Patient Battles Colorectal Cancer - KMOT.COM - Minot, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Patient Battles Colorectal Cancer

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Jill Goetz was diagnosed with stage-three colorectal cancer after getting a colonscopy in 2007. 

"I was not feeling well, I was so tired, I couldn't figure out what the heck was going on. And I knew something was wrong," says Goetz. 

Doctors say the cancer generally affects patients over the age of 50, so after being diagnosed at 36, Jill says she was pretty shocked. 

"I don't fit the profile as a typical colorectal cancer patient," says Goetz. "I was young, I was a single mom, life was going just fine, and all of a sudden it just hit me."

After her diagnosis, Jill spent plenty of time in radiation machines, like this one, at the Bismarck Cancer Center. 

"It was a year of treatments and radiation. It was just unbelievable thoughts that go through your head during that time," says Goetz. 

Of course, any form of cancer poses a threat to our bodies, but doctors say, if caught early, colorectal cancer is highly treatable.

"The most important prognostic factor is actually the staging, which is how early you get it," says Radiation Oncologist Dr. Tarek Dufan. "There are four stages. If you catch it in stage one, which is the earliest, you can cure it mainly with surgical treatments, and the survival rate is very high."

So, trust your body. If you feel something isn't right, make a trip to your doctor. And if they suggest a colonoscopy, get one. Because even though it may not be the most comfortable procedure out there, it could save your life. 


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