Cancer patient describes bliss after eating for the first time in three months
PUBLISHED: 15:46 16 May 2019 | UPDATED: 16:47 16 May 2019
A Thetford man has described the bliss of being able to eat again as he battles oesophagus cancer.
Mark Lowther, 51, of Bury Road, was diagnosed with the disease in February this year.
Due to the tumour being close to the opening of his stomach he has been unable to eat solid food as it would become blocked.
He said: "I went home one evening to have my dinner and I said to my partner I don't feel so well and just threw-up a lot of blood.
"I contacted the doctor in the morning and the following day I just had test after test and scans.
"It restricts my eating so I couldn't eat anything other than liquids. I just feels as if your food pipe is full straight away and the only thing I could do was reflux and get rid of it."
Mr Lowther has been living on a diet of high calorie protein shakes. One of the drinks he was able to make had 1,200 calories in just a pint.
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But now he is getting back to eating normally again.
Mr Lowther said: "I have done 62 hours of chemotherapy now and I was able to eat a proper meal for the first time so the tumour is shrinking.
"It was bliss when I had a slice of pizza. With the disease my teeth have fallen out so I only have one left so chewing is also against the grain.
"My last treatment of chemo felt like being beaten up from the inside but this time it has gone quite smoothly, I'm almost looking forward to my next sessions."
A fundraising event was held at The Albion in Castle Road to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support. A barbecue and raffle was held with attendees wearing wigs and fancy dress after Mr Lowther lost beard due to chemotherapy.
"It was fantastic," Mr Lowther added, "initially we were trying to raise about £500 for charity but it ended up as £1,300.
"The vast majority of people were dressed up in wigs and as with my diagnosis it was wear a wig for Mark day.
"The people in Thetford really have great hearts, they pull together in such a brilliant way. Dave Routledge, the owner of The Albion, what he laid on for us was breathtaking and he paid for all of the food."
Mr Lowther is now preparing for an operation at Addenbrooke's Hosptial, Cambridge, where doctors will remove his oesophagus.