Eve's bowel cancer story (father diagnosed age 38, SA)

In 2005 when I was 14, my father was diagnosed with stage 3 bowel cancer.  Dad was just 38 at the time and given a low chance of surviving five years.  That was eight years ago and he is still with us, happy and healthy today.

Finding out dad had bowel cancer was a complete shock.  Following his diagnosis, he underwent surgery and half of his large intestine was removed.  He then was prescribed Xeloda as chemotherapy and, like most cancer patients, experienced a lot of difficulty with the treatment.  Over the next 12 months, he attempted other forms of therapy but due to our location in a regional area, he ended up continuing with the tablets.

It was the hardest thing our family has ever had to deal with to date but I think it gave us an experience which shaped us into more empathetic and thankful people.  At the time I found it very difficult to deal with what was happening. Living in rural South Australia, I felt completely isolated and didn’t feel there was anyone who truly understood what I was going through.  I would have loved to know a resource like this was available at the time.  I think it’s absolutely fantastic.

As you can understand, 38 is quite young for such a diagnosis.  My father was later diagnosed with Lynch Syndrome (HNPCC) so my family has since gone through genetic testing, another process which helped shape us into the people we are today.  I have inherited the genetic mutation and through all of my experiences I genuinely believe in the future I could really help people, support them and listen to them.

Banner Bowel Cancer Australia Helpline
Support Bowel Cancer Australia
Bowel Cancer Australia Bowel Cancer App