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Where were you when you found out you had ColoRectal cancer?

just4Brooks's picture
Posts: 988
Joined: Jun 2009

I thought it might be fun (or maybe not) to hear some stories about how others found out that they had Colorectal Cancer.

For me it was right after I had my colonoscopy. I woke up to find my wife talking to the doctor and my wife was crying. Right then I knew it had to be cancer and it was. The doctor told me that she took a biopsy of the tumor but after doing this for 25 years she didn't have to wait for the results. She said I have cancer and it looks like it's bad. I was staged about 2 weeks later (that was the longest 2 weeks in my life)and sure enough it was Advanced stage 3 colorectal cancer.

So what's your story?


Lovekitties's picture
Posts: 3366
Joined: Jan 2010

I was at the surgeons office for what I thought was "just" a fistula.

After the exam he left the room long enough for me to dress and came out with "I am 99% sure you have cancer" and here is what we are going to do about it.

Good thing I am a believer in "tell it like it is".

Marie who loves kitties

Kenny H.'s picture
Kenny H.
Posts: 503
Joined: Aug 2010

At colonoscopy center dr office. May 17th, 2010. Will never forget that day and my life has changed and totally different ever since! endless blood draws, dr appts, surgeries ect! you know the drill.

Annabelle41415's picture
Posts: 6694
Joined: Feb 2009

Went in for a colonoscopy day before Thanksgiving because of rectal bleeding and PCP thought it was just a hemorrhoid but heard the doctor say she didn't see one and wanted me back the following Monday for another scope. It was the worst Thanksgiving ever.


PhillieG's picture
Posts: 4912
Joined: May 2005

but I get your point Brooks
Feb 25, 2004: I was home, my wife was at work. My sister-in-law was over and our kids were playing.
I got a phone call saying I have Stage IV CC after spending the day getting a sonogram then a CT scan...

I wish I could say "I walked into a bar with a Rabbi and a Priest and a duck under my arm..."

just4Brooks's picture
Posts: 988
Joined: Jun 2009

LOL@Phil, Yes, not fun

abrub's picture
Posts: 2158
Joined: Mar 2010

When I was brought to my room post-op from a "routine" hysterectomy, my dr and husband came in and told me I had metastatic appendix cancer.

I went in for a hysterectomy because of some odd fibroids. Blood tests for ovarian and uterine cancer had come back normal; I'd had my first colonoscopy 6 weeks prior and it was clear. My gyn decided that I should get the fibroids out as they were causing some problems. However, I was assured going in to surgery that the likelihood of cancer was virtually nil. My dr found a tumor encompassing my ovary, and the frozen section during surgery showed it to be a cancer of appendiceal origin.

It was several weeks before I got in to see an oncologist, and then his advice was that I get to a specialty center, so it was several more weeks before that. And so my journey began....


joemetz's picture
Posts: 493
Joined: Nov 2011

I went for blood work as we had been chasing "Gout" for about 3 months.
I was run down and tired a lot... but i thought it was because i was overweight and out of shape.

Had radiation to kill non-hodkins lymphoma cancer back in 1989.
Last radiation treatment was March 3, 1990.

Blood work showed White Blood Count over 1,200, Hemaglobin at 7.8, and CEA level of 65.
I had no idea what this all meant, but my primary doc had a pretty good idea.

Had a CT scan of the heart, and that's when they saw the top of the liver.
two days later another CT scan of the liver and colon area.
30 mets to the liver largest one was 7.5cm x 6cm x 5cm

After 22 weeks of folfox, Erbitux, Oxiliplatin, & Leucavorin... the mets in the liver are all smaller that 1cm. Its' working!!!

surgery this month to remove the Bag!!! and reconnect my colon and remove the dead tumor in the colon.

by the way... my colon cancer.... caused by Radiation from 1990!
Doc told me that no one in their right mind will ever radiate someone as much as I recieved back then.

crazy cancer and crazy treatments to remove it.

