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Pahrump woman's leukemia diagnosis highlights need for regular health screenings

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Posted at 12:49 PM, Aug 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-27 02:07:14-04

PAHRUMP (KTNV) — The pandemic has kept many away from regular screenings and check-ups with their doctor. Now, a Pahrump woman is sharing her health story in hopes that others make regular health screenings a part of their schedules.

Suzie Aguiar got the diagnosis in March: Chronic Myeloid Leukemia.

“Getting to that diagnosis was a long process. I went to the eye doctor and he said there’s something going on with you medically and I needed to get into my doctor immediately,” said Aguiar.

Aguiar’s primary physician was booked for months, but the team at Southwest Medical in Pahrump got her in the next day.

Family nurse practitioner Royal Bradley says it’s a good thing they did because her health was almost to the point of no return.

“It could have been life-threatening as it was. It was almost to that point where it couldn’t be taken care of,” said Bradley.

With her white blood cell count to 550,000, doctors told Aguiar she was at risk for heart attack, stroke, liver failure, and kidney failure.

Prior to her medical tests, Aguilar says she didn’t have any symptoms aside from feeling tired.

“I really didn’t have any other symptoms, so why would I think I have leukemia? If I would have waited for that other doctor two months later, I can’t imagine how high my white blood cell count would have gone,” Aguiar said.

After a nearly two-week hospital stay and ongoing cancer treatment, Aguiar is back at work helping veterans at the VFW in Pahrump.

Her battle with leukemia is lifelong, but she’s grateful to the team at Southwest Medical for giving her a fighting chance.

Now, she’s urging others to fight for their health by getting regular check-ups, even when you’re feeling healthy.

“You only get one life and one body and you have to take care of it,” Aguiar said.