Blog 196 Wednesday 2nd March 2016 -The End -

I have enjoyed watching the blog "Cluster Map" fill up with visits from all around the world, unfortunately it was re-set to zero by whoever in the cyber community. I think I had reached about 70 different countries and sincerely hope my ramblings made a difference to someone. Apparently I am no longer "Living with Bowel Cancer" so have decided to bring my blog to a close.........

I am pleased to say the recent Colonoscopy I have had was clear.

My consultant Mr El-Rabaa has discharged me from his care and I have been completely discharged from the care and surveillance regime of the hospital. It will be strange not waiting for the various appointments to arrive and the subsequent follow ups in the out-patients department. I can't help thinking of the people I've met along the way..........

Back in 2008/2009 when my symptoms were at their worst, (change of bowel habits - diarrhoea) and after all the normal remedies had not worked, my wife Wendy nagged me and nagged and nagged  to go back  to the doctor for a third time. The first time I was told I had IBS Irritable Bowel Syndrome
The second time at the doctors he again diagnosed Irritable Bowel Syndrome and said "
"The symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can often be managed by changing your diet and lifestyle, and understanding the nature of the condition." so I got all the information I needed to manage the IBS symptoms.

When my diarrhoea became worst the nagging from my wife started again now we were living in Australia and I sought a second opinion.......

"Advanced Bowel Cancer"............ was the new diagnosis.

The original diagnosis of IBS I believe, was clouded by profiling, I was too young to fit the profile of a bowel cancer sufferer. Thankfully Bowel Cancer UK and other charities have worked tirelessly in their campaigns to change this profile and doctors are looking at Bowel Cancer a lot differently nowadays. See Bowel Cancer UK :   NEVER TOO YOUNG CAMPAIGN

Symptoms of bowel cancer

The symptoms of bowel (colorectal) cancer can be:
  • Bleeding from your bottom and/or blood in your poo
  • A change in bowel habit lasting for 3 weeks or more especially to looser or runny poo
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Extreme tiredness for no obvious reason
  • A pain or lump in your tummy
You might experience one, some, all of the above or no symptoms at all. Remember most symptoms will not be bowel cancer.

I am extremely thankful for my additional time on this earth  and my wife who, without her nagging, I'm sure this blog would have ended differently.

John Naisbit


Blog 195 Tuesday 26th January 2016

Following on from the upper bowel blockage that suddenly caught me out last August 2015 my consultant Mr Saleem El - Rabaa thought it may be a good idea for me to undergo a further colonoscopy  Anyone that has followed my blog will know that my original colonoscopy was in 2009. This procedure saved my life, It identified I was suffering advanced bowel cancer. A video diary was taken of this procedure by the consultant which I later posted on this blog. I have an appointment in the near future at Kettering for a further colonoscopy. Anyone that has taken to look on-line for advice or information on colonoscopy's and may have stumbled upon this blog, I can assure you in my experience, the patient is mildly sedated asked to lay in the foetal position  and feels very little discomfort. All very worth it if it saves your life - Normally the consultant tells you straight away if everything is fine or within 10 days if any biopsy's are taken. You know your body if something is not right GET IT CHECKED OUT It may be nothing ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

  • A colonoscopy allows your doctor to see inside your colon and rectum. This test allows your doctor to detect inflamed tissue, ulcers or unusual growths which may be the beginnings of cancer. A colonoscopy is used to diagnosis the reason for changes in your bowel movements, abdominal pain, rectal bleeding or unexplained weight loss. A colonoscopy is an outpatient procedure, and recovery is usually quick.


  • During the colonoscopy, your doctor may decide to remove a small sample of tissue for testing. This removal of tissue is called a biopsy. Tissue removed can be viewed under a microscope and tested for any signs of disease. Testing tissue removed during a biopsy will tell your doctor what illness may be causing your symptoms.


  • Tissue removed during a biopsy may reveal cancerous cells. This tissue may come from abnormal growths like polyps and tumors or from inflamed lining tissue. Early detection of colorectal cancer helps improve your chances of recovery. Cancerous cells form when normal cells mutate and grow uncontrolled. A biopsy can help detect cancerous cells before they have grown into tumors and created blockages in the colon.


  • Polyps are growths that stick out from the lining of your colon or rectum. Polyps can be the beginning of cancer. Polyps are precancerous growths that can increase your risk of developing cancer. During a colonoscopy your doctor will remove any polyps found. Removing polyps can help prevent your from developing cancer.


  • When tissue becomes infected your body's immune systems fights back by sending white blood cells to the infected area. As your white blood cells collect in the area pus begin to form. A build up of fluid, live and dead white blood cells, dead tissue and bacteria can form. This abscess can cause pain, changes to your bowel movements and bleeding. Infected tissue removed during a biopsy can be tested to determine what is causing the abscess. Most abscesses are treated with antibiotics to stop the infection.

Please read more at Bowel Cancer UK

Blog 194 Tuesday 25th August 2015

In 2009 Whilst living in Australia I had my original bowel operation. Bowel Cancer had taken hold in the lower bowel. The bowel was operated on via a caesarean type incision in the lower abdomen and 29 cm of colon were removed. And that is the end of that ........................or so I thought.

On Wednesday 12th August 2015 after feeling considerably unwell,  I suddenly felt waves of  severe abdominal pains followed by vomiting. The pain was so bad my wife Wendy called the Paramedics and after Morphine injections by the ambulance crew I  was taken to A&E, I was once again hooked up to drips of saline and pain relief, via cannulas. After several tests including CT scan, I found myself on the surgical ward. I have been diagnosed with Upper Bowel Blockage possibly caused by Abdominal Adhesions (Scar Tissue)

Abdominal Adhesions

Read More
"Abdominal adhesions can kink, twist, or pull the intestines out of place, causing an intestinal obstruction. An intestinal obstruction partially or completely restricts the movement of food or stool through the intestines. A complete intestinal obstruction is life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention and often surgery"

It was explained to me that although the blockage was not anywhere near the site of the original operation the adhesions can in fact move and knit together in other parts of the bowel.

On top of that, during a CT Scan they also discovered a Hernia where part of my bowel had pushed through the adjoining wall of my abdomen.  OOOHHH JUST GREAT !!!!! after a seven hour operation, and three days in the Intensive Care Unit, I was sent back to the wards. I am now at home in considerable pain, receiving daily attention of the community nurses, dressing a very large "L" shape incision that tracks down and across my abdomen. For the next month, I am also receiving two injections of Heparin into my stomach, administered by my wife to stop blood clots.

On 28th August 2015 I should have the many clips removed that are currently holding my abdomen together.   

