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Get your colonoscopy!
Old 10-23-2007, 11:48 AM   #1
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Get your colonoscopy!

My fit and healthy DH just had his first colonoscopy last week at age 53 - and has rectal cancer. Now we will never know if it was already present at age 50 as a polyp, in which case it could have been removed before becoming cancerous.

For the last few years DH has been busy with job changes, helping my inlaws through extended illnesses which they did not survive, and we moved out of state. He/we didn't consciously put it off, it just wasn't on our radar for a while.

I know I am preaching to the choir here regarding preventive medicine, but I couldn't pass up this opportunity to remind people to get their colonoscopy at 50. [if you have colon or rectal cancer in your immediate family, then go at 40]

Women too! Colon/rectal cancer is actually just as common in women as men.

Thanks for listening.
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:09 PM   #2
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thanks for the heads up, too PBAT. It really was not on our radar screen either, but 50 is just around the corner for us. Best wishes going out you and your husband.
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:17 PM   #3
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PBAT,

I am so sorry to hear about your DH. Thank you for posting the reminder for us all. It is so easy to put off the test until another day. Your DH will be in my thoughts and prayers. Keep us posted.
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:22 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PBAT View Post
I know I am preaching to the choir here regarding preventive medicine, but I couldn't pass up this opportunity to remind people to get their colonoscopy at 50. [if you have colon or rectal cancer in your immediate family, then go at 40]

Women too! Colon/rectal cancer is actually just as common in women as men.

Thanks for listening.
I could not agree more, prevention and early treatment can't be emphasized enough.

I had my first colonoscopy last year at 46 after my younger brother was diagnosed with colon cancer. He is now considered to be in remission. He had been ignoring symptoms for more than a year and is very lucky to be alive.

In my case, they removed one "small" polyp that proved to be benign...whew!
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Old 10-23-2007, 01:58 PM   #5
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PBAT, I am sorry to hear about your husband's health setback. The best of luck to him and to you!

Ha
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Old 10-23-2007, 02:04 PM   #6
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good luck to you both pbat and thanx for the warning. i've sort of been avoiding this since having turned 50 earlier this year. i told myself i was waiting until my new private insurance policy had been in effect for 6 months prior to any exam but now i suspect my motives ulterior to avoid an exam of the interior of my posterior.
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Old 10-23-2007, 03:03 PM   #7
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... but now i suspect my motives ulterior to avoid an exam of the interior of my posterior.
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Old 10-23-2007, 07:13 PM   #8
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I wish your spouse the best in getting cancer free. My sister-in-law, 46, was diagnosed with colon cancer and given a year to live. They are not sure yet, but think that she might have cervical cancer also. She has been having problems for a year, but did not seek medical attention, since she does not have medical insurance and very little money. She was divorced 2 yrs ago and lost her medical insurance. I had my colonoscopy at age 50, but my DH, who will be 56 in Dec, has not. He had blood work done and I insisted that he go to the doctor. His doctor discovered a heart murmur and since his cholesterol and tryglecerides were high, she decided to have EKG, stress test and echocardiogram done. She wanted to get these tests done and said that we would wait on the colonoscopy. I think that she did not want to overwhelm my spouse. He goes back 10/31 and I am going to ask her to order the colonoscopy for him right away!
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Old 10-23-2007, 07:14 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by PBAT View Post
My fit and healthy DH just had his first colonoscopy last week at age 53 - and has rectal cancer. Now we will never know if it was already present at age 50 as a polyp, in which case it could have been removed before becoming cancerous.

For the last few years DH has been busy with job changes, helping my inlaws through extended illnesses which they did not survive, and we moved out of state. He/we didn't consciously put it off, it just wasn't on our radar for a while.

I know I am preaching to the choir here regarding preventive medicine, but I couldn't pass up this opportunity to remind people to get their colonoscopy at 50. [if you have colon or rectal cancer in your immediate family, then go at 40]

Women too! Colon/rectal cancer is actually just as common in women as men.

Thanks for listening.
I'm so sorry to hear about your DH, and hope they found it early enough for a cure. I lost my brother at a young age to rectal cancer. He didn't find it through a colonoscopy, but by symptoms, and by then it was pretty late. I have a colonoscopy every 3-5 years because of the family history. Last time I went I had a virtual one thinking it was easier, but it really wasn't, since you still have to do the prep. When I went to see a gastro enterologist the other day, he said given my family history, I should have a regular one, not a virtual one, so that's what I will do next time.

Again, I hope everything turns out for the best.
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Old 10-23-2007, 07:50 PM   #10
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Best wishes to you and your husband. I had my first one last fall at the age of 52. Good results and the actual test was not bad at all. The prep work was ugly but worth the effort.
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Old 10-23-2007, 07:56 PM   #11
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I'm so sorry to hear about your husband, and thank you for taking the time to give us a real life reminder why it is so important.

