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Mike’s full story

Mike Hayward (Retired – worked in marketing for an insurance company)

After being diagnosed with bowel cancer in July 2021, Mike got in contact with QuestPrehab and quickly began a personalised prehabilitation programme. With surgery booked for September 20th, Mike knew he had just under two months to get mentally and physically prepared before his operation.

“I was looking for help and advice about how to make my chances of a successful operation and recovery better by being proactive,” he recalls. “From the start and throughout my programme, I had fortnightly Zoom calls with my Prehabilitation Instructor,
Roberto. Along with providing me with concrete help and advice on diet and exercise, I was able to ask him about his experience of working with people with similar diagnoses.”

“The other thing is with cancer you are always getting stressed waiting for the next appointment. There are a lot of them, and you can quickly end up being overwhelmed with armfuls of pamphlets and booklets. So having someone like Roberto talk to who can help ease the worrying and identify the important points in all the paperwork is very helpful.”

In the run-up to his operation, Mike joined a variety of online yoga, exercise workouts and boxing classes. He also sought advice on a range of issues, including the importance of adopting a positive approach to the challenges he faced.

“The NHS does provide a dedicated nurse for cancer patients – but I had to leave messages and usually was called back by different person on each occasion who didn’t know me,” he said. “QuestPrehab offered a very personalised service … I had someone who effectively ‘held my hand’ and offered straightforward advice and provided clear answers to my questions.”

Following his operation, Mike received more support from Roberto – and six weeks after surgery, he resumed exercise classes before starting a gruelling round of chemotherapy that lasted two months.

“The support I received during my chemotherapy was important,” he recalled. “It really can make you feel very ill and down and having regular catch-ups really helped me develop a positive mindset and to approach things in a confident way.”

When he felt stronger after completing his chemotherapy, Mike resumed his QuestPrehab programme and exercise classes for another three months – and the good news is that all his first two years check-ups have come back clear.

“I’m probably in the best place I can be considering I have had cancer – and QuestPrehab definitely played a significant part getting me to this stage. Nothing is guaranteed. With my particular tumour, there is a 70% chance it will not recur in five years – and I think I am very much in the best place to be in the 7 in 10!”

“My advice to others is to be willing to talk and ask questions and get your life back to normal as soon as possible. Try to be active as it can play a key role in helping to save your life.”

Quest Prehab - digital prehab and virtual prehabilitation service

If you have recently been diagnosed with Cancer or are in need of surgery, you could benefit from prehabilitation. Please contact us to find out how we can help you prepare for your treatment. QuestPrehab™ is available to patients across the UK.