It took 7 years, and more than 10 doctors in different countries to discover that my greatest enemy and “flaw” was actually what saved me.
Me tomó 7 años y más de 10 médicos de diferentes países para descubrir que mi mayor enemigo y “defecto” era en realidad lo que me salvó.
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I started losing my hair around age 12. Of course everyone sheds a certain amount of hair every day but mine was kind of drastic. I remember that several times I passed my hand through my hair and falling hair strands would come off. So it was just the normal hair loss all of us experience. Of course with such a condition so strange came the famous and inevitable bullying. The struggle of being a teenager right?I started almost immediately to seek medical help when all this started. The first time I went to a doctor they told me it was anemia. Then the next time I had a lack of vitamins. And those were the same diagnoses for more than 7 doctors. Some even I had been diagnosed with alopecia or blood disorders.
But despite having a very noticeable problem it seemed like I was perfectly healthy. Every one of them had their own “hair and nails growing kit”, some of them worked for a while but never enough to actually solve the problem.When I was 16 I decided to take a break from all that and just try the most natural way of hair growing, eating healthy and applying natural stuff. When I turned 17, I started to notice my back was presenting little troubles; it started to hurt but nothing major.By the time I turned 18 it became a huge problem; almost every week I had back pains.
I always thought that was normal due to college stress but I should have listen to my body more carefully. The warning signs were all there I just decided to ignore them. Uncontrollable thirst, rapid fatigue, disgust for certain foods, and of course slow or no hair growing.
When I turned 19 I thought I was OK with myself, I had accepted that this is who I was and that there was probably not much room for change.It took a very embarrassing moment in a mall to make me search for help again. I gave doctors a last chance, luckily it was the only one I needed. The last dermatologist I went to ran all tests again; like usual everything was fine, but she was the only one to go the extra mile and check if I really had a polycystic ovary. So she ordered a CT scan and there it was: the reason of all my problems and “flaws”. A 3.5cm diameter pancreatic tumor located in the tail. Just close enough to the spleen and the adrenal gland to show that it was the origins of all my problems.
Little did I know how lucky and blessed it was to be diagnosed on time. Very few people realize that they have this type of tumors, most of them get to know of it when it is already too late. 16 days after my diagnosis I had surgery to remove it which resulted in the tail of my pancreas and my spleen to be removed.
The recovery is still difficult but I am quite lucky to say, “I survived a pancreatic tumor”
It took 10 doctors, 7 years, and one surgery to help me learn that everything happens for a reason and to take everything one step at a time, in my case, one hair at a time.