Lessons learnt, action points and techniques - Part one.jpg

Lessons learnt, action points and techniques – Part one


[email protected]

Steve Webster has lived with his wife Maggie in the Algarve for nearly four years. His life was shattered in March 2007 by a diagnosis of cancer in the colon. He has tried to record his experiences in a series of three articles, all written on the point of beginning six months of chemotherapy.

In part one, Steve explained his reasons for writing about his experience with cancer and the hope that he can help people to avoid going through it. Doctors initially thought he had an infection but after several months of continuing problems, it soon became apparent that he in fact had cancer. Things moved faster after this.

In Part two, Steve discusses his surgery in Barlavento hospital in Portimão.

OF ALL the three articles I’ve written, this one was by far the hardest. Not for want of material, but the difficulty in finding the balance between professional systems, personal copings and what might be relevant in a general publication.

A friend asked how come I, a near lifelong vegetarian, could go down with cancer of the colon. My short reply was that in today’s world the number of chemicals intruding into all aspects of our life puts all of us at risk, beef-eaters or vegetarian.

My slightly longer answer is that I believe that many aspects of our modern way of life are inherently cancerous, from BSE to gross over utilisation and the awful disposal of plastic bags, to the utterly unknown hazards of GM protein, which I thought was illegal in Europe but it is not.

If there are drops of blood in your stools (or from anywhere else unusual), get it checked as soon as possible and if the bleeding continues get more extensive checks. If the doctor downplays the urgency or sidetracks onto another issue, change doctor! If there is a history in your family (my mother had a colostomy when relatively young) get more regular checks and precautions. I think we males should think about more regular checks, just as most women already accept the need for regular checks for breast cancer etc.

Vitamin B17, found in apricot kernels, is deemed by supporters to be the body’s natural defence against cancer. Kernels apparently produce toxic chemicals in the body (cyanide), which match and remove any cancerous elements. Well, you can see why the health professionals might start to get perturbed. A doctor who had been struck off the register was charged recently with supplying these illegally.

Yet in Portugal you can obtain them and I know friends and acquaintances who have dealt with and removed serious cancers using this as the principal means. Colon cancer scrunches up a chunk of the colon wall but there’s a lot of colon and you can cut out the bad bit, stretch what’s left (and reconnect frequently – as they did with me). Had I had one of these more difficult cancers, then I’d definitely be far more interested in B17 and I will probably go back on to apricot kernels after chemotherapy as an extra preventative.

Overall I think the proper balance is to consider the proper place for B17 use, but to be careful too to consult every regular medical resource.

I was on at least two prayer lists. Even as a complete non-Christian I am fully grateful and believe it has to help.

Plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, and fruit juices help to unclog your colon and colonic irrigation is a good way of keeping the area clean.

If you don’t mind a drug solution apparently Imodium is useful. I prefer natural methods, and I used to do a lot of yoga and bodywork.

My personal experience is that yoga really helps with diarrhoea and running your fingers or knuckles down a line below the hip joint down to just above the knee. This may sound strange but it works by opening up channels in the body. Start off gently until you find a balance.

Gradually, gradually I’m getting my body back and my systems are beginning to work normally. Chemotherapy will upset them further and as I type this, I’ve just begun two days of chemo so we will see. These are some of the means I’ve used to reassert myself after all these assaults on my being (some benign!). If any of this helps anyone who reads my articles then I shall be delighted.

Do you have a view on this story? Email: [email protected]