Sharon Anderson was 35 and had two young children when she was diagnosed with bowel cancer 11 years ago. She had undergone genetic testing because of a family ...history of cancer and this was
followed up with a colonoscopy and subsequent diagnosis.
Sharon said “So, I went to that colonoscopy as a healthy 35 year old with no symptoms; I left a few hours later with a letter for my doctor saying that I already had a tumour in my colon.
“The next 6 weeks were mad. There were appointments, scans and lots of tears. Luckily I had the most amazing support from my family, friends, and my consultant.
“My consultant decided that although I needed a sub-total colectomy (having cancer at 35 meant the risk of it coming back was too high to just remove the section it was in) I could have keyhole
surgery, instead of the far more invasive surgery that was common at the time.
“4 days after the operation I was sitting up dressed and packed and no doctor or nurse was going to keep me from going home to my children.”
Because her cancer was caught early, Sharon didn’t require any further treatment but has regular colonoscopies.
“I would say to anyone going through cancer, however you feel after, you will need help to deal with the 'bigness' of it all, whether that is from counselling or just being able to get
advice and talk to people going through the same thing through Beating Bowel Cancer. 11 years on, I'm enjoying life. The best thing about having had cancer is that you realise what's important and