Blog 193 Wednesday 15th July 2015

Yes its been a while,.................................... after my scan last March, I had a severe reaction to the "contrast" dye radiologists use :-

  Iodine–containing contrast medium (often just referred to as “contrast”, “contrast medium”, "dye", or "X-ray dye", even though it is clear and colourless) is a chemical substance used in medical X-ray imaging to show what is happening inside hollow parts of the body (like blood vessels, the stomach, bowel, or even the fluid around the spinal cord). When injected into a blood vessel, which can be either an artery or a vein, it not only shows the inside of the blood vessel on the image or picture but it can give information about how the organs supplied by that blood vessel are working. Good examples of this are the kidneys, brain and lungs............

The "Contrast" is injected automatically after the first scan to give the contrasting view to the radiologists. I have quite often had side-effects such as  the feeling of nausea when the contrast is injected (but never been sick) and also the warm feeling around the groin area as if wetting oneself / passing urine. These I have learnt to cope with over the years but this time I suddenly got a severe headache and became very sensitive to light (photophobic) , I felt very sick, my temperature climbed and I quickly developed flu like symptoms. This all happened within a couple of hours. My GP sent me immediately to A & E for observation

The link above gives all relevant information about possible side effects of the "contrast".. If you have followed me on this blog you will know I tend to get quite severe reactions/side effects when it comes to injected chemicals (chemotherapy, morphine etc) so if you are heading for a scan with "contrast" for whatever reason, don't worry you probably won't be effected like me its less than 1:25000 probability.  

I have always tried to raise awareness of Bowel Cancer and the great work that Bowel Cancer UK does
ORDER FREE AWARENESS MATERIAL HERE  Posters and great information for your work place or community please use it and spread the word, You may save someone's life  

Hey guys happy holidays I'm off to Cyprus!!     

Blog 192 Monday 9th March 2015

On reading my previous post, I appear to be feeling quite abandoned after all the medical interventions of the previous few years, then virtually nothing. I did not need to feel abandoned as it was not long before the appointments started again. Just when I felt anxious about things, a further appointment has arrived. A CT scan for abdomen and chest and blood tests this week with  a follow up appointment by my Oncologist next week.

I still read with dismay when someone presents themselves at a doctors or are admitted to a hospital and it's already too late a diagnosis of terminal cancer is recorded. Did these people not feel any difference in their body? did they just ignore? were they too worried or frightened?

Come on, you know your body if you feel something is not quite right, get it checked out, it will probably be nothing but at least you know. Don't put off getting things checked like bleeding from your bottom or blood in your poo. You may be feeling tired all the time for no apparent reason or feel bloated all the time. Your bowel habits may change for three weeks or more, get it checked, its probably nothing but get it checked! Yes it may be embarrassing but like me if you do discover there is something more sinister I can assure you you will never feel embarrassed at showing the world your backside again or anything else come to that.

Visit bowel cancer UK or equivalent in your country to volunteer to spread the word a diagnosis early gives a far better chance of survival or will seriously extend the duration of life.  

Blog 191 Sunday 14th December 2014

Following the news of being three years clear of cancer, the medical surveillance regime of scans, blood tests and colonoscopy has all but disappeared. I no longer get appointments after appointments dropping on the door mat or thankfully having the agonising wait for results. I'm no longer visiting the various health professionals that I have come to know so well......... Its all a bit surreal really, If it wasn't for the scars evident all over my back and torso, its like that was a different person a different life.

I feel now, as if I've entered a new faze, that I'm starting a new chapter. I am extremely thankful, for the obvious extension to my life as a result of the medically hectic previous five years. I am now aiming for the next hurdle of being five years clear of cancer. I will still be below the age of participation in the UK government cancer tests screening  that my previous blog post informed about, but by then if nothing has happened to me I probably won't give cancer a second thought. (He says bravely now).

Since being given the all clear in September this year I have come out of retirement and returned to work. It didn't take long, a few applications, a couple of  interviews and I'm back full time in facilities management as a site manager in Peterborough.

This will probably be my last post for 2014. I'm really looking forward to 2015 and would like to wish all my followers and friends a fantastic but relaxing Christmas and a very healthy and prosperous New Year.



Blog 190 Tuesday 23rd September 2014

My Oncologist has given me the good news that my recent CT Scan was clear. Now, three years clear of cancer, I dare to dream of the next hurdle being five years. It could of been very different had the bowel cancer not been discovered when it was. On my original diagnosis and subsequent operation a CT scan then, revealed that the cancer had already spread to my lungs which put me into an advanced category.

By getting myself checked out, I seriously extended my life. A change in bowel habit (diahorrea) that lasted for longer than a few weeks was my reason to get checked by my doctor.

I have previously mentioned that Bowel Cancer can and does effect younger persons and have previously included all the symptoms to look out for.

At 60 years, If you live in England, Wales or Northern Island, (50 years if you live in Scotland)  other countries have screening from similar ages, BOWEL CANCER SCREENING comes into effect...............................,

If you are registered with a GP and eligible for bowel cancer screening, you will receive a letter and a leaflet explaining the home testing kit prior to receiving the kit itself. These will be sent to where you live. If you receive a kit please please please use it and send it back !! too many people don't.

The home testing kit tests for faecal occult blood (hidden blood in poo). It does not diagnose bowel cancer. This was the test used by my doctor in Australia  that finally gave rise to suspicion of bowel cancer in my case.


Blog 189 Friday 29th August 2014

My consultation with Richard Stacey at the John Radcliffe in Oxford went well and the MRI showed that the Thoracic Laminectomy last year, was a complete success. Last Tuesday I attended Northampton Hospital and completed the next round of CT Scans and CEA blood test (Carcinoembryonic Antigen (CEA) tumor marker test) I will get the results next week when I attend Oncologist  Craig Macmillan consultation fingers crossed please!!!

Yesterday was a great day, I attended Bowel Cancer UK head office in London SW1 where I met CEO Deborah Alsina and Andrew Jazaerli Senior Policy Officer. I have often blogged about the great work that is done by  Bowel Cancer UK staff and their many volunteers.

I was asked by Andrew and Deborah to take part in a focus group concerning the
research they are conducting into advanced disease.  The aim of the project is to investigate bowel cancer patients (and their families) experiences of treatment and care to identify both best practice and gaps in provision. Bowel Cancer UK  hope to use the information to influence government and healthcare commissioners, and ultimately improve patient care.

The Time for Guts Campaign is about saving lives from advanced bowel cancer.

