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Norberto Roman

Patients & Survivors Stage IV Colon Cancer Tennessee

Story: "I found out about my diagnosis in December 2021. After a Cologuard screening coming positive in November, my doctor scheduled me for a colonoscopy on December 20, 2021.

"On December 8 while participating in a veteran's retreat in California, away from my whole family, I ended up in the ER with a stomach pain on my right side. What we thought was appendicitis resulted as a cancerous tumor that looked like it spread to my liver. You can't imagine how my world went down at that moment, with only the leaders of the retreat there no family and I was miles away from home.

"I rushed back home to confirm the results of the CT scan and on December 16, I had a colonoscopy, which came back with metastatic stage IV colon cancer with known metastases to the liver, lung, and peritoneum. In January, I had to have a paracentesis to eliminate 3 liters of liquid in my stomach, after which I lost 41 pounds.

"I am a retired army wounded veteran with two tours in Iraq, I have a chronic lung disease from exposure to sulfur fires. You can't imagine how scared I was when I found out that cancer spread to other parts, especially the lung also."

Advice: "Do not wait to schedule an appointment for a colonoscopy. Get one as soon as possible. Early screening saves lives. Attitude is everything, I tell myself I don't have cancer: I was diagnosed with cancer. I don't let this dictate my life. Fight the good fight and be positive about it. We can beat this, with a positive mind and attitude and at the same time by helping other warriors fighting the same fight."

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