Jamie Crespo, 29

What is your experience with Colon Cancer? (Are you a patient, survivor, advocate, or caregiver?)

Both my parents were diagnosed with colon cancer in 2017.This was unexpected since cancer did not run in my immediate family. My dad showed signs of weight loss and anemia. He eventually was scheduled for a colonoscopy. In my gut feeling, I knew what the worst diagnosis would be and did not want to believe that it could be cancer. In mid-April, my parents and I found out that my dad had a large mass in his colon and needed surgery. This was the worst news that my family and I received. He was supposed to have surgery mid-summer but had a reaction to a cardiology test that pushed his surgery back to August. My dad had a colectomy to remove the part of the colon that had the mass. He stayed in the hospital for a few days. He had to undergo eleven rounds of chemotherapy with diagnosis of stage 3 colon cancer. With good news, he has been in remission since then.

 

While my dad was going through chemotherapy, my mom scheduled a colonoscopy that was long overdue from the beginning of the year. Unfortunately, her gastroenterologist told me he found polyps and a small mass in her colon that needed surgery to be removed. In November, she had laparoscopic colon surgery to remove the mass and was successful. She stayed in the hospital for a few days as well. Luckily, they removed everything and she did not need chemotherapy for treatment.

 

Did you have any family history of colon cancer before your parents were diagnosed?

I did have a cousin that was diagnosed before my parents.

 

Has your experience impacted your lifestyle? If yes, what are some changes you’ve made?

Exercising regularly, healthy eating habits, seeing a primary care physician yearly. 

 

Is there someone or something that you have leaned on for support during this time? How did they help you?

When my parents were both diagnosed the same year, my support group, that included my family and close friends, came to visit when my parents were in the hospital. If I needed to talk to them they were there for me. 

 

What advice would you give to others who are experiencing the same situation as you?

Definitely have a support group that you can talk to and get a colon cancer screening at age of 50 if not sooner. 

 

Brittney Waldrop 32, female, patient

How did you discover your diagnosis? How old were you at the time? Did you have symptoms? 

I was 31 years young when diagnosed. I went in for my first ever colonoscopy and they found one polyp that was cancerous. I had symptoms for about 5 years, but they were unfortunately overlooked by many doctors. I experienced extreme exhaustion; I could drink 8 cups of coffee a day and still go to sleep! I also occasionally had bloody stools, but they were bright red instead of the black they tell you to look for. Doctors kept saying that it was just hemorrhoids but didn’t look into it any further. If they did, maybe I wouldn’t be stage 4 at this point! It could’ve been caught sooner!

 

Did you have any prior knowledge about colon cancer before you were diagnosed? For instance, did you know about the symptoms and factors that lead to a higher risk of CRC? Did you know your family history?

I did not know anything and I do not have a family history of colon cancer.

 

Has your experience impacted your lifestyle? If so, what are some changes you’ve made?

Yes, it made me realize that life is short, and to live each day to the fullest! I’m weaker than I used to be, so I’ve been slowly trying to build my strength back up as well. 

 

It’s great that you’ve been taking the steps to regain your strength! Is there anything specific that you’ve been doing for this?

I have been walking, riding my stationary bike, reading my daily religion book, stretching and taking wheatgrass shots daily!

 

Is there someone or something that you have leaned on for support during this time?

Facebook support groups, my family & friends, and the hospital that I received care from.

 

What advice would you give to others who are experiencing the same situation as you?

Breathe, it’s going to be okay!

 

For more information related to colon cancer contact us today: www.coloncancerfoundation.org

Running Back To Support Foundation Efforts Through Survivor Visits, Fundraising and
Special In-Game Tribute

NEW YORK – New York Jets running back Bilal Powell and the Colon Cancer Foundation® announced today a new partnership aimed at defeating colon cancer and its devastating effects. Powell will help bring awareness to the disease, as well as generate funds in support of the Foundation’s prevention and translational research programs.

Bilal Powell New York Jet

Earlier this week, Powell visited Mt. Sinai Hospital of New York to spend time with cancer survivors and learn more about their respective experiences. During the visit, one patient – a lifelong fan of the team – provided creative input around the custom cleats Powell will wear as part of the league’s “My Cleats, My Cause” platform during Week 13. The design will pay tribute to those impacted by colorectal cancer, including Powell’s close friend who recently succumbed to the disease at the age of 36.

“This is an important issue that many people have little or no knowledge about until it’s too late,” Powell said. “The Colon Cancer Foundation is doing some excellent work in the fight against this ugly disease and I hope that together we can bring about awareness and make real change to help prevent future heartbreak and suffering.”

“We could not be more thrilled to have Bilal’s support,” said Cindy Borassi, Executive Director of the Colon Cancer Foundation. “Colon and rectal cancer can be stopped if people are aware, talk to their doctors and get screened. Fans across the nation can make a huge difference in saving lives and defeating colorectal cancer. We are so excited about this new partnership!”

This morning, Powell launched a Crowdrise campaign to directly benefit the Foundation’s commitment to spreading the word, finding a cure and providing optimal care for those most affected by the disease. Beginning today, supporters who donate $10 or more will also be entered into a raffle for the chance to win:
• Autographed memorabilia
• VIP game day experience and meet-and-greet with Powell (Sunday, Dec. 3)
• Pair of autographed, custom cleats worn by Powell during the Week 13 home game

For more information about the foundation or to donate to Powell’s campaign, visit www.crowdrise.com/bestseatsinthehouse

###

About the Colon Cancer Foundation
The Colon Cancer Foundation (coloncancerchallenge.org) is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization registered in New York state and listed by the Federal IRS as a public charity dedicated to reducing colorectal cancer incidence and death. Its mission includes supporting research into the causes and cures for colorectal cancer, increasing public awareness, educating the public about the importance of early detection and forming strategic partnerships in the fight against colorectal cancer.

About the Mount Sinai Health System
The Mount Sinai Health System is an integrated health system committed to providing distinguished care, conducting transformative research, and advancing biomedical education. Structured around seven hospital campuses and a single medical school, the Health System has an extensive ambulatory network and a range of inpatient and outpatient services—from community-based facilities to tertiary and quaternary care.

The System includes approximately 7,100 primary and specialty care physicians; 12 joint-venture ambulatory surgery centers; more than 140 ambulatory practices throughout the five boroughs of New York City, Westchester, Long Island, and Florida; and 31 affiliated community health centers. Physicians are affiliated with the renowned Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, which is ranked among the highest in the nation in National Institutes of Health funding per investigator. The Mount Sinai Hospital is in the “Honor Roll” of best hospitals in America, ranked No. 15 nationally in the 2016-2017 “Best Hospitals” issue of U.S. News & World Report. The Mount Sinai Hospital is also ranked as one of the nation’s top 20 hospitals in Geriatrics, Gastroenterology/GI Surgery, Cardiology/Heart Surgery, Diabetes/Endocrinology, Nephrology, Neurology/Neurosurgery, and Ear, Nose & Throat, and is in the top 50 in four other specialties. New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai is ranked No. 10 nationally for Ophthalmology, while Mount Sinai Beth Israel, Mount Sinai St. Luke’s, and Mount Sinai West are ranked regionally. Mount Sinai’s Kravis Children’s Hospital is ranked in seven out of ten pediatric specialties by U.S. News & World Report in “Best Children’s Hospitals.”

For more information, visit www.mountsinai.org, or find Mount Sinai on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

CONTACT:
Michael Chavez Booth
M&C Saatchi LA Sport & Entertainment
On behalf of Bilal Powell
mike.chavezbooth@mcsaatchi-la.com
619.757.6392