Metro Detroit doctor ignores symptoms he had no idea were signs of rare nose cancer

Posted: 4:50 PM, Oct 04, 2018
Updated: 2018-10-04 21:21:15Z
Metro Detroit doctor ignores sign of rare cancer
Metro Detroit doctor ignores sign of rare cancer

When a local doctor ignored some symptoms, he had no idea those were signs of a rare nose cancer.

Luckily, his physician was able to catch it and thanks to a new type of radiation at Beaumont Hospital, he is back treating his patients.

Dr. Sammit Sabharwal explained, “I know what that is. I’m not even going to get evidence to figure out if I’m right or not.”

Dr. Sabharwal incorrectly diagnosed himself a couple of years ago when the right side of his nose would run often.

He didn’t put too much thought into it, figuring it was a nose polyp.

Almost three years later, he noticed his sense of smell decrease and with a new baby, his wife said Dr. Sabharwal wasn’t smelling dirty diapers.

Turns out this father of two had a rare form of cancer in his nose.

“So much crying, so much anger, yelling in the shower, punching walls, just thinking I wouldn’t be there for my kids.”

The process of treating the tumor was unique. It was about seven centimeters long sitting between his eyes.

Conventional radiation treatment could leave him with brain damage and vision loss.

“I obviously can’t continue my life and my profession with brain damage and not being able to see.”

So he went to Beaumont Hospital’s Proton Therapy Center earlier this year.

“It hit a personal level with me,” said Dr. Rohan Deraniyagala.

He treated Dr. Sabharwal, becoming an advocate for him when the insurance company didn’t want to pay for the procedure.

Proton therapy would treat the area of the tumor but would not harm his eyes or brain.

Dr. Rohan Deraniyagala explained,“If you have a symptom of the head and neck, a problem that’s going on, don’t ignore it.”

Just last month Dr. Sabharwal got the clear, so he’s no longer the patient.

He said,“I just had the thought, ‘I’m as bad as my patients, ignoring my symptoms, not seeing the doctor.’”

Dr. Sabharwal said this experience has made him a better doctor.

“I’m harder on my patients, if there is something I’ve been dealing with that for years. No you get that checked out,” he added.

Now, he hopes our viewers hear that message loud and clear.