Dx's November 2011
Colon Cancer stage IV with mets to the liver.

tommycat's picture
Posts: 790
Joined: Aug 2011

My journey began with a trip to the GP who said I had an anal fissure, then to the ob/gyn who said I had internal hemmaroids, then the urgent care, where I was sent home with a receptacle to poop in and bring back to be tested for a virus.
Lab couldn't detect this mysterious virus so a sigmoidoscpoy was scheduled at 10am the following day. I drove myself there where the the doctor performing the procedure audibly sighed and said he hated to see cancer in people my age.
Wait, Cancer????
I went into a corner and sat in a chair couldn't say a word....the hospital called my husband to come in immediately, and he came and we went home--then went to the movies to let it all settle in.
That was June 24th, 2009, and my twins had recently turned 4 yrs old.

annalexandria's picture
Posts: 2573
Joined: Oct 2011

my GP thought I had lupus, largely based on the fact that his wife had lupus (he seemed to be living in an episode of "House"). Luckily for me, my tumor got bored, ate its way through my colon and went exploring the neighborhood. The resulting peritonitis led to the ER, and emergency surgery. Seemed miraculously cured of lupus post-surgery, and no one told me a tumor had been found. Happy couple of weeks! Until...got a phone call from my doctor's nurse, asking for me and my husband to come and see the doctor on his lunch hour. NOT a good sign. The call came just before my kids left for school, so they knew something bad was going down (my sister had died a couple of years before, so cancer was on everyone's radar...except my doc, i guess). When we got to his office, he hemmed and hawed about "growths" and what-not, until I finally said "If I understand you correctly, you're saying I have cancer." He was very relieved that I was the one willing to bring up the C word. Took several more weeks to get pathology results (my tumor got to travel to MA to see the "world's foremost pathologist"...that little bugger is better traveled than I am!), and the dx of "not your garden variety of colon cancer".

carrieh's picture
Posts: 146
Joined: May 2012

I have horrible cell service where I live so I pulled into my dads driveway while I was waiting for the results (2 days after colonoscopy). I didn't want to worry him so I said I was texting and wanted to be safe.

I got the news; got out of the car and burst into hysterical tears. He just hugged me and looked shocked. My brother died when he was 5 from cancer/ I'm 32 now...I guess we kind of thought we had made it out of the woods? I told him I promised I would make it..somebody upstairs just forgot to carry a one or something when they were calculating things..it would work itself out.

It was a sunny day


JayhawkDan's picture
Posts: 206
Joined: Apr 2012

I had a colonoscopy on Jan. 20, this year, and met with the -oscopy doc the following Monday. My wife and I are sitting in the exam room and the kindly old doc comes in -- he's probably 75-ish -- and looks like his dog just died. He hands me the pathology report and asks me to read it. He couldn't even tell me. The word "adenocarcinoma" stood out and I knew I was in trouble. My wife was sitting a couple of feet away and all I said was "that doesn't sound good." And he said "indeed, it's not." Told me to find a surgeon. Called my gp's office when I got home and said I need to see him. And the receptionist said that he has an opening in a couple of weeks. I just said, you don't understand, I need to see him today, and told her the news I had just received. They got me in that afternoon and he looked at the pathology report and sent me for scans a couple of days later. A couple of days after that we were at the oncologist recommended by my gp, and about 10 seconds into his dx he said "you'll be on chemo for the rest of your life." My first thought was, "chemo for 30 years, uggh." But he soon followed up with telling us it was "terminal." Not sure what else he said, something about trials, treatment, stage iV, blah, blah, blah. Anyway, I went from thinking I had gastritis to a doctor telling me I was going to die. All in less than 2 weeks. But I disagree and plan on being around for awhile -- especially the more I learn about CRC, mostly from this board, and others. Damn right I will!


