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Jul 11, 2018
11:32:46am
Division Bell Contributor
Since we're talking about checkups... HCBW's best friend was just diagnosed with
stage 4 breast cancer. She kinda ignored the signs, now she's only got a 20% chance of survival and she's quite young (early 50's). I can't believe how quickly things went from "a little discomfort" to a fight for her life.

As long as I'm on a soapbox, please don't delay getting a colonoscopy. For those with no family history, it usually starts at age 50. For those with a family history of colon cancer, the screenings start at age 40 (they have a 7x chance of getting it over those with no family history).

The preparation is no fun, but the procedure is painless (they put you under sedation for the procedure) and it only needs to be done every few years (unless they find polyps, in which case they may have you come back every other year). While the procedure is painless, actual colon cancer is excruciating... my mom died from it and it was absolute hell for 18 months.

For a humorous look at it, here's Dave Barry's take (yes, it's been posted here many times but it's worth a re-read):
https://www.miamiherald.com/living/liv-columns-blogs/dave-barry/article1928847.html

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On a side note: Mom and Dad were on a mission in Manchester, England. She went to the doctor a number of times over the course of 6-7 months for increasing discomfort and pain. Each time, they told her that it was just indigestion or gas. She eventually called a family friend (a cancer surgeon in SLC) who asked her a few questions, the told her to get on the next plane home because she had advanced colon cancer and needed immediate treatment if she was to have any chance at beating it. Not a single UK doctor diagnosed it. When she told them what the SLC oncological surgeon said, they scheduled her to come in 6 months later for a test to see if she had cancer. She flew out to America that evening (IIRC) and was operated on within 48 hours of arrival, then started radiation therapy after a little while. I still think that the blatant incompetence of the UK doctors cost my mother her life... Socialized medicine sucks.

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