It was also my pleasure to meet John Anton and Eleanor Harwood both have been through similar experiences as I and both are avid campaigners for Bowel Cancer UK

Symptoms of bowel cancer

The symptoms of bowel (colorectal) cancer can be:
  • Bleeding from your bottom and/or blood in your poo
  • A change in bowel habit lasting for 3 weeks or more especially to looser or runny poo
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Extreme tiredness for no obvious reason
  • A pain or lump in your tummy
You might experience one, some, all of the above or no symptoms at all. Remember most symptoms will not be bowel cancer.

If you are worried about any symptoms that you think might be caused by bowel cancer, make an appointment with your doctor.

Just remember you'll not be wasting anyone's time by getting checked out. If it isn't serious, you'll put your mind at rest. 

Early detection can make all the difference.

 Over 90% who are diagnosed at the earliest stage are successfully treated. So a trip to your doctor could save your life.


Blog 188 Thursday 24th July 2014

It's been a while since my last post no apologies just being lazy. I've been back and forward to Northampton hospital for various tests all of which have proved OK. Next week Monday, I have to attend the John Radcliffe hospital in Oxfordshire for an MRI scan on my spine following the Thoracic Laminectomy last year, just checking all is well there and nothing else has invading my spine. August brings on the next CT scan on abdomen chest etc then Oncologist visit. If all is OK that will be Three years clear of cancer, it's the first rung on the ladder, the first step that allows the cancer sufferer to "dream" of the second step being five years clear.

I took the opportunity in January this year to take part in an Advanced Disease Research project being run by Bowel Cancer UK CEO Deborah Alsina and Senior Policy Officer Andrew Jazaerli the results of the campaign will be released soon  including policy briefing on main issues found by their research.

Blog 187 Wednesday 14th May 2014

Quite disconcerting really, laying on my front looking at the stainless steel trolley with all the implements that are to be used to remove the carcinoma on my back. Not to mention the implement that resembled a soldering iron!! I was informed by the doctor it is used to cauterise the blood vessels, thanks for that. All in all, I am very glad that it is only the minor surgery that the patient is awake for. The staff within the very small room were very good at keeping me talking and informing what was going on Another scar to be added to the patchwork on my back. An yet another wait for the results

Blog 186 Wednesday 16th April 2014

I am very sad to report that my friend Michael passed away in late February this year, our heart felt condolences go out to Jean, Michael's wife and Louise his daughter from both Wendy and I.

I have previously blogged about my friend Michael who was undergoing the same lung operation as me at the Spire hospital in Leicester. Michael was the first bowel cancer patient that I had met to actually speak to and  discuss things with, since my diagnosis.

Michael and I met in the HDU (High Dependency Unit) of the Leicester Spire hospital . When I say met, we were both in a lot of pain and recovering from our lung surgery and both of us had tubes and all sorts of paraphernalia  attached to our bodies, but Michael managed to chat and make me laugh. 

On being discharged, we kept in contact via telephone and I met Michael and Jean again during a consultants follow up visit at the Spire, it was great to see Michael and Jean again.

Michael was such an inspiration to me, and  had a terrific sense of humour, he kept my spirits up even when in pain in the HDU and feeling that I had been run over by a bus!!

In order to write this blog today I wanted to know how many times I had mentioned Michael within its content the following blog posts tell the story  but blog 110 sums it up. 

Blog 17
Blog 22
Blog 27
Blog 85
Blog 100
Blog 110
Blog 111

Michael also via this blog commented on blog 18 post I had written

Michael wrote ...............Good to speak to you today John, hope all went well with your visit to the hospital this afternoon. I shall be back at the Spires for more torture tomorrow!!! Will speak to you soon.
Michael. (September 5, 2011 at 7:02 pm)

I feel the above shows how much of an inspiration you were to me Michael on my journey thank you so much
John Naisbit

Blog 185 Thursday 27th March 2014

Once again lots of visits from across South America, Ola Brasil !!

I was sent to the Dermatology department Kettering hospital, after the discovery of a strange looking mark on my back.  I was seen by consultant dermatologist Dr Olivia Stevenson she very quickly gave the diagnosis of a Basal Cell Carcinoma or BCC

A basal cell carcinoma is a type of skin cancer. There are two main types of skin cancer; melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer. BCC is a non-melanoma skin cancer and is the most common type.

The commonest cause of a BCC is too much exposure to Ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun. A BCC can be cured in almost every case and is not infectious. Treatment becomes more complicated if the BCC has been neglected for a very long time or if they are in an awkward place such as near the eye, nose or ear.

As well as the diagnosis Dr Stevenson gave me a right good telling off  as apparently I had neglected my skin over the years too much unprotected sun in South Africa and Australia no doubt but also she insisted I needed to "moisturise"   MMmmmmmmmm.................never done that......anyway after my diagnosis and rebuke, I was given the good news the BCC is to be surgically removed !! and the really good on my birthday!!!!! apparently the only date available.

Trust me you do not want to say to the NHS "That date is not convenient" best you wait a further three months, at worst you may get "lost" in the system. Oh well its only a local anesthetic and I should be out in time for the usual rendition of `Happy Birthday'

Blog 184 Monday 10th March 2014

Well yet another setback. On my last blog post I gave the good news of the "All Clear" but my Oncologist had noticed an unusual looking mark on my back. This mark I hasten to add was of concern to my wife Wendy for some time, but us guys think we know the best don't we? .............I have an appointment this Friday  for a skin cancer specialist to verify one way or the other what this unusual mark is ..... I'm certain it cannot be linked to bowel cancer... Maybe all those years under the South African and Australian sun has taken its toll on my skin we shall see. My oncologist and my GP did not give any reassurance when I asked if it was skin cancer.....another fast track referral to be seen within a week, great service by the NHS but crap deal. I'm now seriously considering whether I  want any further ops or procedures but I still cling on to Hope .......some don't have that luxury, I will be there! 

Blog 183 Tuesday 25th February 2014

All the waiting and worrying was ended late yesterday with my six monthly trip to the Oncologist in Northampton. The CT scan and recent tests have all come back clear.. my next round is in September.

If all is well in September I would have been "clear" for 3 years, 5 years clear is the milestone to head for before celebrating but I am extremely thankful for this small mercy   

Blog 182 Friday 31st January 2014

It was a year ago that the horse meat scandal hit the UK and Europe. Criminals were  adding horse meat to the food chain and passing it off as beef or other meat products. Today I was speaking to  Andrew Jazaerli, the  Senior Policy Officer of Bowel Cancer UK and the conversation reminded me of my blog post at that time.

I was amazed how fast the news of the scandal spread....It was "Top of the mind awareness" Millions of people thought of how it may have affected them..............


The truth of the matter is that generally we do not consider bowel cancer or any other cancer for that matter,until it actually effects us, a family member or friend. Over 40,000 men and women are diagnosed with bowel cancer in the UK every year, making it the third most common cancer; that's someone every 15 minutes.