Posts: 30
Joined: May 2012

went to the dr's jan 31 to get my hemroid checked out, he did a simply exam and said he'd been doing this a lot of years and it looks like cancer and left the room. had to sit there a few minutes and get it together as my 17 year old daughter was in the waiting room. he scheduled a colonoscopy for feb 10th and when i was leaving the nurse said, i will pray for you. so i new, but i got the diagnosis on feb 14, happy valentines day! had my resection on march 28 and its been fun every since. they say it is stage 3 and it was superficial but still worried as hell...and still a lot of treatment ahead.

herdizziness's picture
Posts: 3642
Joined: Apr 2010

I looked up on the internet my symptoms before I went to the ER, it was either appendicitis or colon cancer. I was betting on colon cancer because appendicitis didn't last for 6 months of pain in the side. My pain had got so unbearable that I couldn't sit, couldn't lay, couldn't stand to get rid of the darn sharp pain in the side. I was hoping for pain pills.
I got the pain pills and the diagnosis of colon cancer at midnight, walked out to my truck, smoked a cigarette (well, actually many of them)just repeating the same word over and over, "SH!T". Then got in my truck, drove home, and waited until mid-morning to break the news to family. Weird night indeed.
Winter Marie
DX 02/06/2010
Stage IV Terminal Colon Cancer

barbebarb's picture
Posts: 464
Joined: Oct 2011

After I had the colonoscopy and had recovered the gastro Dr touched my arm and said we'll have the result in a couple days. My daughter was with me (a high schooler at the time) I work at a hospital so I requetsted a copy of my report and read it on a cold Jan. night in my car by myself. I then went home and told my kids and husband at the time and we cried.
I had my stools tested for blood in the fall for blood and that was negative. I tried to schedule a routine colonoscopy before end of 2007 and they had too many routine ones due to insurance end of year scheduled.
During the fall of 2007 we were chasing my diagnosis of MS, which I didn't have the guts to get the lumbar puncture to confirm until April 2008, after my surgery in Feb., a lower bowel resection to remove the polyp.
So far I have not been symptomatic with MS but the medication is expensive and I thought this would be my biggest concern.

Posts: 125
Joined: May 2012

Friday, April 13th - at the colonoscopy center - "you have a tumor in your rectum, i'm going to call the surgeon. why don't you go back to sleep?" Seriously. I haven't slept well since.

Momof2plusteentwins's picture
Posts: 508
Joined: May 2012

That date changed my life and my family. I had a colonoscopy scheduled for about a month after having poop problems for about 6 months. After the colonoscopy the dr said he found a large tumor in my rectum. He said he biopsied it but he was sure it was cancer. Surgery is June 19th.

Posts: 1282
Joined: Apr 2012

ope your surgery goes well with a speedy recovery. We can get beyond this. Best of luck to you.

steveandnat's picture
Posts: 887
Joined: Sep 2011

I had a bloodf tests done including colonospy and was called to Dr office. I was there by myself and he told me it was cancer. He immediately set up appointment with oncologist. Needlless to say I was in shock...couldn't hold back the tears when I broke the news to my wife. Nothing has been the same. That was in June 2009. So here we are 3 years later colon..liver..lungs..still.fighting. pray we all fight this awful cancer to the best of our ability. Jeff

Helen321's picture
Posts: 1427
Joined: May 2012

Bleeding in December, wasn't too worried, thought hemmorhoids were getting really bad. Then I found a cane corso and I only know a little about dogs (she was a HUGE dog and was dirty and looked very old. Turns out she was only 7 and just a neglected breeder dog who was thrown out - she's being adopted this week -- http://www.canecorsorescue.org/2012/02/mystery-nj-adultfemale.html?utm_source=BP_recent -- for any dog lovers). Anyway, my cat does not like dogs and vice versa so I kept her in my garage until it dropped to 24 degrees so I had to move all my son's furniture out of his room and put the dog in there. Was working full time and then some, running a family and unexpectedly taking care of a huge dog. Turned out the dog has roundworms which people can get so I had the dog treated. When the bleeding got heavier I figured I had roundworms. Finally found the dog a rescue that would take her and got myself to a GI for colonscopy immediately after waiting to hear about my roundworms. No roundworms. He sees a growth and some polyps, we have a conversation about how my GP should never have performed a sigmoidoscopy because he was not equipped to remove polys and now there's a growth,, says we'll see and then calls with results while I'm at work "It's malignant one two three, you'll remove it and move on" with the biggest smile through the phone. I was at work and I work a lot of hours and am always tired so all I really heard was his happy tone saying one two three you're done, you should remove this right away and I thought okay cool one two three I'm done. Didn't make the malignant wording connection. Went to the surgeon a week later all smiley thinking I was just having a simple procedure to have a growth removed. Surgeon starts talking about cancer and I said wait I'm confused and he said why do you think you are here today so I know we're on the same page? And he said this is why I wish doctors would just flat out say you have cancer. My GI told me so happily that I had it. Left the surgeons office, sat in front of the most beautiful river crying while thinking about the people in their waterfront homes and people out on the boats and how life looked so perfectly beautiful with the water and the sun but suddenly my life felt upside down. Sat in front of the same river crying when I heard the surgery didn't work. It really is a beautiful river.

