We’re off to Dallas this morning. I have a doctor’s appointment that could have been avoided.
Remember my cute little poem that started with, “testing, testing, one, two, three, I’m prepping for a colonoscopy?” It had been ten years since I’d had one, which would have been okay, if my previous tests hadn’t revealed several polyps that had to be removed. The lab report called them precancerous. The doc considered my Francis family history of digestive tract issues, and recommended I come back in 3-5 years.
Ten years later, a total of twenty polyps were removed during an hour and a half long colonoscopy that normally takes twenty minutes.
A week later, I was driving home from a friend’s house, when my doctor called to tell me I had colon cancer. A couple of weeks later, I had nine inches of my large intestine, fifteen lymph nodes, ten more polyps, and my appendix removed.
The surgeon is positive the tumor had not spread outside the submucous of the large intestine in which case no further treatment is usually recommended. He decided to refer me to an oncologist for a second opinion. We’re headed that way now. I will let you know how it goes.
My reason, of course, for telling you all of this is to convince you not to delay having all of the preventive tests available to you. They save lives.
In my case, I have suffered some consequences of blowing them off, but if I hadn’t tired of my doctor and husband hounding me and finally had the dreaded colonoscopy, the big C would have progressed.
Stage I cancers have a survival rate of 80-95 percent. Stage II tumors have survival rates ranging from 55 to 80 percent. A stage III colon cancer has about a 40 percent chance of cure and a patient with a stage IV tumor has only a 10 percent chance of a cure.
I don’t like drinking that yucky stuff either, but now I have to do it every year, and I’ll enjoy every swallow.
Are you convinced?