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Oct 21, 2016 Latest post:
Nov 1, 2017
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.
Beginning in mid summer, I had some mild to intermediate discomfort in my abdomen area. Being young (relatively) and healthy, I of course ignored it for a couple of months until the discomfort turned into some pain, and it began to affect my diet. My first trip to a doctors office was on Saturday September 17, 2016. It was a Saturday and I went to the urgent care at my regular clinic. I think I was particularly uncomfortable that day and on a trip to the bank, dry cleaners, and a haircut, I decided to drop in and get checked out. I was there for around 3 hours and after blood and urine tests, a quick check of the prostate, and an X-ray, we determined that I was constipated and had a gut full of poop. I was told to work on that with over the counter remedies and if that didn't work, to come back in a couple of weeks. Well, it didn't work. I contacted my primary care doctor after those two weeks, and set up a CT scan for Friday October 7, 2016. The scan was scheduled at 3:30 in the afternoon, I got home around 5:00 and took a nap. I was quite surprised when my doctor called me at home at 9:00 pm (never a good sign) to discuss the results. In the CT scan, they found a 2.5 cm mass on my pancreas and that's when this journey began.
With the help of several people, I got connected to the U of M cancer center. I had an endoscopic ultrasound on Wednesday 10/12/16 for a look inside and a biopsy. Preliminary results of that pathology work came back on Friday 10/14/16 (that one week since the CT scan seemed like a year) which confirmed that the cancer had moved out of my pancreas and into my small intestine and abdomen wall. Because it has moved out of my pancreas, I am at a stage 4, and surgery is not an option. Not good, but at least we know what we are dealing with now. I met with my oncologist and his team for the first time on Monday 10/17/16 learned more about my specific situation and treatment options, and made the decision to start chemotherapy ASAP, and got the first round scheduled for Tuesday 10/25/16. I have a procedure on Friday 10/21/16 to get a port installed in my chest where the drugs will be administered, and blood can be drawn more efficiently.
I have lost 25-30 pounds over the past several months (like I had that much weight to lose) and haven't been sleeping regularly. My digestive system hasn't been working well, and my appetite hasn't been normal. In this week before chemo starts I am focused on stopping/reversing the weight loss and getting on a regular sleep pattern and I have some pharmaceutical help in making sure that happens. So far so good - I have actually gained a pound back so far this week, and slept for over 8 hours last night.
That's what we know for right now, more info to follow when we have it