Join CaringBridge during this most important time of the year. Your support means that we can continue to provide free, secure websites all year long.
11/28/2016 Latest post:
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.
About three weeks ago Randy started noticing pain and numbness in his left finger and thumb. He went into the emergency room in Breckenridge and they said he had a clot and no radial pulse in his left hand. He was sent from there to Sanford where he spent about 3 days hospitalized on pain meds and blood thinners. Ultrasound showed a clot in his radial artery from his elbow all the way down to his finger tip. He was sent home on pain meds and blood thinners that were supposed to help clear the blood clot and increase blood flow to the hand. He was to follow up with his primary doctor at the VA. The pain had not decreased in the following 2 weeks and the finger and thumb kept getting increasingly blacker. Sunday night the 20th the pain was so bad he threw up blood. He refused to go to ER saying he would go in the morning but later that evening he passed out and had bloody stools as well. He was brought to the VA emergency room where he was found to have a GI bleed with low hemaglobin levels. He was taken from there to Sanford by ambulance. They reversed the effects of the blood thinners, gave him a unit of blood, and did a upper and lower endoscopy to try to find the bleed. They were not able to find the source of the bleed that way so did a CT scan and found a tumor on his pancreas as well as what looked like multiple metastatic lesions in his liver and possibly his spleen. A blood sample for pancreatic cancer markers was taken and was 12,000. Tuesday morning Cindy was told it looked like he had pancreatic cancer, but they would not say for sure until biopsy results were back. Since Randy had continued to be on blood thinners and getting blood the biopsy could not be done until Wednesday. The results came back Saturday that it was indeed stage 4 pancreatic cancer with mets to other organs. This diagnosis does not have a cure or very promising prognosis. At this time the doctors have said without any treatment to slow the cancer growth his outlook would be about 3 to 6 months. Chemotherapy treatment is unable to cure this cancer, but may be able to slow the progression of the disease. Depending on how he responds to the chemotherapy he may have more time and we will take each day as it comes. He started his first run of chemotherapy at Sanford today, Sunday November 27th. Family has spent a lot of time at the hospital with him. He has good moments and hard moments between pain and disbelief. At times he does not want visitors and other times he is in better spirits and would like to see friends and family. It is hard to keep everyone informed, but we will try to keep up on this site so everyone can know how things are going. At this time they are trying to control pain, monitor for bleeding, and starting the chemotherapy treatments with as minimal side effects as possible. Feel free to update, share information, or thoughts in the journal portion of this site. Thank you to everyone who loves and cares about Randy and his family.