Since my operation in February my recovery has been mostly good. I’ll blog about what it’s like to live without a large intestine at a later date; but, for now, here are a few updates.
The annoying thing about cancer is that every ache, pain and anomaly can cause worry, not just for the patient! The first example of this was when I went for a routine opticians appointment a couple of months after my operation. The optician saw something unusual in one of my eyes and, because I was a cancer patient, I ended up being referred for a specialist examination. Thankfully, it turned out to be nothing serious.
Next up was a trip to St Mark’s for my genetic results. This one was a little complicated. I was hugely relieved to hear that I didn’t have FAP (initially feared – as mentioned in this post). However, I was formally diagnosed with Serrated Polyposis Syndrome and learned that I also have a “variant of unknown significance” in my DNA. Basically, I’m just a bit odd. My wife kindly said that this will come as no surprise to anyone that knows me! Unfortunately not much is known about this “variant” at present, but as we learn more about DNA it may become clearer.
Then came the back pain… I had really bad back ache for quite a few weeks. It seemed to be radiating from the area where I had an epidural at the time of my operation. However, because it was a few months after my operation there was a bit of concern about this, so I was sent off for a bone scan. Again, more to worry about! BUT, thankfully that came back clear and the back pain eventually got better.
The next big milestone is the six month CT scan, which is booked in for the end of August. Prayers are appreciated, as always, and I’ll aim to share the result on this blog, soon after I know it.
Finally, I’ve been asked a few times when I’ll get the ‘all clear’. Well, I’ll be scanned every six months for two years and, if those scans are all clear then the frequency will be reduced to once per year. If those are all clear then the ‘all clear’ comes after five years. Then, because of my genetic condition, I’ll have a scope inside me as a matter of routine at least once per year for the rest of my life. #joy!
I thank God for free health care and great medics working for the NHS.