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From Warning Signs to Tests, What Led to My Diagnosis

At the end of 2016, I had just resigned from my job of 17 years due to severe scoliosis, back pain, and inability to stay on my feet for long. By the end of January 2017, I was feeling terrible. No energy, more back pain, abdominal pain and just feeling sick all the time. The only indication I had was that my urine started to have a strong, strange smell. This went on for months.

Pink urine?

In July, I had worked at my part-time job that morning when I experienced knee-buckling pain in my abdomen. I had to go to the grocery store and when I got in the door I realized had to urinate. Went to the restroom there and even though the lighting wasn’t great, I thought my urine looked pink. I decided to go home and see how I felt, before I called the Dr. I got home and had to urinate again, still having abdominal cramps. This time the urine was so red it was maroon! I decided to go to the best ER. My husband was at the dentist, so I knew I had to take myself.

CT scan, MRI, bloodwork, cystoscopy…

They did a ct scan but saw nothing, sent me home with antibiotics, assuming it was a bladder infection. I went to my Dr., he sent me for an mri, they saw nothing. Had lots of bloodwork done, nothing. Went to a urologist, he checked all my test results and kept telling me everything looked great. He said it was a positive thing that they hadn’t found anything. He was doing a cystoscopy as a last effort to find anything. He’s saying “it looks good, healthy – oh, wait. There’s your problem, turn your head and look at the screen. That’s cancer.”

I felt like a truck had hit me!

The tumor was so nasty looking. He’s saying he wants to take it out in a week. He took biopsies to send off, but said he had seen these so often, he knew what it was. I freaked out, called my husband and my children (they are adults). I researched this and saw that it is very survivable. The Dr. had said that they are known to reccur quite often, so I knew I would have to have scans for a couple years. The surgery was quick, but the recovery was much more involved and painful than I expected. However, basically as soon as the tumor was gone I stopped having that “sick” feeling all the time.

Don’t give up until you find out what’s wrong

I have always been in tune to my body, but I pay much more attention now. I’m glad I didn’t just ignore the symptoms and push through the pain like I’ve always done, or this could have turned out quite differently! I’m very thankful that my cancer story was different than many others I know, I praise God for that! But I am a survivor, and pray that anyone else having strange symptoms will go to the Dr. and keep going until they find out what’s wrong, so that they have a chance to survive also!

What symptoms led to your diagnosis?

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.