Jessica Irick

First post: Mar 31, 2021 Latest post: Sep 25, 2023
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. On Wednesday March 10, I went in for a colonoscopy after feeling significant pressure on my tailbone for about 2 months. The GI doctor came out after saying that they had never seen anything “like this” before and did multiple biopsies. She sent it to the pathologist STAT and hoped for results no later than Friday. On Thursday afternoon I received a call from the GI doctor and she told me that it was cancer. I had squamous cells in my anus. She said that it was anal cancer and she referred me to an oncologist, Dr. Kalmadi. His office called first thing Friday morning and set me up with an appt at 3:00 that afternoon. When we went in to meet him I informed him that I had what I thought was a hernia. He immediately responded that it wasn’t a hernia, it’s lymph nodes that the cancer had spread to. He explained that the cancer forms in the anus (5cm in), then it spreads to lymph nodes around the anus, and then it spreads to the lymph nodes in the groin. Currently, it’s affecting my right groin. Because of this spread, it is considered Stage 3 Anal Carcinoma. The next place it spreads to is the liver or lungs which we will determine through a CT scan.  The treatment for Stage 3 Anal Carcinoma is 5-6 weeks of radiation combined with chemotherapy. I will receive the chemotherapy on weeks 2 and 5. 
We are extremely hopeful that this will be successful. This is doable and I’m feeling very confident that my body can do this! I always appreciate your words of encouragement and support. Feel free to send me a text if you have more questions or even if you are just thinking of me. I definitely love to talk and it does help my mental state. This is going to be the best way to let people know updates quickly and easily. Thanks to everyone already ❤️ 

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