As we age, we make certain concessions to the fact that our bodies are not what they used to be. And for many of us, that means putting on a little weight. Some say that ‘a pound a year’ is about average. But for one California man, he had hit that mark - and then some - by the time he was 47 years old.
Hector Hernandez had, by his own admission, been ‘a big guy’ all his life, so when he started thickening around the middle, he thought he had just reached the stage in his life when weight around the middle was an inevitability.
But, over time, he noticed that he was gaining weight only around his middle, while his extremities actually began to shrink. In spite of increasing his exercise and watching what he ate, he soon tipped the scales at 300 pounds, he began thinking that maybe more ways going on than he first thought.
With the added weight, Hernandez experienced physical discomforts such as constipation, heartburn, and trouble breathing. But doctors weren’t too alarmed, telling him that different people experience weight gain in different ways.
At that point, Hernandez came to an understandable conclusion. “I thought I was just fat.”
Time went on, but Hernandez couldn’t shake the fact that what was going on around his middle was not normal. While normal fat is squishy, Hernandez noticed that his stomach felt hard. SO, he decided that he needed to get a second opinion about his gaining girth.
That’s when he received the utterly astounding news that he had been carrying around not 77 pounds of fat, but an enormous tumor that had grown out of control.
Doctors told hm that he had a ‘retroperitoneal liposarcoma’ which is an extremely rare and aggressive form of cancer. The only thing about it that was on track with his assumption was that it developed within fat cells.
While getting the news that you have cancer is not something that anyone wants to hear, but in Hernandez’ case, there was a silver lining. He learned that he was right about his growing abdomen was not a ‘beer gut.’
And the other good news as this type of tumor is now for very slow growth. That is why surgery was the recommended treatment for Hernandez’ condition.
During a six-hour procedure, the massive growth was removed and buy the time he left the hospital, he had lost over 200 pounds - 70 pounds of which were the tumor.
And the bonus? All of the health problems he had experienced before surgery had miraculously disappeared.
"My energy level is through the roof," he said. '"I don't have diabetes anymore, and I don't have high blood pressure."
As for Hernandez’ future? His type of cancer has a five-year survival rate of 40-60% with a recurrence rate of over 2/3. Please join us in praying for a good outcome.