Danielle's story

No matter how old you are, or how fit and healthy you appear, if something doesn’t feel right get checked.

When Danielle 28 started to experience bowel symptoms she saw her doctor, after being diagnosed with bowel cancer she underwent surgery.

But when things still didn’t feel right Danielle sought the expertise of Prof Sina Dorudi, at The London Digestive Centre. Read more about her bowel cancer diagnosis and treatment below.

How it started

In 2012, Danielle was a busy young lawyer, living in Amsterdam with her boyfriend.  

As a fit and healthy 28 year old, Danielle was concerned when she started to experience persistent abdominal pain and noticed a change in her bowel movements, so booked herself an appointment with her GP to check the symptoms out.  

After initially being told the symptoms were not a serious concern Danielle continued to lead her daily life as usual however, the pain in her abdomen continued to get worse – to the point where Danielle was in so much pain that she collapsed. By this point Danielle was also experiencing fatigue and when she started vomiting after eating she went straight to the hospital, where she underwent a scan. The scan showed that her intestines were packed and the doctor suggested further testing. 

Danielle describes that she was in agonising pain following the hospital visit and was soon readmitted to a ward and placed on a morphine drip. 

Due to her ongoing illness, at this stage both Danielle and her employer decided that it would be best for Danielle to move back to London, to receive further treatment.  

Upon arriving back in London, Danielle had a colonoscopy which revealed a tumour in her bowel, Danielle was advised that she needed to undergo keyhole surgery to remove the tumour however, following the operation Danielle still didn’t feel ‘right’, and explains that she was still feeling fatigue and in a lot of discomfort. 

Referral to a specialist

In 2013 Danielle was referred to see Professor Sina Dorudi at the London Digestive Centre, part of HCA Healthcare UK. Professor Dorudi discovered that the cancer had affected some of Danielle’s lymph nodes close to her bowel. These lymph nodes had not been removed during the initial surgery, therefore he recommended that Danielle should undergo open surgery immediately to remove more of her colon and the surrounding lymph nodes. 

Danielle says that following this surgery she felt ‘well’ again and knew the operation had been successful. Over the last five years, Danielle has been having regular checks to ensure there are no further signs of the cancer, and has recently received her five years all clear result. 


Recovery and raising awareness

After recovering from her illness and returning to her career as a lawyer, in 2015 Danielle and her boyfriend, Charlie, decided to tie the knot – and a year later, welcomed their beautiful daughter.  

As a result of her personal experience, Danielle (now 34) is very keen to raise awareness of the risks of bowel cancer and advises everyone – no matter how old you are, and how fit and healthy you appear – to be mindful of any changes to your body and seek medical advice immediately if you feel something isn’t right.

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This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.