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506791 tn?1439846583

There is Hope.

May 14th made 1 year since I received the pancreatic cancer diagnosis.  The tumor was Stage 1B (T2 NØ MØ) and I decided to have surgery as soon as possible.  The tumor was well defined enough and had no involvement, so I needed no chemo or radiation before surgery.

On June 2nd last year, from initial cut to final staple, I underwent a pylorus preserving Whipple procedure. In the pathology report the tumor was Stage 2B (T3 NX MØ) with 4 of 29 lymph nodes and 1 nerve suspected a involved, no other spread.

From July 14th to December 22nd I underwent chemo therapy (2 weeks on - 1 week labs) with Zophran for nausea and Gemzar for anti-cancer effects.

Staples came out at 3 weeks, chemo started at 6 weeks and I was back to work part time at 9 weeks.

I am fortunate and can eat much the same as I did beforehand.  I lost over 40 pounds and have regained 10.

Main lingering effects are tiredness, aches and mil constipation.

My results are not typical, but ARE possible.
7 Responses
Avatar universal
Thank you Pip, you're a wonderful success story!  
506791 tn?1439846583
Hey all, little update...still doing real well, save I have developed an incisional hernia.  Not bothering me right now though it looks like I have a walnut behind my belly button and a pack of playing cards under the skin to the right.

Follow up with oncologist and surgeon at the end of March, labwork and CT scan shows no recurrence thus far.

Hernia will be fixed when a continuing low platelet count is solved.
506791 tn?1439846583
Saw my oncologist for the usual 3 month followup, CT and labs were done the week before so she'd have the results.

Dr Shah is very pleased with what she did not see in both the scan and the labs...things are looking good.

My liver is almost back to pre-jaundice condition. 3 of 4 numbers in the normal range, last one is just a little above normal. A1C (diabetes indicator) is in the normal range. Kidneys, heart, lungs thyroid look good. Blood looks good, save the platelets being low, but improving.  CA19-9 was down to 5.

Said my spleen is very slightly enlarged, which may be related to the low platelet count.  We will continue to monitor.

BUT, overall, next appointment is in 4 months, instead of 3.

There is hope!  I was diagnosed on 10 May 2015 (told about it on 14 May when they got a surgeon to speak with me), had the pylorus preserving Whipple on 2 June, chemo July - December.

Still waiting on a hernia repair, though I did get my pacemaker replaced yesterday, no complications.
Avatar universal
Wonderful news Pip! So glad to hear that you are doing well!!
506791 tn?1439846583
Saw the oncologist for the 1st time in 6 months.

All blood count and chemistry numbers are in normal range (except the platelets, they are still low, but back up to 2/3 normal).

Also, there was no evidence of recurrence or metastasis in the CT scan results.  All organs appear to be as normal as expected after the major surgery i had.

There is some evidence of hardening of the arteries in and around my heart, which is not unexpected, runs in the family.  There was also some damage to my spine consistent with osteoarthritis, also not unexpected.

All in all, I am a very fortunate man.  It looks like I will have the years needed to care for Anita and the kitties.

For me, feeling something was off (jaundice, light stools, dark urine, fevers, aches...), getting to the doctor...led to early detection and treatment.
I am now 2 years out from the 1st chemo treatment, 22 December will be 2 years from the end of chemo.
506791 tn?1439846583
A few days after my May update, I was in the hospital for and ERCP and placement of stents in the bile ducts.  I developed stones without having a gall bladder and the ducts were blocked causing jaundice.

Five weeks later the stents were removed.

Things seem to be going okay now.  Just had a bit of vertigo last Friday, enough that I called off work for the first time sine the stones.
506791 tn?1439846583
28 months and a week post-Whipple...no recurrence thus far.
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