Causes & Risks

Although the exact cause of bowel cancer is unknown, there are certain factors that may increase your risk. In the UK, around 95% of cases occur in people over the age of 50. (I was 45) People with a mother, father, brother, sister, or child with bowel cancer may be considered for further testing. An inactive lifestyle and a poor diet may increase the risk of bowel cancer. A high intake of red and processed meat, smoking and excess alcohol may also  increase the risk

For further information and support please call the Bowel Cancer UK Information and Support Service on 0800 8 40 35 40 or email


Blog 181 Wednesday 8th January 2014


Not long into the new year and the first round of cancer surveillance appointment letters have arrived !!

I will be seeing the urology consultant at the end of January. I have a chest/abdomen CT Scan during February and an Oncology appointment at the end of February.  I have often referred to this particular time as the waiting game. It really doesn't get any easier, waiting for the appointments..........and then waiting for the results, but it sure focuses your mind on what is actually important in life.  An interesting article I read in "The Lancet" you can make up your own mind, .........................

The Rhetoric of Cancer
“For 40 years the language of warfare has dominated cancer discourse”, explains Andrew Graystone in an essay complementing his radio documentary The Rhetoric of Cancer . “Today it's commonplace to speak about battling cancer, fighting cancer, even kicking cancer.

Oncologists are painted as heroic warriors, the SAS of the medical world—sometimes fighting hand to hand with scalpels, sometimes using lasers, ray guns, and chemical weapons.”

When Andrew Graystone was diagnosed with cancer three years ago, he soon realised that the language commonly employed to approach this disease revolves around military metaphors. He writes: "The language of war dominates cancer discourse, so whether we want to fight or not, people with cancer are conscripted into a battle against the self. Our bodies made into war zones, with cancer as the enemy, medical professionals as infallible heroes, and treatments of search-and-destroy by any means possible."

In an attempt to find language which feels more appropriate for him, Andrew visits the Christie Hospital in Manchester to meet Macmillan consultant in palliative care and oncology Dr Wendy Makin. They discuss the language that clinicians choose and the words that patients bring to the consulting room themselves. Also to Natasha Hill, director of brand and strategic marketing at Cancer Research UK about the rhetoric employed in advertising campaigns. He discusses the language employed at research level with Michael Overduin, professor at the school of Cancer Sciences at Birmingham University. Andrew also meets with Jim Cotter,
a priest and writer who has leukaemia. And he shares his findings with theologian Dr Paula Gooder who has a special interest in contemporary beliefs about our relationships with our bodies, illness and death.

Andrew says: "If I battle my cancer I’m putting myself in conflict against myself . Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to have cancer, but I warn you that when I die, if any one says that I have lost my battle against cancer, I will personally come back and haunt them.
Andrew Graystone. A graduate in theology, has extensive experience as a media professional, having worked for BBC Religion for over a decade as a producer and Development Executive. He has produced numerous TV and radio programmes. He has also worked as a radio and TV producer in the independent sector. He is a regular presenter of Radio 4's Daily Service and Sunday Worship. He lectures at universities and theological colleges, and trains and advises christian groups on how best to engage with the fast-changing media environment. Andrew is a licensed minister of the Church of the Nazarene.

When Andrew Graystone was diagnosed with cancer three years ago, he soon realised that the language commonly employed to approach this disease revolves around military metaphors. He writes: "The language of war dominates cancer discourse, so whether we want to fight or not, people with cancer are conscripted into a battle against the self. Our bodies made into war zones, with cancer as the enemy, medical professionals as infallible heroes, and treatments of search-and-destroy... 6 Show more

Blog 180 Tuesday 31st December 2013

To all my friends and followers my favourite new years eve text...........

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2014 !!!   

Blog 179 Wednesday 11th December 2013

This is unlike any other blog post I have completed. I have often made reference to the medical procedure that saved............... or seriously extended my life......."The Colonoscopy".  this was reported via  Blog One The Beginning

The Colonoscopy or fibreoptic colonoscopy with polypectomy is fully described on the link but I would like to document the actual procedure performed on me by Dr Miros in Australia. I must warn viewers that this procedure is not for the faint hearted and shows the actual procedure performed on my bowel, whilst I was under sedation. This first video, shows a polyp being identified, removed and skin cauterised. This and other Polyps turned out to be cancerous.

You have been warned !!!

In a separate video to be posted, you will also see the extent of the cancerous growth which was left well alone by Dr Miros save for a few "Pokes" and injection of dye to identify the position for the bowel surgeon. Hopefully the further video will be posted soon !!!

Blog 178 Monday 11th November 2013

When I first started this blog I was very much in the unknown, I wanted to share my experiences with persons effected by bowel cancer and their carers. Persons that were just embarking on their own cancer journeys. I suppose I just wanted to give a `heads up' of what to possibly expect, to try to make the way slightly easier for them.

There were many times that I was preoccupied with negative thoughts.....................I thought cancer was an imminent death sentence...........mentally, I gave myself two years at the most. When the cancer attacked my lungs for a second time I was already preparing myself not to see another Christmas with my family.................................. other thoughts that plagued me were that the chemotherapy would make me violently sick and all my hair would fall out ..........well yes, this does happen, but again in my case, I had very bad side effects due to the chemo,  but these were kept to a minimum by my oncologist and nurses and I didn't loose any hair!!

Truth is.. I was diagnosed in 2009 at an advanced stage of bowel cancer. At the present time I feel great! and extremely lucky that all recent tests (and recent operation) have shown clear of cancer.

I suppose what I'm trying to say to persons and loved ones who may have recently embarked on a similar cancer journey to mine, all is not lost on hearing the word, cancer............ mentally, grab hold of a future intention and never let it go  ............mine is "to be at my daughters wedding"  she's only eleven years old,  just started secondary school and the youngest of my children (no pressure my darling)..................,  I will be there..     

Blog 177 Monday 21st October 2013

From the beginning of last week It is my daughters school half term holiday break, her school is on half term break sooner than most others, because her schools summer break is two weeks shorter and re-convenes half way through August unlike most. It is a time that I try and get her out doing things. As we didn't have a holiday away this year due to my operations I booked Wendy got a few days off,  so we headed South to Portugal  for blue skies and sunshine. Albefuira to be exact "Travel Insurance" I hear you say....... "yes very important"...................only nobody would insure me.

As long as you mention "Cancer" on any quotation or proposal the insurance company's do not want to know...........I'm not talking they won't insure for pre-existing conditions....oh no they won't insure at all!!!!!........................for anything ..............not even a .........................airplane delay or the usual holiday mishap ..

