Survivor Describes His Stage II Colon Cancer Treatment

 Dave Maret outlines his stage II colon cancer treatment

stage ii colon cancer treatmentDave Maret was 66 when he was diagnosed with colon cancer, four months after his wife was diagnosed with breast cancer.  He was a bit overwhelmed at first and could think only of his father-in-law who had a full colon resection as part of his treatment. Luckily, Dave was informed that he was only a stage II colon cancer patient. For his stage II colon cancer treatment, he underwent a laparoscopic procedure to remove 18 inches of his colon.

It was after the partial colon resection that Dave thought of his wife using the Oncotype DX test to determine the risk of recurrence and whether she needed chemotherapy or not. Dave asked his doctor for the test and it turned out that his Oncotype DX score was low, indicating that he would not need chemotherapy. He was able to resume his fitness regimen just three weeks after surgery. For more on Dave’s experience, watch the video below:


Dave Maret:  Hi I am Dave Maret.  I am 69 years old.  When I was 66, I was diagnosed with colon cancer and it seemed like my wife and I were just double-whammied four months earlier.  She had been diagnosed with breast cancer, and had to have a lumpectomy and radiation therapy and so I was certainly in a kind of a bad state-of-mind from the beginning and then as I thought back more, my father-in-law had colon cancer but he had let it go so far that it was, I am not sure what stage it was, but he had to have complete removal of his colon and he wound up with a colostomy and of course that was my second worry then was then oh my gosh that is what is going to happen to me when you have a colostomy.  It was just something that seemed almost inconceivable.

But, I think the main thing to remember is that I finally figured out, once that it was just stage II.  It was treatable and luckily, I was able to get into the hospital quickly and because they only had to take out about 18 inches of my colon, and they did it laparoscopically which meant very small incisions where they removed the bad tissue, so I was able to not had to have colostomy which most anybody get stage II probably would never had to have, but of course, you know, you think about the worse whenever you first get this diagnosis.

The lymph nodes were not involved and I was very pleased with that and so was the surgeon and he said I was very lucky because I got in so quickly and the reason I was able to get in quickly was our daughter had some connections though the burn unit in Maricopa Hospital in Phoenix and she had friends at UW Madison who helped us get into the Carbone Cancer Centre very quickly.

Anyhow, the main thing that you have to be concerned with is what are the treatments afterwards, whether it is chemo or radiation and just like my wife when she had breast cancer, there was a thing called Oncotype DX test, which is a gene test to see if chemotherapy will be appropriate or not. In her case, she was very lucky to prove that it wasn’t, so she did not had to have it. I asked the doctor was there anything similar to that available for colon cancer and he indicated that just a few months before that, Oncotype had developed a test for colon cancer as well and because of that, I was able to take that test and it turned out that it was a very low score as well, and so I did not have to take chemotherapy. I was able to be back up and running, literally, and I ran a couple of miles a day and within three weeks after surgery, I was back running again. So I guess the main thing to take away from this is that this is not a death sentence, it is not even incapacitating disease. Yeah, we catch it early enough and that you don’t have to worry about the other possible consequences.

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