thxmiker's picture
Posts: 1282
Joined: Oct 2010

The first time, I went in for a stomach ache to my GP. He asked me to wait for a few minutes because he was going to have lunch with a friend and wanted his friend to see me. I had surgery 3 hours later.

The second time we were vacationing in Arizona, and I had a stomach ache that as horrible. My wife drove me down 150 miles to Phoenix and we stopped in a hospital. The first Doc talked to me and told me to drive 8 miles further down the road to another hospital. Little did we know it was a colon specialty hospital! I had a great surgeon find 4 tumors, two were smaller then 4mm! I would probably not be here if not for that surgeon!

Best Always, mike

Helen321's picture
Posts: 1427
Joined: May 2012

Wow 3 hours later! Lucky for you it all worked the way it did.

Joy1216's picture
Posts: 293
Joined: Mar 2006

After my first screening colonoscopy, the gastroenterologist took my husband and I into a conference room. He said that he had found a polyp that was too large to remove and that I'd have to have surgery to remove it, probably by laparoscopy (boy was he wrong!). He had blood taken to check my CEA (my first clue it was cancer) and told me to schedule a CT scan for the surgeon and to schedule an appointment with my GP in about 10 days to go over all the results and for me to contact a surgeon (I used the surgeon who had taken out my gall bladder - he was also an oncological surgeon but I didn't know it). He also biopsied the polyp. I read in the literature that the gastro gave me that most large polyps contain cancer. I totally disregarded that statement (my second clue it was cancer). Two days later the gastro's office called me at home and said they found cancer cells in the polyp. I felt like I'd been hit by a freight train. I was very fortunate to be diagnosed at Stage 1. Six years later there have been no recurrences.

Phil64's picture
Posts: 838
Joined: Apr 2012

In November I found a lump on my right testicle. I thought it was just swollen but my wife made me promise to go see the doctor, so I made an appointment the next day. The doctor was out but I say our family doctor's assistant. She setup an ultrasound for Friday (the next day) at our local hospital. I was scheduled to leave for Vegas on Sunday. After the ultrasound my family doctor called me up and told me he setup an appointment with a urologist for me on Monday. I told him about vegas and he suggested I cancel the trip (which I did). The urologist saw me around 3pm on the following Monday and he told me he was 99% sure I had cancer. Shock # 1.

Fast forward a few months to March. I went to see my family doctor again - my wife told me to go since I was having problems with bowel movements. The family doctor didn't waste anytime setting up a colonoscopy. On April 21 I awoke from the colonoscopy and the doctor told me he thinks he found the blockage - it was a tumor and he was pretty sure it was cancer. Biopsy confirmed I had a second primary cancer.

Fast forward a few weeks later (this past Friday). I had yet another surgery - to remove a nodule from my right lung. We had been watching the nodule as follow-up to the testicular cancer, but now it had grown and there were already two primary cancers found in me... I kind of expected this to be yet another primary cancer (pestimistic outlook I guess). Anyway the lung wedge resection was completed on Friday, 6/1 and the preliminary diagnosis is that it is a metastisis of the colon cancer. But this was not 100% for sure. They are pretty sure it is NOT a metastisis of the testicular cancer but it could be lung cancer and there also may be a fungal infection as well. Official results are expected either today or tomorrow.

And now I'm trying to understand what life with stage IV colorectal cancer will be like... And how long I might have left to live... And I'm also trying to keep a positive outlook on fighting this ugly disease.

God Bless us All!


