Bob Collymore Cancer: Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore has revealed that he was misdiagnosed with Vitamin D deficiency while in reality he had cancer.
Collymore revealed this during an interview on Citizen TV on Wednesday night.
“I use to get tired and have high temperatures from time to time. It got so bad that I could not make it to company events,” he said. He further noted that the high temperatures would sometimes last for 24 hours.
“During a visit to Morocco, I started experiencing flu-like symptoms. I noticed a pain in the bones of my chin and that my body would start shaking. I thought to myself that ‘it’s not something you experience unless you kick something really hard’.”
After that, Collymore said, he called his wife who thought the symptoms were for malaria.
“My wife Wambui is really good in self diagnosis. She thought I had malaria. I also went to a doctor in Nairobi who said I had a vitamin D deficiency,” he said. “I returned to Nairobi for check-ups and was given supplements.”
Dissatisfied with the diagnosis, Collymore sought a second opinion from another doctor at Nairobi Hospital.
“He did about 30 blood tests but said he could not find the problem. He needed to do more tests which meant I had to be admitted. It was the first time I was admitted at the hospital,” he said.
The doctor suspected a blood issue but referred the CEO to a specialist in the UK since he is not an expert on the subject.
“I left that very night to London and it was there that a haematologist diagnosed me with acute myeloid leukemia – a type of cancer that starts in the blood-forming cells of the bone marrow and is curable,” he said.
“I was diagnosed with cancer. The doctors told me at the time that I had probably had it for about six months. He said I was fine but noted that the treatment would he harsh and would take six to nine months.
“Being diagnosed with cancer was not a big deal. I thought this was going to be tough I called my team and told them to put systems in place for when I would be away,” he said.