In brief, the situation is: After many months of misdiagnosis, I was finally diagnosed with colon cancer … Then, in April 2014, Sandy had his first surgery at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell, a resection to remove part of his liver that had multiple tumors. Colon cancer has four stages, with stage IV as the most severe stage because it means the cancer cells have spread (metastasized) to other organs like the liver (or lungs, lymph nodes, … Once Sandy heard the plan, his spirits were immediately lifted. Home > Cancer Stories > Colorectal Cancer Stories from Patients and Survivors | The Patient Story. “For many, a liver resection can be completed within a few hours. 877-697-9355. The way the doctors cared for Sandy, he says, “I felt like they loved me.”, “The whole team was awesome,” he adds. Sandy Kyrkostas isn’t the kind of guy who lets life’s little challenges get in his way. We’re proud to offer multi-dimensional recovery programs, designed to empower our patients. A CT scan confirmed the presence of a tumor in my colon, as well as lesions on my liver. Suddenly, there was reason to have hope again. Determined to stay healthy, Sandy grows beets, spinach, and kale in his home garden. Since then, Sandy has spoken to dozens of colon cancer patients on the phone and in hospitals, many through an organization that connects patients with survivors, and he has launched a “Cancer with Sandy” Facebook support group. Once again, Dr. Shah didn’t give up — and nor did Sandy and Michelle. Subscribe to receive the Health Matters monthly newsletter of curated stories about science, care, and wellness delivered straight to your inbox. Leaving the comfort of home for treatment can be scary. “It took two to three hours to free it up.”. Sandy had 12 courses of chemotherapy — first in the hospital, then taking the rest of the infusion home in a fanny pack. Dr. Shah then administered another course of chemotherapy, and by the end of 2014, Sandy was — for the foreseeable future — finished with treatment. But in January 2014, a determined Sandy and Michelle made the journey to Manhattan to meet Dr. Manish Shah, chief of the solid tumor oncology service at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center and director of the gastrointestinal oncology program at Weill Cornell Medicine. She is in great spirits just getting weaker. Colorectal Cancer Stories Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment. Colorectal cancer is the fourth most common cancer diagnosed among adults in the U.S., and “about half of patients with colon cancer end up having metastases to the liver,” Dr. Halazun says. But in October 2018, when blood appeared in his urine, tests showed that the colon cancer was back; this time, it had spread to his bladder. Share Health Matters with your friends and family, 7 Things I Wish Everyone Knew About Lung Cancer Prevention. In January 2006, I had a total colectomy. Dr. Shah’s next step was to take his case to the hospital’s tumor board, where doctors from a variety of disciplines meet weekly to review difficult cases. As a colon cancer survivor, your story is an inspiration to all who read it, and the impact it can have is limitless. The doctors told him he didn’t — which was the last bit of good news he received for a long while. Then, in 2016, when Sandy had yet another recurrence, Dr. Shah began working with Dr. Karim J. Halazun, a liver transplant and hepatobiliary surgeon with the Liver Transplantation and Hepatobiliary Surgery program at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, who had recently joined the staff. All Hope4Cancer content is thoroughly researched and fact-checked by a team of field experts and medical professionals. Since then, Sandy has been disease-free. Hope4Cancer & The Templeton Wellness Foundation, How to Take Care of Your Emotional Health, Finding Hope in the Age of the Coronavirus: An Integrative Physician’s View, Important COVID-19 Information from Hope4Cancer, The Power of Vitamin D in Cancer Prevention and Treatment. Metastatic Cancer Patient Stories Stage 4 Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment. In January 2007 and at the age of 57, I was diagnosed with colon cancer which had spread to the liver. Hello, I need help. I have a beautiful wife and two healthy children … it seems impossible that I’m still living, but I feel like a damn lucky guy.”, Find a Doctor or call We are so sorry to hear about your cousin. While reviewing his scans that evening, Dr. Shah noticed blood clots next to Sandy’s portal vein and wrote a prescription for self-injecting blood thinners. I am so sorry for what you are going through, my prayers are with you and your Mom. The current 5-year survival rate for stage 4 colon cancer, according to the American Cancer Society, is 14%. This is Carolina, i have a brother 38 years old who was diagnosed with metastatic carcinoma and neoplasm is invading the bone and the muscle tissue fragments according to the biopsy results and many more. Sandy’s case proved to be difficult. “I told him I lived 50 miles away and asked if we could do everything that day,” Sandy recalls. Vincent: Chemo-Free Stage 4 Colon Cancer Survivor since 2006! “Dr. When I was first diagnosed it had spread from my colon to two lymph nodes and my liver. “Dr. “Dr. If you believe anything published on our site is inaccurate or outdated, kindly contact us at [email protected]. I’m inquiring to the Hope4Cancer Treatment Centers for my brother, who is 83 years old with stage 