August 27, 2005
Living with Colon Cancer
Welcome to my "Living with Colon Cancer" diary. I hope someone finds this and finds it helpful in some way to know what someone else is experiencing, good and bad. I'm also writing this as some therapy for me, to be able to talk it out. I will try to write this in a conversation style and not be too technical about things.
In this first post, I thought I would lay out some background of who I am and how I got to where I am. I am a 66 year old guy, retired, but had been doing some part time work. I live on a 20 acre farm about 30 miles east of Louisville, Ky. I raise llamas and miniature donkeys, more as a hobby it seems. I felt I was a very healthy person, never broke a bone, never had any major illness, not taking any medications. My one problem has been a high PSA score and that's what started a chain of events to get me where I am. I was a year and a half behind getting my PSA blood test and went to the local hospital Health Fair for the blood work. To make a long story short, the results went to my family doctor and his staff were alerted so I go to see him. Actually the PSA was normal. I had been having some bowel problems and we reviewed my other symtoms, with the fact of a family history of colon cancer (my father died from it) and we decided that another colonoscopy should be done. That turned out to be the trigger of events that you could call fate, or Murphy's law, or if I didn't have bad luck I wouldn't have any luck at all. They couldn't complete the procedure because of a mass in the colon, so I was admitted to the hospital for a CT scan. The end result, major surgery with the S curve of the colon removed successfully. The bad news, the cancer cells have gotten out and I had spots on my liver and lungs. Of course the answer to that is chemotherapy and that is going to be along story, a six month treatment and that's what this diary is going to be about. Will it be the horror stories we all hear about or will the new drugs and new treatments make it liveable? Time will tell.
I received my first treatment yesterday and there were some surprises. I don't want this first post to be too long, so I will tell the story in the next post. Nothing like a hanging ending, right?