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Moving Through a Marathon as an Inspiration to Others

October 07, 2022

As the chief of emergency medicine at The Hospital of Central Connecticut (HOCC), David Buono, MD, is used to taking care of people coming through the Emergency Department. Over the past year though, he’s had to unexpectedly take care of his own health.

Last October, the 60-year-old was diagnosed with prostate cancer after getting a PSA test during a physical – a routine blood test that screens for prostate cancer. “I skipped the PSA test the last few years because I thought everything was fine,” says Buono. In February, he underwent robotic surgery at HOCC to remove his prostate and ultimately the cancer. Buono, who admits he doesn’t like to sit still, found it challenging to get back to one if his passions – running.

I was slower and sore after surgery. I had to build up my endurance to run again and really learn to pace myself,” Buono explains.

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Before his surgery, he signed up for the Hartford Marathon, an event he’s been taking part in for the last 20 years. He was committed to joining the race and wasn’t going to let his cancer diagnosis stop him. “I wanted the race to be my focus, not the cancer,” he says. Over the last seven months, he’s been getting back in shape – preparing for the big day.

As if that wasn’t enough, Buono found out he was chosen to join the Hartford Marathon Foundation’s 2022 Inspiration Team. Amid the thousands of runners taking part in the marathon, Buono was one of only a handful of people chosen to be part of the team, which highlights specific runners for their strength and resilience in the face of adversity.

He’s using this opportunity to remind others about the importance of routine health screenings – especially when it comes to cancer. “I want people to understand that these types of screenings are so important. I had no symptoms prior to my cancer diagnosis so if it wasn’t for the blood test, I would’ve never known,” says Buono. “I am on a mission to get the word out about screenings for various types of cancers. We have them for a reason and they save lives.”

Buono will be running the marathon on Oct. 8 despite his health setbacks earlier in the year. Continuing what’s become a yearly tradition – with no signs of stopping anytime soon. “My goal is to be the oldest person running this race one day,” says Buono.

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Interested in connecting with a prostate cancer specialist?

Prostate cancer is called the “silent killer” because it generally has few noticeable symptoms until it’s advanced. It’s important for men to have regular check-ups that include blood tests and rectal exams that can uncover problems with the prostate.

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