I'm sure other cancer sufferers and survivors have been in the same situation and did exactly what I did and trolled through the various cancer forums ........some very helpful information, but unless its very up to date the good information that was, has been changed or no longer exists.  Ha ha I checked through my existing house insurance and found it covers annually for up to 60 days away from our shores and covers all the normal holiday stuff delays to airplane cancellation due to emergency's loss of cameras etc etc

Pre - existing conditions are not covered ...............but I wouldn't expect it to be or did I want it to be to anyone else out there who suddenly finds out the harsh reality of being uninsurable for holiday bookings / flights etc you may well be already insured and didn't know it. Check your house insurance. For a £35 excess, I'm totally covered for my holiday ...............................well not totally, I'm not covered for Cancer...............??          

Blog 176 Monday 7th October 2013

The Thoracic Laminectomy I had in July this year to remove, what was believed to be a tumour on my spinal cord, in fact turned out to be a large benign cyst. The cyst was pressing on my spinal cord and giving all sorts of problems with my legs, ie  (numbness from my knees to my hips, severe cramping and severe sciatica type pain across my buttocks and into my legs.) Due to my previous encounters with Bowel Cancer it was decided to investigate further and resulted in a complex operation called a Thoracic Laminectomy where parts of  the spine are removed to get to the problem. This operation was and still is incredibly painful.

As usual with most invasive surgery I now have complete numbness across my middle back, which just adds to the numbness of my sides following the double lung surgery last year. The pain I am currently experiencing is due to the surgery on the Spinous process and muscles to get to the Cyst and after all the surgery it was discussed that this had nothing to do with my bowel cancer. I continue to be scanned and have regular blood tests. In order to eleviate the pain and give my back some support, Wendy trolled through the Internet to find a suitable back brace. A useful back brace was found and does give some relief whilst walking and standing for any length of time. This brace was discovered and sent from China but beware the Chinese XXL or double extra large is not quite what you expect !!!

Anatomy of the spine  Go !!

Blog 175 Thursday 19th September 2013

Every so often I get several "Hits" on this blog from different areas of the same country all within the space of a few days.

I've had a few visits from around America recently Hi you guys !! ...I see even Meryl Streep is getting involved in spreading the word about Colon Cancer in America. in the

Screen for Life: National Colorectal Cancer Action Campaign

Back to the UK .........................I am truly amazed that so many people are out there spreading the word about Colon/Bowel Cancer and so much good information is on the Web. People on social media sites all raising cash and awareness for the various charities and yet there are still people who don't know the symptoms of Bowel Cancer and still people turning up at A &E for some emergency treatment only to be told they are in the latter stages of bowel cancer.

Cancer Research UK has some great information and only a click away

Please also visit Bowel Cancer UK 

The symptoms of bowel (colorectal) cancer can be:
  • Bleeding from your bottom and/or blood in your poo
  • A change in bowel habit lasting for 3 weeks or more especially to looser or runny poo
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Extreme tiredness for no obvious reason
  • A pain or lump in your tummy
You might experience one, some, all of the above or no symptoms at all. Remember most symptoms will not be bowel cancer. 

Blog 174 Monday 16th September 2013

I am extremely proud of  my three sons Jonathan, Matthew and Jarrod and their achievements.

So it was no surprise when Jarrod my youngest, decided to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support via the "Go Sober for October" campaign in the memory of his mother Janice who lost the battle against cancer last year ...................................

"Doing this for my mother, Janice Nash, I love you and miss you so much"
"Janice Nash passed away peacefully at Katharine House Hospice, Adderbury, in the early hours of Thursday 19th January 2012. Her life cut short by illness, at the young age of 56. She will be sadly missed by Paul her Husband and her three boys, her family, friends and work colleagues. Her life was celebrated at St Mary's Church in Lower Heyford on Thursday 26th January.My dad at the same time had been battling bowel cancer."

Please help Jarrod by visiting his profile page and make a donation to Macmillan Cancer Support visit :-

On Thursday 19th January 2012 I wrote on this Blog ....................................."

At 04.15 today Janice passed former wife of fifteen years and fantastic mother to my three sons, has been overwhelmed by cancer, as much as this was expected it is a shock when the news comes of a close friend taken this way. My thoughts are for my sons....................and Janice, who now rests in peace after this battle...................." That post was the hardest blog post I have ever had to write.

At the time of Janice's passing I was going through Chemotherapy. Macmillan Cancer support were there for me when I needed them Macmillan Cancer Support

Blog 173 Friday 23rd August 2013

It's been almost a month since my last post. During this month I have been in severe pain only relieved by regular strong pain killers & laying flat out. The vast array of tablets I'm taking I believe was responsible for the internal bleed as no cause has been found. We have recently moved home and I could only watch from the sideline as Wendy and the removals company worked. My latest ct scan was thankfully clear so hopefully a uneventful run up to winter!!!

Blog 172 Monday 29th July 2013

The saying goes "If it doesn't rain........... it pours" or something like that. Following my most recent operation, I developed severe pain across my abdomen and had to attend an emergency out of hours clinic.This pain is not associated with  the thoracic laminectomy, that pain, which is still very evident across my back . The severe pain in my abdomen was accompanied by disturbingly; blood in my urine. I was sent to the urology department of Kettering Hospital where I am undergoing several further tests. Today after some tests I learnt I had an enlarged prostrate and extremely high level of  Creatinine in my urine. A further (yet another) CT scan on my lower abdomen has been ordered and a flexible cystoscopy  request marked "urgent". I just want to warn all you blokes out there if you watch this procedure on UTube it will make your eyes water!!!!! and Yes Iain P, I am going for the all time record on medical procedures!!! As with everything else because of my history with  bowel cancer the hospital are doing everything on the hurry up. "What has this got to do with bowel cancer"? we shall see I certainly feel my best interests are at heart and the cancer surveillance kicks in once again.   

Blog 171 Tuesday 16th July 2013

I am back at home and in a lot of pain. My consultant warns that the pain will be with me for a considerable time and may take up to Ten weeks to subside. I am regularly popping Ibuprofen and co-codamol with anti inflammatory drugs thrown in. The pain spreads right across my back due to the muscles being severed and pulled apart for the op, and of course the T6 and T7 spineous process being removed. I have learnt that two Titanium clips now hold things in place on my spine where the cystic lesion was removed. The good news is that the whole thing has been removed and was also Benign. ( read more on benign cysts)

"What did It have to do with the Bowel Cancer"??? Absolutely Nothing !!!!! I was just unlucky enough to get this on top of the bowel cancer but lucky enough to have had it identified during routine cancer surveillance.  My neuro-surgeon Mr Stacey and his team in Oxford were fantastic. I have the stitches out on Friday then .........................well, after that slight deviation from "living with bowel cancer" to "living with an alien attached to my spine".............  I should get back on track............................................. I also learnt in hospital the amount of people waiting for a donor to become available for life saving surgery of various donated organs, obviously this has to be with your consent, so come on fill in those organ donation cards tell your loved ones and your doctor you would be willing to donate your organs on your demise..........nobody wants mine...  I'm not sure why..............