AlinaM's picture
Posts: 18
Joined: Apr 2012

I had been having very bad digestion and poop issues for awhile (blood, etc), and finally was too weak to walk much further than from bedroom to kitchen. Went to GI doc and had colonoscopy. During the procedure, I was in twilight sleep, I woke up and the doc asked if I wanted to see the tumor. He then proceeded to show me the tumor and tell me it was most likely cancer. After the procedure, I laid on the gurney and just cried while the nurses gave me apple juice and waited for my husband to come back. It was all confirmed a couple of days later and then I was in surgery the next week. Whew!

Posts: 308
Joined: Mar 2012

....we were on a nine day vacation out west , Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Las Vegas .... I didn't have any energy for sight seeing, even contemplated an ER visit in Durango..called my doc got an appt for day after our return. Ended up in ER once home and was told I was very close to requiring a transfusion and that I had a bad case of colitis, ended up a few days later back at my doctor requesting transfusion on a Thursday, had colonoscopy on FRiday, heard my surgeon say, here's our problem, I remember thinking , crap, had surgery on Monday, stage IIIb, aggressive... Will be a year Saturday. Had CT in December after chemo, 2d one in April and scheduled for 3d one J uly 25th... My life as I knew it before June 10, 2011 , no longer exists... Cancer sucks but I think the constant fear of it coming back sucks worse if that is possible!

Posts: 1736
Joined: Jul 2007

The fear of it coming back has literally almost drove me off the deep end, there were times I had convinced myself it was back, just horrible, but it does get a bit easier as it goes...and I pray it will for you too..


Sonia32's picture
Posts: 1078
Joined: Mar 2009

having a colonoscopy, and after the doctor called us into a separate room saying they had found something but not confirming what it was until after biopsy and ct scan. Panicking for a few days, finally got called in to a special evening appointment. Waiting nervously and saw people coming out crying etc, and I knew something wasn't right. Then got to my turn and I was told, 'we found a tumor'. Special nurse was there etc, got told survival rate by accident 5 years lol, was calm at the time lol. Anyway 3 years later, minus a husband and my sanity, (touch wood my head lol) stage 3, 10/11 lymph nodes in remission here.

lfondots63's picture
Posts: 822
Joined: Jan 2006

So I was told at 42 that all my problems had to be divirticulitis. I went for a colonoscopy telling my job that I would be into work that afternoon when I was done. I woke up and was told I had a tumor. No going to work for me. They were operating the next day. My birthday. I was actually down waiting for my operation the day of my birthday and someone noticed on my paperwork that it was my birthday. They wished me a happy birthday and I started crying. Not the way I wanted to spend my birthday. I now think of it as my 'RE birthday'. I am much healthier since this happened. It was a call to action for me. Dx 12/19/2005. This board was a life saver and taught me so much. HUGS to everyone here.

Posts: 835
Joined: Apr 2004

I was 31, my wife was pregnant with our first child and went to see surgeon for the results of my biopsy. He walked in a picked up the piece of paper he had left on the desk and in front of the three other people in the room who he hadn't introduced said- 'I suppose you have already read this. It's your histology report and its an adenocarcinoma'. Probably the worst 'breaking bad news' example I have ever come across as a doctor. Never really forginven him for it to be honest. Have had lots of good experiences with docs since but it still makes me angry to think about how poorly he did it- I think he was hoping we would read the report ourselves (both my wife and I are docs) and save him the job of breaking the bad news.



Posts: 33
Joined: Apr 2012

My heart goes out to you, really. I used to think doctors were the closest things to god's until I had serious illnesses. There just like anyone else in any walk of life or profession. Some are truly great and some are smart enough to get into medical school, but they do not do it to end suffering and pain, but to make a lot of money and perhaps have status.

tootsie1's picture
Posts: 5065
Joined: Feb 2008

I was in the hospital. The day before I had gone to the bathroom and filled the toilet with blood. What a shock! My wonderful family doctor immediately admitted me to the hospital. The next day I had a series of tests, and the gastroenterologist came in and told me I had cancer. I was too drugged up at the time to get too hysterical. That came later.

