By Cassidy Morrison Senior Health Reporter For Dailymail.Com
18:18 10 Nov 2023, updated 18:24 10 Nov 2023
- Doctors found stage 3 colon cancer which will require years of chemotherapy
- They had to remove her uterus which had a baseball-sized tumor ‘cemented’ to it
- READ MORE: Colorectal cancer to double in people under 40 by 2030
A Canadian woman who went into colon repair surgery was shocked to wake up and find that doctors had removed her womb.
The operation, which was to repair a ruptured colon, led to the discovery of stage 3 colon cancer and a baseball-sized tumor on her uterus.
Doctors made the call to remove her womb and cervix- rendering the 38-year-old infertile.
Devlynn Cyr, a former paramedic in Alberta, said: ‘I couldn’t process the hysterectomy because I’m like, “I now don’t have an option of children?”’
Mrs Cyr went to her area hospital for an ostomy, which would see doctors create an opening in the abdomen that allows bodily waste to drain from the intestines.
When she awoke from the surgery, she learned that doctors had to remove her uterus and cervix in a total hysterectomy after finding a baseball-sized tumor ‘cemented’ to her womb.
Mrs Cyr said her heart sank when she learned the news from her husband Greg. There is no indication yet whether the Cyrs plan to take legal action.
In the lead-up to the surgery, Mrs Cyr had been experiencing abdominal pain and constipation that doctors had first chalked up to something else such as Crohn’s disease.
In the middle of the procedure to surgically repair a hole in the lining of her colon, doctors discovered she had stage three colon cancer.
Doctors later said her uterus and fallopian tubes were ‘like cement’ because of the cancer and they had to be removed.
Mrs Cyr was under anesthesia when the cancer was discovered and her husband Greg received the news that damage done to her reproductive organs was irreversible.
Mr Cyr said: ‘Okay, so this is happening and this just got a lot more real’ adding that he was afraid his wife of six months would ‘be mad at me and resent me for having to make that decision. We had talked about having children.’
Devlynn was also upset to learn that doctors failed to retrieve healthy eggs from her ovaries before removing her uterus.
She said: ‘Did they retrieve some eggs for me to be able to have children in the future? Like, do they even think of these things?’
The pain of losing the ability to give birth naturally was worsened with the knowledge that Devlynn will need to undergo chemotherapy for her stage 3 colon cancer for the long term.
She told her followers on TikTok: ‘There is no hope for me getting out of chemo unless I do not want to survive this cancer.
‘They told me radiation is now something that I need to do given my family history, my dad having cancer twice, his mother having colon cancer.’
A person with a family history of colon cancer has about double the risk of getting it. People over 50 are also more vulnerable to the disease.
Colorectal cancer is the third-most common type of cancer diagnosed in men and women in the US.
An estimated 107,000 new cases of colon cancer will be diagnosed in 2023, along with 46,000 new cases of rectal cancer.
Rates of colon cancer are skyrocketing among younger adults and scientists are still grappling with possible causes, which could include unhealthy lifestyle practices.
Mystery of colon cancer epidemic among young people in America
Data shows diagnoses in the group have nearly doubled in 25 years, with them now making up 20 percent of all diagnoses compared to 11 percent in 1995.
The American Cancer Society reported in March that the rate of colon cancer in people aged 50 nationwide was now nearly 60 per 100,000.
For comparison, between 1975 to 1979 the rate was around 40 per 100,000 – indicating a 50 percent increase in around 45 years.
About 43 percent of diagnoses were in people aged 45 to 49 years old.
Part of what makes colorectal cancer difficult to diagnose is its symptoms, which can often be attributed to other conditions.
Many younger patients are often misdiagnosed because symptoms can look like other disorders, which delays treatment and decreases the odds of survival.
A survey conducted by the American Cancer Society in 2019 reported that more than two-thirds of colon cancer patients saw at least two doctors before getting an accurate diagnosis and some had to go to as many as four doctors.
The ACS, an influential body that sets guidelines for appropriate care, decided just five years ago that it would revise its colon cancer screening recommendation, lowering the age from 50 to 45.
If detected early before spreading to other parts of the body – stages one and two – colon cancer has a five-year survival rate of about 91 percent.
Stage three cancer means cancer cells have been found in lymph nodes in surrounding tissues, a diagnosis with a 72 percent five-year survival rate.
Once the cancer has spread further throughout the body, such as to the bones, liver, or lungs, the odds of survival plummet to 14 percent.