Back to the bowel cancer and the surveillance continues. A further CT Scan for me in August, blood tests and a meeting with the colorectal nurse specialist, well............ it keeps me busy.

Anyone living with cancer or caring for someone that is, can get loads of support and advice from Macmillan Cancer support   and in particular for bowel cancer Bowel Cancer UK will answer any questions. You can also donate your hard earned cash to these wonderful charities via their website. 

Blog 170 Monday 8th July 2013

The hottest weekend of our summer and I'm attached to respirators, iv & morphine drips, two cannula's and twenty stitches up my spine. My operation, the thoracic laminectomy was described to me after the fact as "singularly the most painful operation anyone could have". Yes I can concur with that. Firstly In order for the surgeon to identify the correct spinous process to be removed from my backbone, the exact position had to be marked with a dye.Unfortunately, this involved having four needles placed simultaneously in my spine under X- ray in situ until the correct area was identified the dye was then injected. This first process by the way was not under anesthetic. X - ray done I was back in my room for a very short while until again being wheeled away to surgery. This time I was very apprehensive, all my other operations carried risks, but nothing like having your spine operated on. Once again I said my goodbyes to Wendy and Hope ...................

The very neat stitching on the left is what is left apart from the pain of course

Total time in surgery and recovery was approximately 6 hours. It all went according to plan. Now for the news I was not expecting, the surgeon said the cystic lesion removed from my spine was in fact attached to the spinal column by a "Stalk" which had to be clamped, severed and glued. This was totally unexpected as my surgeon believed the lesion to be growing outside of the spinal column. It is not believed this will give me problems in the future but just adds to the mystery of exactly what this is and how long it has been there. It certainly has only been causing me problems in the last few months and according to the surgeon was pressing on my spine quite considerably.

What has this got to do with the Bowel Cancer?? We don't know, nothing I hope, and Ive just been  unlucky enough to get this on top of the bowel cancer but given my history with bowel cancer nothing is yet to be ruled out. I have been told as this is the Neuro-Sciences  department every single cell removed will be analysed which could take up to Ten days.

Having had the morphine drip removed I am now in a lot of pain and can't seem to get into a comfortable position, neurophen and paracetymol doesnt seem to do anything, so I have been given doses of Co-codamol but hey this thing is gone and  that's all that matters........................................ 

Blog 169 Tuesday 2nd July 2013

Well, I feel now that, for this episode at least, the waiting is over. Thank goodness. It has seemed an eternity since my daughters birthday when I was given the news of the cystic lesion (AKA Mr Alien) in my spine. Pre - op assessment tomorrow Wednesday, then I am being admitted on Thursday afternoon for an early op on Friday.  All the usual forms have flooded through the e-mail and letter box. Consent forms, personal medical information forms, MRSA awareness forms and finally directions and what to expect on arrival forms. Blah blah blah ! ......................................

Obviously, the paperwork is all very necessary and very much a part of putting ones life in the hands of our surgeons and medical staff. I owe my life to these wonderful, extremely talented people, together with everyone else that has been a part of assisting in my care during this long and sometimes arduous journey. Now if I see the light at the end of the tunnel do I walk towards the light or not ? ...............MMmmmmmmmmmm

Blog 168 Wednesday 26th June 2013

Well it seems I have a brain in there after all............ but nothing else !! my MRI scan results came back clear. Phew!!! what a relief !! Next week Pre-op assessment, and a call from the hospital today reveals my Op is the first on the list for Friday morning so have to go in on Thursday night. Thank goodness things are starting to move again...................

Blog 167 Monday 24 June 2013

Waiting anxiously for the phone to ring for the results of my recent MRI Scan on my head and brain. Yes,..... I've had the usual jokes of "Are they likely to find anything in there" even my surgeon said "I'm not expecting to find anything" then quickly corrected his sentence.

Thoracic Laminectomy

The operation on my back/spine is scheduled for the 5th July 2013 and is a Thoracic Laminectomy .
(Click on link). If you view the link of a Thoracic Laminectomy you will see a spinal supporting structure.  I may not need the supporting structure as depicted in the video depending how many of the knobbly bony bits are removed.......

I'm sure the wait is just in case they do find something from the recent scan.  My surgeon, Mr Stacey has chosen to perform the op at the John Radcliffe in Oxford as it is a fully functioning 24/7 teaching hospital, which has a myriad of expertise and geared up for any eventuality day or night. Very reassuring if anything should go wrong, however with my new found optimism it will be a walk in the park..............................I'm sure.

I also want to say a Hugh thank you to everyone following my ramblings on this blog, I can see on the cluster map the same locations are coming up time and time again "THANK YOU " it is because of you lovely people out there that I carry on, I find it very therapeutic, and hope I am making a difference in some small way.

Its all about raising awareness of Bowel Cancer.

 When cancer's found at an early stage, treatment is often easier and more likely to be successful. So finding cancer sooner rather than later can make a real difference.
(click on this link)

Blog 166 Tuesday 18th June 2013

An article caught my eye in "The Lancet" magazine, "Loving the Alien"an exhibition in a London Hospital of foreign bodies removed during surgery over the years.

Read More :

The reason I have included the above link to the exhibition is simple, I have baffled the boffins!!

Surgery on my spinal column to remove my "alien" will go ahead after the results of an MRI Scan on my head and brain. Unfortunately I will have to wait approximately a week after the MRI before they can operate. The MRI is scheduled for this friday, the surgeon felt it necessary to scan my brain before surgery as a precautionary measure. I will also have my bloods taken at the same time. I was told that the MRI will be with contrast so it is obvious to me that they are looking to exclude any further thoughts that the cancer has gone North. Or the Top End as they say in Aus.

I am just happy that I'm getting the attention, apparently, I have completely bamboozled  the boffins nobody is exactly sure what is happily living alongside my spinal column and are currently calling "Mr Alien" a Cystic Lesion. They are sure it hasn't grown inwards. It is however growing on the outside of the spinal cord covering, and pressing on the spinal cord which is giving me random pains in my legs/hips and back. The operation is risky but I am in one of the best neuro-surgical units in the country I will at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxfordshire.

As previously blogged given my history of Bowel Cancer I will be the happiest person alive when the alien is removed and the histology is found to be a benign cysttic lesion.

