Air Force

On last Christmas Eve I began to suffer from severe stomach pain. I was driven to the hospital at Nellis Air Force Base where I was admitted and treated. They thought I had appendicitis. I refused surgery, and instead requested the preferred treatment in Europe – treatment with huge doses of antibiotics. That worked.

In the meantime, I had an abdominal MRI, an abdominal CT Scan and an abdominal X-Ray. These medical tools resulted in my being scheduled for an upper and lower colonoscopy.

The lower colonoscopy detected a malignancy in one of the four biopsy samples taken.

After further tests and consultations I was scheduled for a right hemicolectomy, which is the removal of that part of the colon on the right hand side of your body and which also removes the cecum and the appendix. “Google” it.

At age 50 and for each 5 years thereafter, it is recommended that men and women have a colonoscopy. African-Americans should begin having colonoscopies at age 45 and every five years thereafter. I did. I had the last one in 2008 and was not scheduled for another until 2013. Yet, a cancer was growing in my colon.

If you are a friend of mine and you have reached that wonderful age of either 45 years or 50 years, please work with your medical team and schedule your colonoscopy. If you are older than 45 or 50 and you haven’t yet had a colonoscopy, get one. After the first one, get one every five years unless there are indications that you should schedule one earlier. They don’t hurt. Sometimes funny jokes are make about the procedure but it does save lives.

I don’t know what health care plan you have but I understand that most plans will pay for colonoscopies.

If you are a veteran, the Veterans Administration will usually pay for your colonoscopy and might even provide you with full health care protection.

“Google” has wealths of information that you might find instructive and useful.

Finally, please encourage everyone you know and care about who might be in the years where they should get or be getting a colonoscopy to do so.

I had my surgery last week. I’m a little weak. I’m a little uncomfortable. But that will pass.


Lawrence E. Braxton
7100 Pirates Cove Road, #1100
Las Vegas, NV 89145

“And you would think that after the results of this experiment in trickle-down economics were made painfully clear, that the proponents of this theory might show some humility, might moderate their views a bit. You’d think they’d say, you know what, maybe some rules and regulations are necessary to protect the economy…Maybe, just maybe, at a time of growing debt and widening inequality, we should hold off on giving the wealthiest Americans another round of big tax cuts. Maybe when we know that most of today’s middle-class jobs require more than a high school degree, we shouldn’t gut education, or lay off thousands of teachers…” President Barack Obama, April 3, 2012