City, Mo.   (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

(Newser) – As far as important packages go, this one is pretty high up there: After doctors found a tumor in Marline Van Duyne's right breast earlier this year, she chose to have a double mastectomy in Utah and was to start chemotherapy a month later—if her sample showed she was one of the 20% who need it. So she set a date with an oncologist to go over her results ... but her sample never showed up at the lab it was sent to. FedEx told her it was lost somewhere, she says, having last been scanned in California. "It's not like you're carrying a letter," Van Duyne tells ABC News. "It's a human body part."

"All of our customers' shipments are important to us," FedEx responded to KSL. "We work directly with our customers to resolve any issues." Even without her results, Van Duyne, 47, originally planned to go ahead with the chemotherapy to be safe, but she received some happy news yesterday that may change that. The hospital where Van Duyne had her procedure found 20 tissue samples that had been preserved, so Van Duyne—who says she plans to file suit against FedEx—will wait to plan her next step after her results come in in about a week. The hospital has again shipped a sample to the lab, though there's no word if it went with FedEx this time. (Read more breast cancer stories.)

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