4 lung cancer. Wish you and your brother the very best, prayers for rapid healing! Prior to the surgery, my wife and I made an … “And though chemotherapy is getting better, surgery is the only curative option.”, “We push the limits and take on cases that others might not take on,” Dr. Halazun adds. We’re committed to bringing you the most accurate and up-to-date information in the cancer healing space! Earl Groce couldn’t believe it when his doctor told him that he had pancreatic cancer. We are so sorry to hear about your brother and all he is going through. All told, he had undergone a dozen major procedures, surgeries, and ablations. As a non-drinker, non-smoking fella … “They were on it,” says Sandy. It ended up taking several more, in part because scar tissue from Sandy’s previous surgeries made it more complicated to lift out his liver. Dr. Douglas Scherr, an attending urologist at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center and professor of urology and clinical director of urologic oncology at Weill Cornell Medicine, removed the tumor from Sandy’s bladder wall using a robotic procedure. Patients who are undergoing cancer treatment, and colon cancer survivors talk about diagnosis, surgery, treatment, side effects and the many ways that colon cancer has changed their lives. 5  However, a 2017 study found survival rates for those with stage 4 colon … You can also find links to our policy pages on the bottom of every page of this site. You can find more information about the cookies we use and learn how to manage them on our policies pages. Sandy has an incredible will to fight.”, Michelle grew anxious when the surgery took longer than expected, but “when they came out, the surgical team was really optimistic,” she says. I am a stage 4 colon cancer survivor, and I have been NED for three years and two months. These days, Sandy is happy to go in for his screenings, and he has become an advocate for people getting screened for colon cancer at age 45. Thank you. “Just knowing that the cancer was out of his body made me feel good.”. In recent years, the advanced screening for and removal of potentially carcinogenic polyps through proactive colonoscopies has appreciably reduced the mortality rate from colorectal cancer. At that very first meeting, Dr. Shah sprang into action, telling Sandy that he wanted him to get more scans and that he should get ready to have a port put in for chemotherapy, starting the following week. “I’m probably going to live with it for the rest of my life, so it’s part of my life.” Yet he adds, “I feel like I’ve been going through this because this is my calling. After … ... Christine sought a second opinion and learned that she had stage … On September 4, 2013, I was scheduled for surgery to remove the large tumor in my lower colon. The cancer in her colon had already metastasized — that is, spread to other … He is currently in a hospital in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Where she is at right now, your best option is to follow doctor’s recommendations – clearing the blockage is essential to start any therapeutic measures. Once Dr. Halazun had isolated the liver and could see it clearly, he realized that the entire right lobe needed to be removed. That’s why we’re committed to creating a community of hope and healing within our clinics. I was diagnosed with Colon Cancer, Stage … “Within six weeks, in a normal liver, the volume of the remaining liver doubles.”. “I’ve been living with this disease for five years,” Sandy says. Instead, Sandy went in for another ablation, and another when the lesions returned several months afterward. Agnes McKim came to Hope4Cancer at a phase in her treatment where she was being recommended highly invasive surgery as her only hope against the advanced state of disease. I thought I was getting the flu,” says Sandy, now 53. Thank you! Survivor Stories. On his ride home, Sandy received a call from Dr. Shah’s office, telling him to start the medication ASAP. Your email address will not be published. Her doctor told her that there was nothing that they could do for her. They say she is too weak for chemo and the doctors cannot clearly see where the cancer is. I am starting on mistletoe but what other protocols are best to fight colorectal cancer? My brother’s name is James Robert Garrett, we call him “Bob”. Stage IV colon cancer has a relative 5-year survival rate of about 14%. “Sometimes their cancers are just simply not operable. Mitchell had just turned 41 when she was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer in February 2005. I am 76 years old, in good health, and married to the same woman for 57 years. That’s when he discovered a tumor in my intestines so large that he couldn’t complete the procedure. In 2010, she was only given 3 weeks to live. On my Caring Bridge site, my wife captured our journey into the world of cancer and allowed many of our friends and relatives to travel by our side and make the journey a lot less lonely and perhaps even less scary. “His risk of recurrence still remains high,” Dr. Shah says, “so we’ll continue to monitor him, but he’s doing quite well.”