The choice of oncology

« While I was a first year medical student, my best friend got married. I was the groomsman in this beautiful wedding. Shortly after returning from honeymoon, his wife got genital bleeding and was diagnosed with widespread cancer. At the time, in the 1970s, there was still no oncology specialty, strictly speaking. She underwent surgery, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, a chemotherapy that was still in its infancy and was terrible for patients. After two years, the clinical director told my friend she was in remission.
She recovered, resumed her medical studies, and finally became an ophthalmologist. Unfortunately she divorced, cancer often destroys couples.

I saw her dead, I thought she was going to disappear. A terrible contrast between the images I had of her at the wedding, beautiful, and then sick, bald, skinny. I was amazed to see life back into her body, her hair grow back and the color back in her face, and I thought that’s it, I want to be an oncologist. Because there is still so much to discover to treat these patients. »

David Khayat