OFW with liver cancer dies of cardiac arrest

The cause of death of an overseas Filipino worker (OFW) in Dubai, Ma. Monica Manuel, 27, has caused many OFWs anxious and worried about their health.  They fear that they might have a latent disease whose symptoms are not felt and would just suddenly kill them when it finally kicks in.

Ma. Monica died of cardiac arrest in Dubai on September 27. Her mother, Rita Manuel, disclosed that her daughter was diagnosed with stage 4 liver cancer last August.  There were no noticeable symptoms that could have alarmed her that she had liver cancer and could have sought treatment earlier.  Her mother said that she only had flu and colds in July this year that lasted for more than a month.

She thought she only had flu according to her mother. But last August she started having severe pain in the upper right portion of her abdomen which was unbearable and this brought her to the hospital.

A medical checkup revealed that she had a tumor in the left lobe of her liver the size of a tennis ball that blocked the flow of oxygen. She died of cardiac arrest last September 27.

Rita recalled her chats with her daughter, Ma. Monica. “When we chat nung August, sabi niya, ‘Ma, meron pa rin akong ubo at sipon. Then nilagnat na siya. Umiiyak na ako. Sabi ko, ‘Umuwi ka na para mapatingnan ka namin dito,’” she said.

“Sabi niya, ‘Oo, Ma, tatapusin ko lang ang kontrata ko hanggang November 11 para makuha ko ang gratuity ko,’” she added.

“Maraming salamat po. We are very thankful sa government, particularly sa Embassy, sa Consulate at sa OWWA, kay Sen. Bong Go, sa mga kaibigan niya na tumulong talaga para mapabilis ang pag-uwi ng aking anak,” Rita was quoted as saying.

The American Cancer Society said in this article, “signs and symptoms of liver cancer often do not show up until the later stages of the disease, but sometimes they may show up sooner.”  It is always advisable to go for a check up if you feel anything strange happening on your body so that if there is any disease, you can get treatment earlier and it will not worsen your condition.  Some of the most common symptoms of liver cancer are:

  • Weight loss (without trying)
  • Loss of appetite
  • Feeling very full after a small meal
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • An enlarged liver, felt as fullness under the ribs on the right side
  • An enlarged spleen, felt as fullness under the ribs on the left side
  • Pain in the abdomen (belly) or near the right shoulder blade
  • Swelling or fluid build-up in the abdomen (belly)
  • Itching
  • Yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice)
  • Other symptoms can include fever, enlarged veins on the belly that can be seen through the skin, and abnormal bruising or bleeding.

Having one or more of the symptoms, however, does not mean that you have liver cancer.  These symptoms may be the symptoms of other diseases, as well.  If you feel any of these symptoms and they are chronic, seek a medical check up so that the cause of the disease may be treated.  Prevention is always better than cure.

Source: GMA News Online

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