Declared fit to travel, a Quebecer finds himself stuck with cancer in Mexico

Thinking of being recovered, and despite back pain, a Quebecer found himself stuck in Mexico because of a recurrence of cancer that would not have been diagnosed by his doctors in Montreal.

The holidays turned tragic for Laurent Bigras and his family, who left for Mexico in early March. As the stay was coming to an end, the father of the family had to be hospitalized in Mexico City because of intense back pain, according to Global News.

The family are searching for answers after saying they received medical clearance to travel and then found out the cancer had returned over the holidays.

Before their trip, Ms Chavez told doctors that her husband had recently started having back pain.

Mr. Bigras had been diagnosed with lymphoma in October 2020 and had undergone chemotherapy at the Hôpital du Sacré-Coeur in Montreal until February 2021.

In remission, he had gradually started to work again in January 2022, but back pain would have appeared in winter.

He reportedly went to the emergency room more than once and made follow-up appointments, according to his wife.

Blood tests and other examinations carried out raised no red flags at the time. The other symptoms, like the weight loss and sweating he experienced when he was first diagnosed, haven’t resurfaced either.

Mr. Bigras would have received anti-inflammatories to relieve the pain. Suspecting that the problem was muscle pain, the medical team had prescribed anti-inflammatories to the patient.

For safety, they would have asked their doctor if the father of the family was fit to travel. To which the family doctor would have replied that a vacation would be beneficial for him.

According to his wife, the back pain was “manageable” until the last day. As they flew back to Montreal, Ms Chavez said the pains got so bad on their first flight that her husband was unable to walk or eat.

Urgently hospitalized during their transfer to Mexico City, Mr. Bigras had the unpleasant surprise of discovering that he had a 40 centimeter tumor in his back.

Subsequently, a biopsy of the tumor confirmed that the lymphoma had returned and Mr. Bigras could not leave the hospital.

As the hospital stay was extended, Ms. Chavez stayed with her husband and sent their children home so they could go to school. They currently live with his sister in Laval.

Meanwhile, the financial costs for the family increase. Their insurance was able to cover a large portion of the medical expenses, approximately $40,000. They have started a fundraiser to pay the $12,000 they owe out of pocket, an amount that keeps growing.

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