Soyinka told BBC Life Clinic’s Charles Mgbolu at his Ogun State home in an interview published on Tuesday that he was diagnosed with early-stage prostate cancer in 2014 when he went for a routine medical check-up.
“It hadn’t yet gotten to the stage where it was non-reversible and so (the doctor) gave us a number of guidelines. I say us because he wanted to make sure that my wife made sure that I followed it. He sensed that I wasn’t going to be a very good patient. So he spoke to her most of the time rather than me,” he said.
The professor of English used an advanced technology known as proton therapy, which is said to be unavailable yet in Nigeria, to treat the disease.
Soyinka queried the reason why people go outside the country “to receive the kind of treatment which is affordable in this nation.”
According to the BBC, 13,000 cases of prostate cancer were reported in Nigeria in 2018.
The 85-year-old, however, said that the treatment for him was an ‘easy ride’.
He added: “I don’t go to the gym and I do not jog. I look at people who are jogging on the streets, some of them should go and jog behind walls. They look ridiculous. But I believe that my normal active life is more than sufficient. At least if I feel sluggish, I take a walk. If I feel very, very sluggish, I take my gun and go in the bush and go hunting.”
Soyinka is an advocate of cancer awareness and is on the board of the African Cancer Centre.
Nobel winner Wole Soyinka’s journey with prostate cancer
When Professor Wole Soyinka went for a routine medical check-up in 2014, the doctor asked him to take more tests. It was then that Soyinka was diagnosed with early-stage prostate cancer.
That was five years ago. Since then, after undergoing successful treatment, the 85-year-old is in good health.
The professor says he takes pretty good care of himself and loves spending time outdoors.
BBC Life Clinic’s Charles Mgbolu met him at his village in Ogun state in south-west Nigeria and heard his story of resilience and determination, but also the crucial role his wife played in the process.
Source :qed and BBC