This is a happy story about a 82-year-old colon cancer patient. To us, he is known as Penang Hill Uncle (PHU). This is because his hobby is hill climbing and he has been doing this everyday for the past 30 years! Even today he still goes hill climbing, never mind that he has cancer!
PHU came to see us in October 2012 after undergoing surgery for his colon cancer. He refused chemotherapy. He said. “Chemo is difficult. I prefer to try my chances with your herbs.” After 3 years, we sat down with PHU to recall what he had gone through. And PHU said he was very happy to share his story with us.
Chris: Uncle, we are going to write your story. Is it okay with you? For the video, we will mask your face so that they don’t know your identity.
PHU: It is okay. No need to mask my face! I am not ashamed. I am not a thief. Let everyone know about this!
So here goes, PHU’s story.
Initial Problem and Hospital Experience
In July 2012, 79 year-old-PHU did a colonoscopy followed by a CT scan. The result showed the presence of a 3.1 x 3.0 x 3.3 cm fungating mass at the sigmoid colon, in keeping with a primary tumour. There was no evidence of distant metastasis although the cancer had spread to the surrounding nodes.
The only option for PHU was surgery. But before surgery, PHU was told that the procedure could be risky. He might suffer a heart attack, stroke or may even die. However, PHU had no choice but to go under the knife. He survived without any problem! The surgery was done in August 2012 and it only cost him RM 3,000 (in a government hospital).
Two days after surgery, one of his leg became numb and was unable to move! One doctor asked him to take Hacks. The problem was resolved. He was discharged from the hospital after a week.
The histopathology report confirmed a rectosigmoid colon cancer – well-differentiated with visceral peritoneum involvement and lymph node metastases (7/12); pT4,pN2,pMx. PHU was told his cancer was Stage 3 (going to Stage 4).
No to Chemotherapy, Took His Chances with Herbs and Diet Change
PHU was asked to consider undergoing 8 cycles of chemotherapy. But the doctor did caution him about the risks involved.
PHU also was also told that the benefit of chemotherapy is only 10 percent. Without chemo, the chances of the cancer recurring and spreading is 50 percent. If PHU were to undergo chemotherapy, the chances of recurring and spreading is 40 percent.
Due to his old age and also him being without any symptom, PHU and family opted to “watch and see.” No chemotherapy! He said, ” I decided to take my chances with your herbs and therapy.” That was when PHU came to seek our help in early October 2012. He was started on the herbs for his colon and metastatic lymph nodes.
PHU went back to see his doctors at the general hospital for monitoring every few months. All was well. The doctors were also aware that PHU was on herbal therapy and they did object about this.
In September 2013, PHU had his heart checked. Look at what the doctor wrote below:
The AcuGraph readings over the years showed improved energy levels.
16 November 2012
14 November 2013
18 December 2015
(Note: AcuGraph 4 was donated by Dr. Adrian Larsen of Miridia Technology Inc., USA. Use of AcuGraph at CA Care is free of charge)
The following are his blood test results over the years.
|13 Aug 2012||10.1||Before surgery|
|18 March 2013||3.2|
|20 Nov. 2013||2.8||Started herbs & good diet, October 2013|
|20 Jan. 2014||4.5||Started to eat outside food|
|13 June 2014||2.1|
|4 Aug. 2014||5.4|
|26 Nov. 2014||5.6|
|18 May 2015||9.1|
Sudden Rise of CEA to 9.1
After 3 years of “doing well” PHU told us that his CEA had started to increase from 2.1 to 9.1. PHU said in the first year after surgery he was very strict with his diet. So his CEA was well within normal limit, below 5.0. But as he got better and better, PHU started to eat “outside” food. It was then that his CEA started to climb out of normal range.
Such development is not surprising at all. It happened most of the time with most patients. This reflects human nature. Since he is already 80 plus, so be it! We hope that his problem will not go out of control!
Each Day, I Never Think About My Cancer or that I Am Going to Die
Chris: Uncle, does this cancer bother you every day? Does it worry you? Do you ever think that it is going to die because of this cancer?
PHU: No, it does not worry me. People who does not have cancer also die. So why worry so much? Also people tell me that too much worry can kill you!
Hill Climbing – My only job!
Chris: What do you do every day? Hill climbing?
PHU: Yes, Monday to Friday I go out to climb the hills. I started off about 3 pm and come home at 5.30 pm. Every day I do that. I have been doing this for the past 30 years! It has become my job!