Beating colon cancer: Viral video’s Jennifer Waller opens up to Trev
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, and it's a very special month in the Trevelise house. That's because my wife, Deneen, is a 10-year cancer survivor.
Last Thursday night, I spoke to colon cancer survivor Jennifer Waller, a 32-year-old single mom who works as a nurse. Jennifer waged the battle of her life against cancer and is currently cancer free.
She has started "Jen's Journey" to "hopefully help people to assist patients and their families and give light during their time of darkness." As Jen said, "Even though you think you know this and you read it in books, when it happens to you it is a totally different experience, it really resets your mind and makes you think of big pictures and not the everyday routine."
Jen's story has gone viral, as has her plea for people to get checked for colon cancer early. Most people get screened at the age of 45 to 50.
"As I started doing research into getting colon cancer in your 30s, I found an astonishing amount of prevalence of people getting colon cancer in your 30s and in the last 5 years the rates have tripled," Jen told me.
That finding alarmed Jen because, according to her, "I was an ER nurse for the last 10 years and not once have I ever thought I had colon cancer." She had seen people with breast cancer, cervical cancer, but never colon cancer.
"It's the third-leading cause of death in the United States and we don't screen for it until we're 45," Jen said.
Since posting the video, Jen has had an astonishing response from multiple people saying that they have been diagnosed with colon cancer in their thirties. She added, "The good thing about colon cancer is that it's extremely curable if it's caught in it's early stages"
After hearing Jen's story, as well as seeing the rising statistics of people in their thirties developing colon cancer, it's time to include the dreaded colonoscopy in your 30-something physical. You may not like the procedure, but you'll love hearing the results knowing that you either don't have colon cancer, or can be glad you caught it early if they were to find something.
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