Bowel Cancer is operable and can be cured if caught in time Read :-


Blog 165 Wednesday 12th June 2013

My case was discussed yesterday between Mr Richard Stacey, Consultant Neurosurgeon and ,
Dr Pieter Pretorius Specialty: Neuroradiology (Diagnostic)  Consultant Neuroradiologist  at Oxford Radcliffe Hospitals.

I have been told by Richard Stacey that I am a "very interesting case" (I don't want to be interesting to a neurosurgeon, I want to be boring) apparently if it was a tumour the MRI contrast imaging should have shown the cystic lesion on my spine as "enhanced"  and it didn't.
As a result of the boffins meeting it has been concluded that this lesion on my spine is of, uncertain origin......... and the fact that it does not enhance during contrast, does make a metastatic tumour or meningioma much less likely................................................??

Hooray.............I think .... Hey! its 11mm in size sitting on my spine and I want it out.

Understandably there is caution amongst the boffins, as given my history of bowel cancer and the metastases to  my lungs, ......................but the waiting is killing me.............cant believe I said that.

I have another appointment in Oxford with neurosurgeon Richard Stacey next week Monday 17th June, this is just before Wendy's birthday and a couple of days before the day I promised to help move my youngest son into his first home.

Bowel Cancer

Please understand the Symptoms of Bowel Cancer

Read More :

There is plenty of information out there if you have any concerns


Blog 164 Wednesday 5th June 2013

The surgical procedure to remove the growth from my spinal column was explained in graphic detail and as with all surgical procedures there is the obvious associated risks. BUT I'm sure all fellow sufferers will agree, I just want the thing out. It has no place invading my spine. I am actually looking forward to the procedure, ...........................can't wait, it will be another small victory against cancer.

If you refer back to the picture on Blog 162 and the nobbley boney bits of the spine (labelled spinous process) at T6 and T7 level, these will be drilled and cut away to gain access. The growth will then be `plucked' out of its hidey hole. The  Nobbley bits are then discarded (apparently we don't need them) and the growth will be sent for analysis. My Moving Minds therapist has taught me how to be as positive as possible during these times, It didn't work for a few days I was a mess!! but now ready to get on with it.

Blog 163 Monday 3rd June 2013

Not knowing what was about to unfold my eldest son Jonathan turned up unexpectedly at 9am as a surprise visit. At 10.00 the secretary to neurosurgeon Mr Richard Stacey phoned. I have to be down there for a consultation today at 16.45 at The Manor Hospital in Oxfordshire. Funny how things go, there we were basking in the beautiful hot weather enjoying the rare  sunshine .....then all hell breaks loose. It's a two hour drive from us !! Lucky Jonathan turned up as Hope will be out of school soon ........ok here we go .......again.

Blog 162 Saturday 1st June 2013

I am still waiting for the results of the 2nd MRI Scan last Wednesday. It was not a pleasant experience and as the contrast was injected I felt quite nauseous. Contrast is used to improve the visibility of internal body structures. It was confirmed that the metastases in my spine is between
T6 and T7 slightly lower than the level of my sternum or breast bone and is on the spinal cord. Metastases (Tumour) as this is a secondary tumour from the original bowel cancer.

The Human Spinal Column

Mentally, I am constantly reminded of my Oncologists previous words that I would not necessarily be offered chemotherapy again as a treatment as it did not work for me. The treatment left is radiotherapy or surgery I await my referral to the neurological unit to ponder on the next steps............
Read More : I have almost forgotten the original bowel cancer surgery as a distant memory.

Only a few weeks ago (Blog 159 Thursday 9th May 2013) after a CT Scan, blood tests and a colonoscopy my bowel cancer consultant Mr El-Rabaa in Kettering Hospital told me "all was clear" and he didn't need to see me again for another 15 months, thank goodness (again) for my oncologist Craig Macmillan in Northampton. Its the 2nd time he has found metastases, firstly  in my left lung some time after both lungs had been operated on, then in my spine. Craig Macmillan has found these when other consultants and doctors have not had the presence of mind to "Look outside the box"

 Wendy's Blog

The title of this Blog is "Living with Bowel cancer" . When we decided to use this, we never envisaged that that would be the case. We thought at first that they would cut it out, chemotherapy would work and then we would live happily ever after and enjoy our silver and gold wedding anniversaries......that now looks very unlikely. I know that we have known for awhile now that we have borrowed time but every time something new happens that time shortens.

We have gone through a roller coaster ride of emotions since the 23rd. Desperate unhappiness, anger with deep sorrow thrown in. On the night of Hope's birthday when we were sitting in the restaurant Hope was incredibly cuddly towards her Dad, at one time before the call, which we were expecting, we looked at each other and there were tears in John's eyes. You see we have had our suspicions for awhile now, that something was not right, the aches and pains, loss of feeling in his hands, feet and arms, but although I have been urging him to see the Doctor. John did not want to know! It has only been the pain that has steadily been increasing and my nagging that made him contact the GP then the Oncologist.

I know that this Blog is read by many people, both cancer sufferers and their families, and this next few lines is to the families and spouses of cancer sufferers.

Living with a cancer sufferer is not easy. There are days when you cannot do anything right or say anything right. Take a walk, have a bath get out of the house and give them time to get themselves together. It is incredibly difficult to get to grips with everything happening to them and you are the one person that knows them the best, you are the one person that they know that they can project some of their frustrations and anger onto.

It is the unfairness it is the injustice of cancer. If you look at John you would never think that there was anything wrong, he is still the man I have known for 20 years, just with a few more wrinkles and scars. The man I love ,and I will be there holding his hand through this next episode in our lives.

Blog 161 Thursday 23rd May 2013

Possibly the most difficult blog I have had to write so far. Today is my daughters 11th birthday we were celebrating the occasion in the local "Beefeater" grill restaurant, but I was expecting a call from my Oncologist regarding the recent MRI scan. When the telephone call eventually came through, it was just as Hope was blowing out  her birthday cake candles. His voice was  almost apologetic "You have an    11 mm tumour on your spinal column and a problem in the vertebra in your neck which needs further investigation."...... I have a further MRI scan on Wednesday next week for my spine/neck area but will now be referred to the neurological unit in Oxford for further tests and investigation. I carried on as normal for the birthday celebration until at home, out of sight and lost it.....................:((

Blog 160 Tuesday 21st May 2013

Am I paranoid ? I suppose living with bowel cancer makes you paranoid. Some while ago I reported to my oncologist that I had been experiencing a dull ache in the middle of my back, in my arms and leg. He decided to review the recent CT Scans with a radiologist. Obviously I am concerned at the possibility of secondary bone cancer (Bowel cancer settling in my bones) or am I being paranoid?