I had a physical a few months back and the Doc said to come back for another exam in 2 years - at which time he will schedule a colonoscopy. (I had one 8 years ago at age 45). A few weeks later a good friend at work was diagnosed with colon cancer. I'm certainly going to have one done again.
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Old 10-23-2007, 07:59 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by PBAT View Post
My fit and healthy DH just had his first colonoscopy last week at age 53 - and has rectal cancer. Now we will never know if it was already present at age 50 as a polyp, in which case it could have been removed before becoming cancerous.

Women too! Colon/rectal cancer is actually just as common in women as men.
So sorry to hear of your hubby's illness; but don't beat yourselves up for not having the test at age 50 -- who knows how long this has been developing? Dedicate your energy now to helping him beat it...as thousands of people do each year. And know that a bunch of anonymous people here are pulling for him and you.

This year I had my first colonoscopy, too. I had put it off past my 50th birthday only because I thought it was too "yucky" of a test to even think about. I was wrong. Yes, the prep was a bit of a bother, having to stay close to home for an afternoon, but the test itself was nothing to be afraid of -- as a matter of fact, when I woke up I thought I hadn't had the test yet.
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Old 10-24-2007, 10:24 AM   #13
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...........This year I had my first colonoscopy, too. I had put it off past my 50th birthday only because I thought it was too "yucky" of a test to even think about. I was wrong. Yes, the prep was a bit of a bother, having to stay close to home for an afternoon, but the test itself was nothing to be afraid of -- as a matter of fact, when I woke up I thought I hadn't had the test yet.
Ditto. The prep is the worst part, but the security of knowing you are OK is well worth it.
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Old 10-24-2007, 01:17 PM   #14
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We are still in the process of getting all the diagnostic tests done, but so far it appears that it hasn't spread to any other organs/tissues, and isn't in the lymph nodes. That is quite a relief!

Thanks for all the well wishes.
Brenda
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Get your colonoscopy!
Old 10-24-2007, 02:59 PM   #15
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Get your colonoscopy!

As travelover mentioned the prep is the worst part although not bad. My tip is keep the brew they give you very cold and drink it fast. Oh, and have a good book or movie that you can pause and keep yourself busy between sessions.
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Old 10-24-2007, 03:36 PM   #16
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Brenda/PBAT, best wishes to you and your husband. I think it's wonderful that you went out of your way during such a stressful time to post this, thus reaching out to others and possibly saving a life!

Both my parents had colon cancer (father just polyps that were removed successfully, mother died from it, but she was 89 and didn't want any treatment), so I get colonoscopies every three years. Not fun, but essential.
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Cancer
Old 10-24-2007, 04:47 PM   #17
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Cancer

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I could not agree more, prevention and early treatment can't be emphasized enough.

I had my first colonoscopy last year at 46 after my younger brother was diagnosed with colon cancer. He is now considered to be in remission. He had been ignoring symptoms for more than a year and is very lucky to be alive.

In my case, they removed one "small" polyp that proved to be benign...whew!
Not to get too graphic, but what were so of the symptoms?
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Colon cancer
Old 10-24-2007, 04:51 PM   #18
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Colon cancer

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Originally Posted by SoonToRetire View Post
I'm so sorry to hear about your DH, and hope they found it early enough for a cure. I lost my brother at a young age to rectal cancer. He didn't find it through a colonoscopy, but by symptoms, and by then it was pretty late. I have a colonoscopy every 3-5 years because of the family history. Last time I went I had a virtual one thinking it was easier, but it really wasn't, since you still have to do the prep. When I went to see a gastro enterologist the other day, he said given my family history, I should have a regular one, not a virtual one, so that's what I will do next time.

Again, I hope everything turns out for the best.
I asked one of the other posters so if either one answers, thanks. What were some of the symptoms that your brother had.I am sorry for your loss.
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Old 10-24-2007, 05:01 PM   #19
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Sorry to hear about your DHs findings.
I had my 1st colonoscopy at age 50 and they found non-cancerous polyps. They were removed. I just had my 2nd colonoscopy (5ish years later) as scheduled. No new polyps.
It is TRUE, the test is much less 'troublesome' then the prep ... I would suggest that if you do the prep, you ask about the 2 types. I don't remember the 'names', but one type was drinking less 'stuff', but side effects could be liver problems. The other type is to drink a gallon of 'posterier interior' emptying solution. ARRGGGGGHHHH. but at least I can save my liver damage for more enjoyable things like 18 year old single malt scotch.
My DW had her 1st colonoscopy when I had my 1st one too and they found nothing (a good thing). She is scheduled for a retest in 5 more years (when I get my 3rd).
The interesting thing is that my health insurance paid for 100% as part of my physicals. The cost was 'non-trivial', so it must save the insurance company a whole bunch to find the cancer early rather than treat it in later stages. ... not to mention I would rather NOT HAVE IT.
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Old 10-24-2007, 05:05 PM   #20
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I've had three colonoscopys since I turned 50, and I'm 62 now.Found and removed polyps on both of the first ones. Last one was clear, but you can bet I'll continue to have them on a regular basis. If I hadn't started, I'd probably be ill with colon cancer by now. If you haven't had one, and you're age appropriate, schedule one now! Waiting could be a disaster.

PBAT, I'm sorry for your situation, and wish your husband the best....
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