boampong's Journey with Colorectal (Colon) Cancer

Survivor: Colorectal (Colon) Cancer

Patient Info: Finished active treatment less than 5 years ago, Diagnosed: over 6 years ago, Female, Age: 64, KRAS mutation positive: Don't Know, BRAF mutation positive: Don't Know, Stage III

  1. 1
    • boampong
    • Experience with Colorectal (Colon) Ca...
    about 5 years ago
    boampong's Avatar

    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    I began feeling that something was wrong in July/August 2010. I went to my primary care physican who sent me to a gastr-intestinal specialist for the usual tests. After undergoing a number of test, I was told they found nothing and they said it was gas and gave me meds for that. Still having problems in January, I had a colonoscopy as well as a diagnostic endoscope, again told there was nothing. Again the doctor said go home and wait and see. When I pushed the issue, I was told that I could do the pill-camera but the doctor felt it was unnecessary since the other tests were negative. I insisted that we do this test. I swallowed the pill and waited. I returned to the doctor on Wednesday, March 9,2010 to have the film reviewed. Then came Friday, March 11,2011,

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  2. 2
    • boampong
    • Experience with Colorectal (Colon) Ca...
    about 5 years ago
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    Money

    Oh No

    I have been working part time for a little more than a year. I was layoff of my regular job in Sept.,'09 and had not yet secured a new position but had a couple of possibilities. I had been making ends meet by working part time and using my savings. I had more than a year's salary saved, so I was taking my time to find the right position. Needless to say, I used about 1/2 of my saving before my diagnois but after, I went through the rest very quick. Now what? I had no icome at all for 9 months. I was able to get unemployment since I had been layed off and the doctor gave me permission to work during chemo treatment. Family members helped when they could and it allowed me to stay current with my bills. I applied for food stamps and recieved 3 months over they last year. My income was about $50-75 over the limit. Currently my unemployment payments are scheduled to end in a couple months. I have started a parttime job with a pay less than my unemployment. At least I'll have something coming in until I find something better. Until than, the only thing I can pay are absolute necessities. The side effects of chemo are still present in my hands and feet. This makes it difficult to do what I'm trained to do, I'm a chef and can't hold a knife properly or stand for more than a couple minutes at a time. In addition, I can't wear proper shoes because my feet are swollen and become more swollen as I stand or walk. I've applied for assistance in paying my mortgage assistance. When this comes through, and I'm praying it will, I'll be able to maintain everything else until I find another job.

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  3. 3
    • boampong
    • Experience with Colorectal (Colon) Ca...
    about 5 years ago
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    Surgery

    Procedure or Surgery

    I was told of my diagnose after recieving a call from my doctor at approx. 8:30am on Friday, March 11,2011. His assistant told me to get to the hospital as soon as possible. When I said I could be there by 1pm, I was told that would not do and I needed to get there NOW. I had swallowed a pill-cam about 10 days earlier and figured that was why I needed to go to the hospital. After arriving at 9am, I was admitted to the hospital hooked up to iv's, had a tube shoved down my throat and than got a visit from a surgent who finally told about why I was being admittted and his concerns of doing the surgery that day since many of the medical support he wanted had already left for the weekend. So I spent the weekend in observation, not even in a real room, waiting. Finally, Monday came and the surgery was scheduled. The Doctor again came in to tell me what he was going to do, stating that it should take about 3-4 hrs. Well, 7 hrs later, I was in recovery in ICU where I stayed for 6 days. I than spend an additional 18 days in the hospital. I was released with tubes, large open wounds from between my breast to about 3 inches below my bellybutton! Mostly because my insurance was gone. I had only been out of my bed 2 days before release. I had one week of private nurses to clean and redress my wounds. My daughter was taught how to do them. Did I mention that she hates the sight of blood, open wounds, etc. Of course, this was followed with about 3 months of recovery from the surgery prior to starting chemo.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  4. 4
    • boampong
    • Experience with Colorectal (Colon) Ca...
    about 5 years ago
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    Chemotherapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    Chemo for me was not that bad. I had also no nausea, very little diarrea or hair loss. The process took 3 days to complete and any sickness was usually gone within 3 days. The only long term effects was the progressive numbness and swelling in my hands and feet as well as being easiy tired. I still have the problems with my hands and feet and I'm told it may take up to 6 months before all the effects are over.

    Easy to Do: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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