Kim, I feel your pain about the "worst Thanksgiving ever." They kept me in the hospital after the diagnosis, and my surgery was the day after Thanksgiving. So Thanksgiving was spent "enjoying" an IV dinner.


marbleotis's picture
Posts: 714
Joined: Mar 2012

It was 1/13/12, Friday the 13th. My story - I had no signs of colon cancer. Thought kidney stones because all pain was in left side, the cancer was in the ascending colon (right side). I was very slightly anemic. So since we had every other test done and I still kept on my DRs that something was terribly wrong we did an upper and lower GI. I woke up, opened my eyes and saw the Dr and Nurse that told me they found colon cancer. The spoke to my husband first and said it can be fixed surgically/chemo. You can think of the glass as half full/half empty. Once I heard the word "cancer" I heard nothing after that. I also became completely alert even with the propofal. I met with the surgeon and Onc the next week, had the surgery and I am on chemo #8 of 12. I am very lucky my post surgery scans showed no cancer in any organs. It was in 3 nodes. I look forward to being done with chemo, having the post chemo 6 week scan and colonoscopy in Jan. I will NEVER forget the second the Dr said the word cancer. I knew the old me would be gone and there now is emerging a new me. More easy going, 60 pounds lighter (chemo-Ouch), trying to enjoy life. I saw a baby deer in our backyard this evening and I named her Fern. Cancer can really open up your eyes to a world you never really looked at before. That's my story (so far). To add to the story - this was 2 weeks before my 50th birthday.

Posts: 1282
Joined: Apr 2012

At hospital after colonoscopy. On a Friday-tough weekend. Monday saw the surgeon, and so it began. But she did a good job. It's now thirty months later and I'm NED. Hard to beat that with a stick. LOL I find it scarey how young most of you are. My first coconoscopy was at age 77.

Posts: 33
Joined: Apr 2012

Never had any real symptoms. Cleaning up after Hurricane Ike came ashore...I started having pain on my right side if I ate anything solid, went to my GP...he ran a scan...sent me to a gastro doctor that did a colonoscopy within a week. It looked like I had diverticulitis...went in for surgery...when I woke up I was told stage 3c. I never had any symptoms like really tired, bleeding, long term pain. Odd, same thing happened with my brain tumor. No headaches, nausea, falling, etc....no symptoms. Then one day a grand mal seizure, ran an MRI and found it. but II must say, I had a great neurosurgeon...very young, but excellent...and my gastroenterologist went the extra mile too.

Doc_Hawk's picture
Posts: 685
Joined: Jan 2012

I'd been having some bad diarrhea for well over a year and on occasion there was some blood afterwards. In 2007 my PCP had given me take home test for colon cancer and it was negative, so I didn't really worry about that. Since the blood was in the water of the bowl and not in the stool itself, I figured hemorrhoids. I didn't have health insurance between the end of 2007 and November 2009, and when I finally got on a plan, I was more concerned about my legs than my "poopage." I was having a lot of pain in my feet, they would get so hot that I'd have to put them in ice water and it felt like fire ants marching up and down my legs.

In March 2010, my PCP started me on neurontin for neuropathy and it was then that we started to address my bowel problems. By then, every time I'd go to the bathroom, I was screaming so loud that it's amazing my neighbors never called the police. I had bruises on my left forearm from when I'd brace myself on the edge of counter because the pain was so intense. I was scheduled for a colonoscopy on May 19, 2010 and when I came out from the gas, the doctor told me they had found a large tumor. It was so big that I was having to wipe around it after going to the bathroom! I told him that I'd expected something bad, colitis or Chrone's maybe, but not that bad.

By the time that I got home, the import of what he'd said finally sank in when the gas wore off. All I could do was dial my sisters phone number and have a friend tell her the news while I broke down. I couldn't even talk to anyone about it that day. But, now two years later, cancer better watch out because I'm kicking it's nasty little @$$ all over the place!


