A woman from Washington DC thought she was suffering from food poisoning, but as it turned out, she instead had stage 4 colon cancer.
This is not the first case of what appeared to be a regular illness ending up to be something far worse, but at least this one has a happy ending.
Woman Shocked With Stage 4 Colon Cancer Diagnosis
Diana Zepeda, 34 years old, wen to her doctor thinking that she had food poisoning. She was suffering from gas and cramps in her stomach in late 2016, but her condition and symptoms eventually worsened.
"I thought I could eat anything and have a stomach of steel. I was getting what I thought was random food poisoning, but kind of often. A lot of gas, cramps and diarrhea," Zepeda told People Magazine. She tried cutting grains, dairy, and sugar from her diet for a whole month, thinking that this would prevent the return of the symptoms.
Zepeda was suffering from diarrhea daily and was seeing blood in her stool by January 2017. When a gastroenterologist ran tests, there were traces of E. coli in her body. Zepeda thought that things would be better after taking antibiotics for five days, but that did not happen.
A colonoscopy was scheduled for Zepeda to try to see what was wrong with her. However, because her stomach cramps and nausea became worse in the weeks leading to the procedure, the doctors instead prepared a sigmoidoscopy, or a partial colonoscopy.
That was when doctors discovered the cause of it all: a tumor blocking Zepeda's colon, leading to a diagnosis of stage 4 colon cancer.
"After the initial shock and disbelief, my first thoughts were, 'What did I do wrong to get this?'" Zepeda said.
Zepeda already saw some of the colon cancer symptoms, but it was not until the sigmoidoscopy that the disease was confirmed. The lesson here is that you should never ignore any symptoms you may be feeling, as it could be a sign of something much worse.
Where Is Diana Zepeda Now?
The doctors found that the colon cancer had spread to the liver, and so for the next several months, Zepeda underwent chemotherapy, along with more surgeries. According to Zepeda, the whole ordeal had her feel "completely depleted."
However, Zepeda, with her husband, Alexander Sweeney, celebrated her final chemotherapy treatment earlier this week. There is still one more scheduled surgery for Zepeda, but she is already looking forward to resuming her normal life as a colon cancer survivor.
Zepeda might want to shift to a healthy diet with a fair share of nuts, though, as these help prevent the colon cancer recurrence.