. “They told me it was stage 4. Any alternative to chemo? We feel grateful that Hope4Cancer Treatment Centers treatments not only allowed Agnes to survive, but also thrive with an excellent quality of life. These 18 years with stage 4 colon cancer have drifted slowly by and at the same time have sped away in alarming speed. She is currently in the hospital as her intestines are blocked. With your comfort as our #1 priority, we’ve collected answers to our most commonly asked questions, as well as stories from past patients. Agnes McKim: 10 Years Stage 4 Colorectal Cancer Survivor Story Click Image to Read Letter Agnes McKim became a patient at Hope4Cancer Treatment Centers over 10 years ago when … The patient may also have undergone extensive radiation and chemotherapy as well. Importantly, cancer wasn’t found anywhere other than the liver, making treatment to Sandy’s liver a reasonable option. At that point, Dr. Halazun began operating on Sandy’s liver. “We are in this together,” Dr. Shah told Sandy. “When I woke up, the only thing I wanted to know is if I’d need a colostomy bag,” Sandy recalls. “Sometimes, my wife and I would cry at night, but during the day, I was still running around with the kids and picking them up at school. Karen. Shah was amazing from the very beginning.”. It was stage IV. How can i reach out anyone? Not willing to give up, Sandy and his wife, Michelle, saw an oncologist at another cancer center, where doctors told him to get his affairs in order. “I was so lucky to have found them. How is Hope4Cancer Protecting Patients from COVID-19 at Our Centers? Survivor Stories. My approach, and that of many of the doctors here, is that it’s hard to know what’s going to happen until you start the best treatment possible.”. Thank you for your inquiry. “If Sandy had gotten screened at 45, the cancer might have been found before it spread to his liver,” he says. Read about Agnes’ experience over the last 10 years in her own words. “I couldn’t stop shaking, even when I went back to the hotel and got under the covers. “I will get past this,” he said at the time. Ivelisse Healed Her Stage 4 Colon Cancer With Mistletoes … And he is thankful to Drs. Dear Luther, She remains an important testimonial of the benefits of natural cancer therapies that helped her survive many years beyond her expected survival. he can’t sit and can’t stand so he is been lying down for 2 months, one of his leg is shrinking as they said is getting smaller. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out. Colorectal cancer can start either in the … Your email address will not be published. I had … I want to help people, I want to give them hope. Dr. Ruth Heidrich Unreal Stage IV Breast ​Cancer ​Survivor Story Ruth Heidrich is the winner of more than 900... 2. He stayed until 7 p.m. that night.”. She refused the surgery and chose to come to Hope4Cancer Treatment Centers instead. From your first phone call to your final checkup (and beyond), we’re in your corner. “I had my chemo bag, but we were moving and shaking and going to hockey games. I had stage IV … The 5-year relative survival rate for stage 4 colon cancer that has spread to other parts of the body is about 14%. Sign up to receive monthly emails with stories about science, care, and wellness delivered straight to your inbox. Dr. Shah’s approach was to treat the cancer aggressively, knowing that if the remaining disease was limited to Sandy’s liver, there was a chance to eradicate it. But he could no longer ignore his symptoms as he sat in an ice rink in Massachusetts that December, watching his son play in a tournament. Hello Samina and thank you for reaching out. “They told me it was stage 4… Lead by Dr. Antonio Jiminez, M.D., N.D., Founder & Chief Medical Officer, as well as Dr. Subrata Chakravarty, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer, our research and science team is committed to providing objective, evidence-based material. He called his doctor, who advised him to go to a local emergency room. I have experienced a gamut of cancer … We are not able to give medical advice directly through our website, but please contact our admissions office at 888-544-5993 or go to https://hope4cancer.com/schedule-a-call/ and fill out the form and one of our admissions officers can get you a consultation with our doctor. Annie is a stage 4 cancer survivor. She said it was colon cancer. We first brought you his story two years ago, and we checked in to see how he was doing in May 2019. I wanted to make things normal for them,” he says. At Hope4Cancer, we’re dedicated to restoring hope and health for those diagnosed with cancer. Shah started making phone calls and he got me in for a brain scan, a liver scan — he got me in everywhere. “When you hear the word cancer, you just think, ‘I’m dead.’”. 877-697-9355. The doctors told him he didn’t — which was the last bit of good news he received for a long while. After the colonoscopy and further testing, the worst possible case scenario was confirmed: On my 44th birthday, September 17th, 2014, I was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer in … These days, even when things are stressful, I don’t let it bother me. “I felt numb. “He had four large tumors on that side, many around the major veins, and an additional tumor on the left side that also needed to be removed,” Dr. Halazun says. Wednesday, June 5, 2019 - 01:52 pm. “I was hopeful but still nervous.”. In 2013, an estimated 73,680 men and 69,140 women are expected to be diagnosed with the disease in the United States alone, while 26,300 men and 24,530 women are expected to die from the disease. Our safe, non-toxic treatment plans fight cancer cells while strengthening the patient, both physically and emotionally. Find a Doctor or call He had colon cancer, and it had metastasized, or spread, to his liver. 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