Two years ago, Amy Kircher of Paola (pictured above with her husband, Larry) was living her healthiest life at age 63. She and her husband Larry did yoga, walked two to three miles a day and ate healthy.
Amy was also proactive about getting her health screenings on time. Since her father died from colon cancer years before, Amy had regular screening colonoscopies performed every five years. But that April, without having any symptoms, Amy’s colonoscopy revealed devastating news: colon cancer.
“I was shocked,” Amy said. “It didn’t seem real. I just think if I hadn’t kept up with my screening, we could have missed this.”
Amy needed surgery to remove the tumor from her colon. Christopher Lewis, DO, a board-certified surgeon with Olathe Health Miami County Surgical Associates, performed the surgery at Miami County Medical Center (MCMC). Amy spent five days in the hospital.
“It was a major surgery, but my pain was really well managed,” Amy said. “I can’t say enough good things about my care. All the nurses and everyone I had contact with were so wonderful.”
After surgery, Amy followed up regularly with Dr. Lewis as well as David Lee, MD, a board-certified medical oncologist with Olathe Cancer Care. For Amy, surgery was her cure from cancer; she did not require radiation or chemotherapy.
One year after her cancer diagnosis, Dr. Lewis performed another colonoscopy on Amy. This time the results were cancer-free. Amy will continue to receive routine colonoscopies.
She and her husband are back to their daily yoga and walks, and look forward to hiking in the Colorado mountains each fall.
“It is so important to me to encourage people to take charge of their health and get their colonoscopies,” Amy said. “I know people don’t want to talk about it, but it can save your life. It absolutely saved mine.”
To schedule a colonoscopy at MCMC, call 913-557-0700. To learn more about the screening, visit our colonoscopy page.
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