CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) -
A Heartland woman became a cancer specialist and now returns home to help the people where she grew up.
"It's always nice to come home," said Sarah Colwick.
Colwick graduated from Sikeston High School.
She traveled to Kansas City for college and medical school. She went to Connecticut for residency, and Iowa for a fellowship.
Now, she's circled back to the Heartland and said she's glad to finally be home.
"It's good to be back close to family, it's good to be back in the Midwest and South, I enjoyed my time visiting other parts of the county, but it's always nice to come home," said Colwick.
Colwick is a new breast cancer specialist at Saint Francis Medical Center.
She wanted to specialize in this unique cancer field while in medical school.
"Unlike other aspects of surgery, it's a little more involved, you follow patients for years on out, you get to really know the patient, you get to know their family, it's a much more personal aspect of medicine," said Colwick.
Colwick will take that personal journey with patients, from the first step of diagnosis to the final cancer-free visit, not to mention all the surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy in between.
"It's a very intense journey, but it's a very rewarding one as well," said Colwick.
Colwick will split her time between visiting with patients in the clinic and performing surgeries like mastectomies and lumpectomies.
Surgeries that are all part of an emotional job.
"You always have to look does the bad and the good balance each other out, and to me it does. Is it absolutely horrible to tell a patient that she has breast cancer, yes very much so, but you have to look at the end of the journey when they are five years out. They're considered cured, they have their life back, and that is one of the most rewarding things that can happen in medicine," said Colwick.
Colwick wants to stress the importance of an annual mammogram. She said her mission in the Heartland is to promote breast cancer awareness.