Noorhashimah is the loving embrace behind Malaysia’s talented artist, Wan Jamila
Call for colon cancer awareness
AN estimated 60 per cent of cancer prognosis among patients in Malaysia is only detected at later stages of the dreaded disease. The big C is usually only detected at Stage III and IV after it has struck its victims, said Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad.
One of the primary causes of deaths in Malaysia is colon cancer and regardless of this, the lack of awareness of the symptoms and signs of colon cancer remains low, which causes delay in presentation and treatment. The awareness of the prevalence of colorectal cancer is indeed very low and frightening.
In Malaysia, colorectal cancer is the second most common cancer in males and the third most common cancer in females and it is also the third highest cause of cancer deaths amongst women after breast cancer and cervical cancers. Get yours checked today!— The Health
In 2018, I started to feel the same tiredness again. The doctors saw something at the lymph nodes near the heart but there was no growth after observation. However within a span of six months, it grew to a massive 5.6 centimetres. I was ordered to start treatment – I’m currently at Stage 4.”
Only recently for National Day, 17-year-old artist with autism, Wan Jamila Wan Shaiful Bahri filled so many Malaysians with pride and amazement with her Putrajaya signage. Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad had personally picked Wan Jamila’s design for National Day. The Health met up with proud mother, Noorhashimah Noordin who has actually been battling with colon cancer for the past few years.
The lingering concern
Although all is well with her daughter’s career, Noorhashimah herself is not free from concerns.“I realised I was getting tired very easily. In May 2016, I signed my two daughters and myself up for an overseas tour covering six different countries. I had already retired from lecturing in Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), and I wanted to focus completely on Jamila. However, during the trip, I was having difficulties walking and even bending down. When I came back from the trip, I developed needle like pains and bloatedness. When I went to the clinic, they dismissed it as gastric issues and gave me gastric medicine.“However, I just became worse. I told my son who was studying to be a doctor about my pains and he told me it sounds very critical and told me to go to the hospital. At the hospital, the doctor took a blood test and realised something was amiss from the results. He immediately requested for me to be admitted and informed me that he has scheduled an appointment to meet the colon specialist the following day,” she explains.
The harrowing find
During the appointment with the colon specialist, Noorhashimah underwent a CT scan and the scan showed there was a growth. To add to the horror, the specialist told her that was only one millimeter of space left in her colon, the growth had almost taken up her entire colon. That explained why she was in pain all the time and the constant bloatedness. “He gave me two choices, whether I proceed with the operation the next day or the day after that. It was that urgent because apparently my colon was about to burst,” she recalled.The growth was then sent to the lab and it was identified at cancerous, at Stage 2B. “My doctor proposed I meet an oncology specialist. After recovering from the operation, I took extra special care of my dietary intake for a couple of months but then I slowly went back to my old eating habits.”
The continued battle
“In 2018, I started to feel the same tiredness again. The doctors saw something at the lymph nodes near the heart but there was no growth after observation. However, within a span of six months, it grew to a massive 5.6 centimetres. I was ordered to start treatment – I’m currently at Stage 4.”Every two weeks, Noorhashimah has to go for chemotherapy for the cancer of the lymph nodes. She’s currently at the second cycle of chemotherapy. Her condition doesn’t waiver her efforts for her daughter, however, and she continues to ensure Jamila is healthy and independent.— The Health