It’s never your ill fate, till it’s not too late!!
Every cancer patient...a story untold...
Few days back I was treating a gentleman that I doubt I would ever forget...just felt like sharing what I’ve been through.
“Doctor Saab you know when I was young, I used to be a very handsome man”...the man said in a very weird voice, as I was removing the thick pad of dressing around his neck...and of what was remaining in his face...it seemed to be quite true. The smell was terrible and the sight just unbearable!!
This was a almost 6 ft tall gentleman...sparkling blue eyes and very fair complexion...the reason why he was here is...he had lost his face…Yes his face to oral cancer!!!
Pt: “I started smoking very early...was more for fun, sometimes just to show how cool I was...never realised when it became my habit...”
Me: “why did you not quit”...
Pt: “I did...and it was very easy to quit”. He laughed...”I would do that often! Only to get back!!”
Me: why did you wait till it became so bad, was money an issue!?
Pt: Sir frankly I have lots of money. I dealt in properties, so money wasn’t an issue. I was a very successful man. Each deal I mediated would close well and so was the money I earned. With money came long hours, the stress and the smoking. I was very confident man, to the point of being rude and arrogant, so when this cancer thing happened, I just couldn’t believe it was happening and it was happening to me! It all started as a small ulcer like thing in the inner cheek, it caused lot of burning while having food but I simply ignored it for pain was never an issue I was very strong & could bear any amount of pain ”
Me: Then what happened?
Pt: My wife died few years ago and with her I lost the most precious thing I ever had! To ease my mood and to tackle with the loss of my wife my smoking frequency increased and so did this cancer. The pain had increased too. And by then there was this very foul smelling wound in my mouth, I would feel so ashamed that by then I stopped going out of house. I wouldn’t even accept any relatives to meet. It was only when this pain and this wound became big my son has got me out of my home to the hospital”
Medically this patient had advanced oral cancer that had eaten away his lower half of face...including the bone (mandible), entire inner structures were visible and the sight was truly ghastly.
So what got him to this state...the deadly cancer, the kick tobacco gave, the ignorance towards his disease, the grief of losing his wife, loss of will to live....probably all!!
The cancer didn’t just destroy his face...but his confidence, his identity and probably soon...his existence!!!
I doubt if I would ever forget this man...his face...rather lack of it....I guess even if a single soul gets the correct lesson out of this story, his suffering would probably would for once be useful to someone else.
We may ban tobacco, show video clips, paste horrible photos on the packet itself but it’s a natural human tendency to default...not falling for these things isn’t a momentary act...but a continued one. As a doctor I know this disease, I diagnose it, I treat it but with each patient I see, this new-age Ravaan keeps raising its ugly head...one after another!! For now, this has ceased to be a fight...it’s a battle. A battle that one will have to fight from within...
We at I CAN WIN are continuously behind this devil...and we won’t stop till we hammer the last nail in its coffin.
Remember it’s never your ill fate
Till it’s not too late!!
(Contributed by – Dr Vishal Soni)
"जब भी देखो छोटा दाना, उसकी पहचान जल्द ही कराना
कैंसर को बनने न दो नासूर, शीग्र करो इसे दूर!"