Although a Secondary Bone Cancer can occur in any bone in the body, the most commonly affected bones are the spine, ribs, pelvis, skull, and the upper bones of the arms (humerus) and the legs (femur). 
On Friday 17th May my oncologist telephoned to say my last CT scans had been reviewed and that the main focus of those scans were the soft tissue of my other internal organs. He decided that I needed a further MRI Scan. Tomorrow on Wednesday 22nd May I shall once again be visiting The Three Shires Hospital in Northampton for the MRI.
Colorectal cancer remains the third most common cancer among adult men and women in the UK and the third most common cause of death from cancer. It is well accepted that colorectal cancers metastasize to the liver and lungs more frequently than to bone or other organs.  Because bone metastasis often indicates the terminal phase of colon cancer, clinicians should be more vigilant about possible bone metastasis in colorectal cancer patients with lung metastasis.

Blog 159 Thursday 9th May 2013

All my recent tests have come back, thankfully with good results. My help from Moving Minds (Psychological Management and Rehabilitation provider of psychological services) and my weekly chat is helping change the negative thoughts that have been plaguing me. I am now asking for your help.

In March Bowel Cancer UK launched its  'Never Too Young' campaign for younger bowel cancer patients. There are over 2,100 people under the age of 50 diagnosed with bowel cancer every year in the UK and I was one of them.

Bowel Cancer UK have written to the Prime Minister David Cameron asking for a meeting and his support for the recommendations in our policy report on the experiences of younger bowel cancer patients. Bowel Cancer UK  believe that implementing these recommendations will enable them to make real progress in saving lives from bowel cancer.

Bowel Cancer UK are asking for you to help by signing their petition asking the Prime Minister to meet with Bowel Cancer UK and the families and representatives of younger bowel cancer patients.
You can sign the petition just copy and paste the following link URL into your browser

Please help get as many people as possible to sign. Share it on Twitter, Facebook and email, and ask your family, friends and work colleagues. It only takes a moment, but your support will help ensure that the lives of younger people are not unnecessarily lost to bowel cancer.
Bowel Cancer UK will be presenting the signatures to Downing Street in a few months.
Please sign the petition today. Thank you for your support.


Blog 158 Tuesday 16th April 2013

Holly Slater a seemingly fit and healthy 28-year-old died from bowel cancer after doctors repeatedly told her she was suffering from IBS a harmless digestive complaint.
Nursery worker Holly Slater visited her doctor several times over an 18 month period, yet doctors did did not recognise her symptoms - which included bloating and abdominal cramps - and mistook the beginnings of bowel cancer for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
The cancer eventually spread to her lungs, bones and liver and she died in February this year.
Read More

OK to those that have followed my blog I apologise for repeating myself........................ but I am horrified when I read , young persons are still being diagnosed with IBS (Irritable bowel syndrome)  that turns out to be bowel cancer. I have apologised to my followers as I have previously blogged that  this was my situation albeit some years older than the unfortunate Holly Slater. I have never really forgiven the original GP for not taking things further and correctly diagnosing my symptoms, but for younger persons, IBS "Fits the profile " much better than bowel cancer. Bowel cancer cases in young people has risen by 120% in ten years GP's should by now start to question and consider the young individual for bowel cancer. A simple poo smear sent for analysis was what saved my life by a doctor that I could rely on.

Blog 157 Sunday 14th April 2013

We have been away for a few days making the most of the Easter holidays.  Tomorrow is the start of the new school term for Hope and after two weeks off, a new working week for Wendy. I have yet to receive any results of my recent tests, but view this as good news, as previously if anything untoward was found a phone call is usually received within a few days.

Last weekend I cancelled the various cancer chat/information forums that I had subscribed to, as I was finding it all too depressing. Originally, I wanted to join in the chat of the various forums to offer support and advice where possible ...................The shear magnitude of the cancer situation and persons affected by cancer and their stories, really touched me, but lately in a very negative way.
I am hoping the Fluoxetine capsules prescribed, will soon kick in. I am advised they take three to four weeks to give any benefit. I am receiving help from Moving Minds   (Psychological Management and Rehabilitation provider of psychological services)   and my weekly chat is helping unravel and change the negative thoughts that have been plaguing me. After such a long winter I am really looking forward to the summer. Today was the first warm-ish day in the Midlands since August last year!!!!, reminds me of how much I miss Oz.

Blog 156 Thursday 28th March 2013

I was previously given a "Two week fast track referral"for colonoscopy CT Scan and blood tests, all in all it has turned out quite un-remarkable. Although I await the definitive results it appears I have been checked to exclude microscopic COLITIS.

Diagnosis Of Microscopic Colitis

In microscopic colitis, the colon generally appears normal on sight. Therefore, a colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy might not show any evidence of disease. In some patients there may be areas of swelling or redness in the colon, but these may be difficult to see.
In order to make a diagnosis, several biopsies must be taken from the colon during a colonoscopy. These biopsies will preferably come from several different areas in the colon. The hallmark signs of the disease can then be seen microscopically on biopsy tissue, hence the name

During the colonoscopy I had eight biopsy's taken from different parts of the colon I was under sedation of (Midazolam hydrochloride) thank goodness but awake and viewing the complete procedure on a VDU monitor. I was extremely relieved that further cancerous lesions were not found.
I await the histology...............

I sometimes have persons contact me via the blog to highlight an issue of importance to them, we are normally connected with one thing in common to raise awareness of cancer. One such lady Susan Vento has contacted me from the US In her own words ......................................

My name is Susan Vento. My husband Bruce Vento was a member of the US House of Representatives—until October 10th, 2000, when everything changed. Bruce died of pleural mesothelioma—a rare disease caused by asbestos exposure that kills 90-95% of those who have it. Not many people know about this terrible disease, which lead me to reach out to you; I noticed that you have an influential cancer blog full of great information. I am hoping you will help me spread awareness about asbestos cancers and help to protect the rights of those who have been affected by mesothelioma and other cancers.
I am spokesperson for a great online resource called the Asbestos Cancer Victims’ Rights Campaign (cancervictimsrights (dot) org) that fights to protect cancer victims and their families. I wrote a blog piece (cancervictimsrights (dot) org/my-story-opposition-to-the-fact-act-susan-vento/) and would love if you could read it, share it and incorporate your thoughts. Your support, and the support of your online community, can make the difference to ensure justice for all cancer victims and their loved ones.
Thank you for joining me in my fight to educate people about such a deadly disease. Our ultimate goal is to help those who have suffered from all forms of cancer in their struggle to seek health and justice.