Real Men Wear Gowns: Tough guys take on colon cancer and win

THV11's Rolly Hoyt introduces us to a pair of tough guys, one a familiar face on THV11 This Morning, trying to convince you otherwise.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- Most men usually need to be reminded to go see their doctor regularly. Whether they put it off, just don't do it altogether or think they're too tough, some men think they can muscle their way through any scrapes or sores along the way.

But we have found that most times, you can’t.

THV11’s Rolly Hoyt introduced us to a pair of tough guys, one a familiar face on THV11 This Morning, trying to convince you otherwise.

Sergeant Brian Dedrick doesn't have to walk a beat anymore, but he does have to make regular trips to his clinic.

“I went to see a colon doctor, and he had done a colonoscopy probably a month later. And found out I had colon cancer,” Dedrick said.

You may recognize Sgt. Dedrick. He's the man you see on TV when something happens in North Little Rock.

“Shootings. Robberies. Bank Robberies. Anything like that I usually respond to the scene and update the media.”

He's good at distilling bad news, but three years ago, he got the bad news.

“First thing that went through my mind is well I never thought it would happen to me.”

But there he was in his 40s with years of experience protecting and serving going under the knife.

Enter Doctor Lance Burns. The Canada native looks like Clark Kent.

It's hard to believe he was once one of the toughest guys in minor league professional hockey. He went from being good with a hockey stick, to wielding a scalpel blade cutting out colon cancers.

“We did a laparoscopic lower anterior resection. Which is removing about a foot of his colon and putting him back together again,” said Dr. Burns.

That's because Burns got it all. In his playing days, he was a center, scoring goals and dishing assists.

As a surgeon, now he's the goalie, the last line of defense. And he needs an assist from primary care doctors to help find stuff early.

“The primary care doctor knows to have certain tests done at certain ages, but we certainly don't want to wait until a problem exists before performing a colonoscopy,” said Dr. Burns.

So don't tough it out. Trust your instincts, tough guy.

“My oncologist told me that if you think something's wrong, there's a good chance that there probably is,” said Dedrick.

And if you're worried about missing work, know that Sergeant Dedrick missed just six weeks after his colon surgery.

He even managed to work four days a week while undergoing chemotherapy.

Today he has a clean bill of health. That's likely not the case if he hadn't traded his flack-jacket for a hospital gown three years ago.

© 2017 KTHV-TV


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