A quick exam of my hoarse throat led to a life-saving diagnosis of aggressive cancer

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When Cian Smith was a teenager, he had a bright future in front of the GAA. The now 33-year-old was tipped for a place in Roscommon’s U21 football team when a totally unexpected diagnosis threw his sports career and, for a time, his life, totally sidetracked.

One evening in August 2007, I was coming home from training and my dad was inside talking to someone, ”he says. “I said hello, I had a bit of a joke and the man, Nash Patil, who happened to be an ENT consultant, told me I looked pretty hoarse. I had always sounded like that and it was okay, but he asked if I could come see him in his clinic so he could check it out.

“Just to be polite I agreed, but as soon as he left I told my dad it was completely unnecessary because there was nothing wrong with me, and as far as I was concerned. , that was the end of the story. But two weeks later I received a meeting letter in the mail, and although I still thought it was unnecessary, my father encouraged me to to go because he said Mr. Patil was a lovely man and it wouldn’t hurt. I said very well and continued, expecting a quick check before I was sent home.


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