Life without my stomach

A terrific first-person account in The Independent (UK) of a woman having her stomach removed to avoid an even worse cancer-related fate:

As when a loud noise wakes you unexpectedly in the night, I awoke startled, initially unaware of the world and the time that had passed. I’d been dreaming. Seconds passed, and the reality of my surroundings became clear to me. Like someone wiping the mist from a steamed-up window, my mind played catch-up and I remembered that I was in hospital; that I had spent the last few hours having my stomach completely removed….

In November, it will be two years since I received the result of a genetic test that would change my life. I tested positive for the E-cadherin gene and so discovered that I had the same gene that has plagued my dad’s side of the family with a rare form of stomach cancer. It is such a deadly cancer that by the time it makes itself known to its host, the individual has no chance of recovering. It is a slow and painful loss of life.</blockquote

Read the whole thing here


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