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Charles Aguillon: Staying in Tune with Your Body

Charles Aguillon

We need to be advocates for checking in with our doctor on our health journey.”

Charles Aguillon
Colon Cancer, Rectal Cancer

For Charles Aguillon, life tends to march to the beat of its own drum. As a busy educator overseeing the fine arts program at his local school district and teaching music to youth groups, Charles found himself putting his life on hold due to constant digestive issues. His search for answers included trying different diets, searching for information online, and seeking treatment from a gastroenterologist. This trail ultimately led to a colorectal cancer diagnosis.

Determined to Fight

While more than 90% of colorectal cancer cases are diagnosed in adults 50 years and older, recent research indicates a rise in cases among younger adults, prompting the American Cancer Society to update its recommendation for adults with average risk to begin screening at age 45.

Charles was 48 years old when he was screened and diagnosed with colorectal cancer in July 2019. That’s when he was introduced to Jeff Yorio, M.D., medical oncologist at Texas Oncology–Austin Central. From the start of his cancer journey, Charles said he placed full trust in Dr. Yorio and his care team.

“I told Dr. Yorio from day one that I was going to rely on my doctors,” Charles said. “You have to work as a team with your care team. I was blessed to have a successful treatment that improved my quality of life.”

Under Dr. Yorio’s care, Charles assumed a rigorous regimen, but he was determined to fight.

“When we developed his treatment plan, which included chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery over the span of eight to nine months, Charles took it step-by-step and was determined to get through it,” said Yorio.

Carrying an Important Tune

Since his diagnosis, Charles became a vocal advocate for others to continue their cancer screenings and pay attention to changes in their body.

Charles regularly used his Facebook page to update his friends and family about his cancer journey, and today he continues to encourage them to keep up with their regular screenings and be aware of unusual symptoms.

“I was open and honest about what I was going through,” Charles said. “I’ve been told by friends that they are grateful that I shared my story because it may be an uncomfortable topic to talk about, but we need to be advocates for checking in with our doctor on our health journey.”

Now cancer-free, Charles continues to advocate for others to prioritize and pay attention to their health.

“Charles has helped turn this diagnosis into a positive outcome by becoming an advocate for colorectal cancer awareness,” said Dr. Yorio. “Perhaps that stems from his life in education. It’s really important for young people like him to tell their story. It helps others realize some of the early warning signs of colorectal cancer.”

The information included in this testimonial is based on one patient’s unique experience and is not intended to represent all patient outcomes or expectations.