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Old 08-03-2012, 09:14 PM   #1
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What to expect! Advice please.

My good friend who is only 45 years old was just diagnosed 7/28/2012 with pancreatic cancer with metastatic to the liver. He had large pc tumor on the tail that protruded into his colon also.

The 2 options they gave 2 days ago was chemo or a palliative surgery. So he is in surgery as I write this having the tail of his pancreas resected, part of the colon and spleen removed.

We want to get him to feel good for a bit before he goes....which I know will be soon. We are aiming to make Christmas.

I will update this after the surgery results....and along the way of this process. Any advice or experiences or words of hope would be great. Thank you. Dan

 
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Old 08-04-2012, 07:05 AM   #2
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Re: What to expect! Advice please.

How did the surgery go? So frustrating that this disease is diagnosed so late. I understand if the cancer is just in the tail it can be removed but if it spreads to the liver, not good.
My best friend lived a year after her diagnosis, of stage 4, so it is possible your friend could make it to Christmas a great gift if he is comfy. My friend drank Ensure when her desire to eat became less and less. We spent a lot of time together and discussed her wishes. I was able to thank her for being such a great friend and nothing was left unsaid. THat was so important.

 
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Old 08-04-2012, 07:21 AM   #3
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Re: What to expect! Advice please.

Your friend is lucky to have you out there seeking help for him. There is no reason he couldn't have chemo after surgery if he chooses to. It is a tough choice, but may get him some extra time. You may want to offer to participate with him in fulfilling his "bucket list" items. After he heals from surgery he may feel well enough to do some of the nthings he always wanted to do, and doing those with him will make his remaining time more fun and meaningful for both of you. If you can watch "The Last Lecture" video by Randy Pausch, PhD, it is a wonderful account of a professor who gave his last lecture at Carnegie Mellon to 400 people, while he was dying from pancreatic cancer. It is inspiring.

 
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Old 08-04-2012, 09:50 AM   #4
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Re: What to expect! Advice please.

Surgery update....they removed tail of pancreas, 10 inches of colon, spleen, and a small part of his stomach. Apparently everything was fused together by the tumor. He also had a perforation in his colon caused by an abscess, so had he not done surgery he would of died from that in weeks. So we made the right choice. Whew. Was second guessing things last night. The doctor said he could see lots of tiny tumors throughout abdominal cavity as well as 3 on his liver, ranging in size from a half dollar to a penny. So chemo is a must. The big hump at the moment is getting his colon to heal and bowels to crank up. 4 to 5 days we will know. We are looking for best chemo options and have 2 weeks to get a plan before he is ready to start.

Currently pain management is tough....he is loaded up but still has intense pain breakthroughs...we have ordered an epidural now....so he should get that soon. He didn't want one last night. But now it's a different story.

I thank you for your replies. It is nice to hear your input and ideas. I am writing them all down. I will watch the last lecture for sure....and will laugh with him if we get to the ensure.

 
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Old 08-04-2012, 07:44 PM   #5
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Re: What to expect! Advice please.

Update...epidural in place today and pain seems to be in controlled now. He has been moved out of ICU.

 
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Old 08-06-2012, 01:10 PM   #6
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Re: What to expect! Advice please.

good news. Just getting rid of the abscess will make him feel better once he gets over the surgery hump. Thanks for the update.

 
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Old 08-06-2012, 02:15 PM   #7
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Re: What to expect! Advice please.

Glad he is more comfortable now-epidurals are great. One suggestion if I may: You might want to watch the last lecture on your own first, without your friend, and then decide if your friend might benefit from seeing it. Randy Pausch was extraordinarily strong, and not everyone could do what he did. Wouldn't want to impose any unrealistic expectations or guilt on your friend if he feels he can't measure up. But you will know after watching it what is right to do. Comfort and healing to you both.

 
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Old 10-23-2012, 04:52 AM   #8
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Re: What to expect! Advice please.

I'm so very sorry to hear about your friend. So sad at such a young age. When cancer strikes, I believe that nutrition is crucial. I remember years ago reading an article about a book written for cancer patients outling foods to eat and foods to avoid. I'm certain there are lots of books like this available considering how many cancer patients battling this disease. Another thought is consulting with a Nutritionist. A Holistic/All Natural Approach could extend your friends life. I do remember in this article a statement, "Sugar Feeds Cancer".

 
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