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Miles's bowel cancer story (diagnosed at 39, QLD)

This year has been a challenge, nearly 12 months ago, I was diagnosed with bowel cancer. This was honestly the scariest moment of my life, I was told that if I didn't do something straight away, I would not live to see Xmas 2018.

At that point, I said let´s go for the surgery. We did this at the Wesley on 15th of December 2017. I had the best colorectal surgeon and I had half my bowel removed. We thought we had it all, but my surgeon, being a perfectionist, did all the pathology. On the 22nd of December 2017, he rang me and said it wasn’t all good news.

“We found cancer in your lymph and lymph nodes, you need an oncologist,” he said.

I saw one that night.

I will be honest, I fell in a heap and cried, but with the support of my wife and family I decided I would win this battle.

There were no options. We said, “Chemo it is,” and on the 10th of January 2018 I started.

Due to unforeseen circumstances, I had to stop work over the next 6 months. This ride has not been easy, but with my support group and family and friends, we took the bull by the horns. 13 treatments with a 4 day visit to hospital every fortnight due to a nasty reaction to chemo, I ended up with heart issues....

While I have this chance, I would like to thank the cancer nurses at both the Wesley and the north west private hospital because without them this victory would not be possible.

So far, I have had no visible signs or symptoms of cancer and all tests have come back negative. My journey doesn't stop here; I have plenty of follow up scans over the next several months to ensure this doesn't return.

For me, this is not just about saying I beat cancer, this is about bringing about awareness. The only symptom that showed up for me was my iron levels were low. Every test was negative until the colonoscopy. Please get yourself checked.