Posts: 1736
Joined: Jul 2007

I had a colonoscopy on a Tuesday, I remember the Doctor telling my partner that we should be very concerned. I dont even remember being worried or anything, guess I just wanted to eat some food. The next day I was outside my office having a smoke with a friend of mine, when my cell phone rang, I answered it, it was the doctor that did the scope, he asked me if I was working, I answered yes I am at work, he then started to kind of talk in circles, after a few minutes I realized what he was concerned about, he was hinting about my profession and if I was out on patrol and if I had my weapon with me. I reassured him my weapon was safely locked in my gun locker. Then he just bluntly said they just called him about the path report and that I did have colon cancer, I remember my legs falling out from under me. I started crying, my friend got all white and he started crying after I said I have cancer. I dont really remember much after that, other than us crying in the parking lot. I had to go in and tell my boss, they had a good friend of mine drive me home, they didnt tell her anything but that I needed a ride home. So as we were walking to my car, I said Angel did they tell you, she said no, that all they said was you needed to get home and needed someone to drive me. Well I told her I just got the news that I have cancer. She fell apart, cried all the way to my house, we kind of laughed a bit as it was almost to the point I needed to drive because she was so upset.

And well the rest is history, I am stage 4, been NED for 3.5 years now, and I thank GOD everyday that he continues to keep me clear. I have no rhyme or reason as to why I am here and so many others are not, other than to say God has a plan for me... I just continue to pray that I am willing and able to do what he needs me to do...


Posts: 2
Joined: Jun 2012

Was admitted to the hospital on Feb 16 with intense right lower quadrant pain. After two days laying there waiting for someone to decide what was wrong with me they decided to do exploratory surgery. I woke up afterwards and couldn't figure out why my husband kept leaving the room. He was trying to catch my parents in the hallway. The moment they and the surgeon walked in the door(they live 45 miles away) I knew something was wrong. Was diagnosed stage 2. 6 months of chemo followed by nearly 20 years of no cancer until January 2012. Diagnosed with a totally separate endometrial cancer (UPSC).

Posts: 37
Joined: Dec 2011

I went to get a physical when I turned 40 (haven't had one since I turned 18 and went to college). I went because I was getting "cramps" in my stomach and I was passing blood in my stool. Doctor checked me out and said I had hemrroids. Left it at that. 1 year later I go back, cramping getting worse and still have blood in stool. Pain in stomach would go away after a bowel movement. Make an appointment with different doctor and he says I have Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Great take some drugs for that. Condition did not get any better. Then on November 2 I get home after work, running around picking up kids and dropping them off etc. I feel like crap. Lay down for a bit, and finally go to bed. Wake up numerous times through out the night, dry heaves, not able to drink or eat anything. Made a call to work said not coming in, should be in tomorrow. Girlfriend calls me about 4:30 to see how I was doing, and I said not much better. She asked if she should come and take me to ER and I said YES (and I hate going to the doctor, or hospital). It takes her 30 minutes to get me from bedroom to car and 10 minutes to the hospital. Get to ER room hook up IV's and send me for CT Scan. They found blockage in the colon. Discuss with surgeon on call and says to admit me. Get admitted and met with the surgeon on Friday. She wanted to do a sigma scope, so that was scheduled. She had to stop as she could not get past tumor. She said she needed to do surgery to remove tumor, and wanted to know if I wanted to do it tonight (and she was willing to stay) or tomorrow with her colleague. I said lets get this over with. Went in about 8:30pm and come out about 12:30am... Took out 18 lymph nodes as well. Sent in for biopsy. Came out with a ostomy and very sore stomach. Went to girl friends parents house about a week later and got the call that the tumor was cancerous.. set up appointments to meet with Oncologist and was told it was stage IV... and here I am today.. after 8 treatments of chemo, one small liver resection and a Portal Vein Embolization, I am waiting for my major liver resection on June 28. They are talking about taking 80% of the right side of the liver out. I had 6 tumors in the liver and they have significantly shrunk. I feel fortunate that they are doing surgery and the outlook has been positive! Anxiously waiting for it to be June 28th!!!! to answer the originally question.. I was at my soon to be in-laws house when I found out on the phone on a Saturday afternoon!

Posts: 1428
Joined: Feb 2011

It's complicated....went to ER feeling breathless....did x-rays found blood clots in lungs....from there basically they figured it was ovarian cancer after other tests and scans, lots of poking and prodding ...was sent to another facility as my docs. wanted a second opinion...stayed in hospital for a month because of a completely blocked colon and blood clots in lung..there was some talk of doing chemo. for ovarian cancer to shrink the tumors...they did colon and gyno. surgery...surgeons shocked when path came back colon cancer stage 1V.

Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2012

I'm new here, and feel like I'm getting to know many of you from the posts I've been reading. It's the first chance I've had to hear from others like myself, and I think this will be a great help to me.

Like others of you, my gastroenterologist (GE) somewhat botched things. I'd been putting it off, but finally decided to get my first colonoscopy at age 57. Had to wait 6 mos. for it (after the Dr. rescheduled). Then was told he'd removed 2 "fairly large" polyps. When he called with the biopsy results he said there were "cancerous cells" in one polyp, but that the margins were clear. He didn't say anything about surgery. 2 mos. later he did a sigmoidoscopy to make sure there was no regrowth (not exactly protocol, come to find out). That was clear, so I thought I was good to go. Another couple of weeks went by and he asked me to come by his office and said he'd been thinking about my case and recommended a procedure done by a colon surgery specialist that would remove more of the mucosa without resecting the colon itself (just to be sure there were no additional "cancerous cells"). I went to see the specialist, who was very arrogant and scoffed at the GE's recommendation. He said I needed a resection but that it wasn't clear from the GE's notes where the polyps were. So I ended up having another sigmoidoscopy then and there. That was my first inkling that things were more serious than I'd been led to believe. I decided that I wanted a second opinion before making a decision about surgery.

It was at that point that things turned around for me. I saw another surgeon who I loved, because he finally took the time to go through the original pathology report with me and explain everything so that I understood my situation. Turns out the GE had failed to tell me that both polyps were cancerous (and invasive). He had also failed to use dye markers when he removed them, so no one could tell exactly where they'd been. It was this surgeon who also finally came out and told me in plain English that I had cancer, and why the protocol was for me to have the resection. I wasn't exactly happy about everything at that point, but I was satisfied that I was making the right decision. Needless to say, he's the one I went to for the surgery.

That wasn't quite the end of the story, though. After surgery, he asked if I wanted to consult with an oncologist within his group practice. At first I said no, but later changed my mind and am very glad I did. It turned out that the pathology from the surgery showed a microcluster of cancer in one lymph node, which put me at Stage IIIa. So I guess that's when I finally got the whole picture. The oncologist said I could reduce my chance of recurrence by doing chemo, but it was most effective when started within 6 wks. of surgery. So, 1 week later (with port newly implanted) I began chemo. Finished 12 treatments in Nov. 2011 and everything's been clear so far (fingers crossed).

plh4gail's picture
Posts: 1238
Joined: Oct 2010

When I was doing pre ops for colonoscopy for my symptoms, my Nurse was going over questions and asked me how long I'd had cancer. She was reading off the H&P from my GI Doctors office visit a couple of days prior when he did an exam in his office. I said "I have cancer?" Her eyes teared up and she flipped the chart around for me to read, as there was nothing she could do or say at this point to take it back. My daughter, 25 was there also. Later I asked my Dr about knowing and not mentioning it and he said at that time of my exam he didn't tell me he felt the tumor and knew what it was. He said he didn't tell me at that time because he knew it would make it very difficult for the upcoming prep that was necessary for diagnosis. I think he was right about that, it was hard enough as it was. I felt very sorry for the Nurse.

Posts: 370
Joined: Aug 2011

So many stories...............I had a colonscopy at age 48 because I had been having bowel clustering issues. The test came up clear so to me that was that. I continued to have symptoms for the next five years. At four and a half years though, the bleeding started. I finally went to see a colorectal surgeon who had been advertised in our paper as being new at a medical center in another town, (having no colorectal surgeons in our town).
I wavered between thinking I had internal hemmorhoids to recognizing something was really wrong. The colorectal doctor could feel the mass during the digital exam. He told me he thought it was cancer and scheduled a colonoscopy and endoscopic ultrasound for the following Monday. He was very kind but I felt like I had entered a nightmare. He even gave he his cell phone number in case I needed to talk to him over the weekend. I had an hour and a half drive home by myself which was very difficult. I just kept trying to focus and breathe to get home. The colonoscopy confirmed his suspicions. As soon as he said, rectal mass, I knew it was cancer though.

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