My cancer story

From time to time I share my cancer story for those who are new to the blog.  In the last 6-7 months, I have learned that my cancer story actually began in the summer of 2007 not this past summer.

In the spring of 2007 I began having a number of abdomen issues in my right side.  I had more tests than I’d care to recall.  One of those tests at the age of 53 was my first colonoscopy.  The doctor found a polyp that was too large to be removed … a polyp whose biopsy at the time revealed it was precancerous.  I was scheduled for a sigmoid colectomy a month later in August where the surgeon would basically remove a section of the colon.  When they did the biopsy on the removed section of colon and the polyp, in 30 short days it had become cancerous.  The surgeon proclaimed that the cancer was contained to the colon wall and the polyp he removed and they got it all … colon cancer.

I didn’t realize it then but my doctor recently informed me that at that time in August 2007 was when I became a cancer survivor.

At this point you begin doing things so if it returns you will detect it early.   The earlier cancer is detected the better your odds of beating it back … or so the medical logic goes.

My family physician began doing CEA (carcinoembryonic antigen) test every six months.  This test measures the amount of a certain protein that may appear in the blood of some people who have certain kinds of cancers, especially large intestine (colon and rectal) cancer.  For four years, my counts were always low (and safe).

Also had a colonoscopy in late 2008, that came back clean with no polyps whatsoever.  Two and half years later in April 2011, I had another colonoscopy … no polyps.  But the surgeon saw an irritated place he was concerned with and scheduled a follow-up four months later.

In August 2011, I had the follow-up colonoscopy … still no polyps … but the surgeon could not get the scope past that irritated section and scheduled my second sigmoid colectomy the same week.  While he had no evidence it was cancer, he was certain.  As a pre-surgery precaution, he scheduled me for a CT scan that revealed an unknown mass.

Colon polyps typically start to grow from the lining of the colon towards the inside of the colon.  This polyp took root in the lining of the colon and grew towards the outside of the colon … the CEA tests, the colonoscopies weren’t geared to deal with such an abnomality …

My surgery lasted 7-8 hours … there was indeed a cancer mass.  The doctor removed as much of it as he could … but he couldn’t get it all.  The cancer had made such a mess of my colon that he couldn’t complete the sigmoid colectomy … and instead finished me off with a colostomy.  I’m now a bag man.

In that last CT scan, they also discovered some spots of concern on my lung.  So within a month I was back in the hospital so they could do a lung nodule needle biopsy … to determine if the colon cancer had spread to the lung.  The test confirmed that it had indeed spread to the lung.

My diagnosis: I have incurable Stage IV Metastatic Colon Cancer.

Then in September back to the hospital one more time … this time to have the port-catheter surgically inserted that would be used for chemotherapy treatments.

Once every two weeks, I go through my chemotherapy treatments.  It starts on Wednesday with about 4 hours of chemotherapy infusions at the oncologist office.  This is followed by 46 hours of at home treatment as I wear an infusion pump that is constantly pumping 5FU into me.  Then I return to the oncologist on Friday to have the pump disconnected from my port-catheter.

Next week will mark chemotherapy treatment #10.

I’m a cancer survivor for four and half years and counting …

And that is my cancer story.

Thank you Lord!

Bernie

Advertisements

About bwebbjr

A grandfather, father, husband, man, and a child of God who is following Christ Jesus and working out his salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work IN me, both to will and to work for His good pleasure (Philippians 2:12-13). I dodged my first bullet with cancer when a cancerous polyp was removed in a sigmoid colectomy surgery in August 2007. Four years later, in the midst of a second colectomy surgery we discovered I had Stage IV metastatic colon cancer. Rather than colectomy surgery I had colostomy surgery, which now means the colostomy bag is a part of my everyday life ... with the emphasis on life. God has given us a peace beyond understanding as my wife and I have traveled this journey. By the grace of God I am blessed to be a 6 plus year cancer survivor aka warrior. In writing, I am often wrestling with my own personal struggles and beliefs and in the midst God leads me to a lesson He wants me to learn ... or sometimes He simply touches me in the revelation of Himself. My hope is that the result you see here might touch your heart and glorify God. And let me be clear ... I am not the only one with something to say. Please join in the conversation sharing your faith, your cancer experiences, etc. I would love to hear from you. Bernie
This entry was posted in Cancer & Medicine, Surgery and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to My cancer story

  1. gopalelango says:

    Praise to God in Christ Jesus name.
    I have always kept these below verses when i am going under difficult times like you.
    1.So he went down and dipped seven times in the Jordan, according to the saying of the man of God; and his h flesh was restored like the flesh of a little child, and i he was clean. 2 Kings 5:14
    2.came from behind and m touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped. Luke 8:44
    3.He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God.
    He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the your inner man. Ephesians 3:16.
    Remember this , all things are good for those who loves God faithfully Romans 8:28,Genesis 50:20

    • bwebbjr says:

      Yes, all good passages … and there is always hope IN Christ Jesus … especially in the midst of trials and tribulations as God is shaping you.

      Thanks for the encouraging comment!

      Bernie

  2. gopalelango says:

    Sorry . Saint in Christ Gopalelango.

  3. Gary Taylor says:

    For a few minutes, I thought we were twins. The Mayor sent me your way today. Said you were like we are. Seems so. And the writing to sorta get it out there. Mine is sissy stage 4 compared to yours. Prostate cancer but with that new Provenge treatment beating up on those pc bad guys.

    Bestest part is your Walk. I like it. Feels good, right.

    You might enjoy my book in process, http://www.generationalfathering.com Might even have a generational legacy story to share. My personal story is found at The Wild Gray Goose (www.newseason.us). I’m subscribed

    • bwebbjr says:

      Thanks to the Mayor for sending you my way Gary. It’s always good to connect with a fellow believer and fellow cancer warrior/survivor. Cancer is cancer and I hope the battle is going well for you my friend.

      Thanks for the links to your websites. Be assured I am headed there next this morning to check them out.

      Be blessed IN Christ Jesus and His eternal love!

      Bernie

  4. Liel's Beat says:

    Reblogged this on Li'el in a Staccato Beat and commented:
    Thank-you God for women AND men willing to share their testimonies, God is truly sovereign over all situations, just put it in His hands!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s