In spring of 2012, I was stricken with oral cancer brought on by 40-plus years of smoking approximately three packs per day. My wife and I had no insurance and it was a long, hard-fought battle to obtain the medical attention I needed to remove the golf-ball size tumor in my tongue.

In spring of 2012, I was stricken with oral cancer brought on by 40-plus years of smoking approximately three packs per day. My wife and I had no insurance and it was a long, hard-fought battle to obtain the medical attention I needed to remove the golf-ball size tumor in my tongue.


We did find help through Texas Oncology and Baylor Medical Center of Dallas. I spent three days in the intensive care unit and another nine days recovering at the hospital. They removed roughly two-thirds of my tongue, approximately one-half of my lower jaw and I still feed myself through a PEG tube but I am making remarkable progress.


After my surgery we both quit smoking and began using electronic cigarettes to help with our need/desire for nicotine. We can now breathe easier, our house and clothes no longer smell like a wet ashtray and we have more energy.


I could have easily continued to smoke tobacco cigarettes but there was an alternative and that alternative was electronic cigarettes. Over the past 40 years I had tried to stop on several occasions, trying the patches, gum and a product called Wellbutrin (an anti-depression pill commonly used to help smokers quit) all to no avail. My wife and I are still both smoke-free for over a year and a half now.


Alton "Sparky" Cox


Sherman