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9/2/2014 Latest post:
Diagnosed with stage IV metastatic colon cancer in August 2014. Trying out this site as a way for friends and family to keep up with where I am at with treatment etc.
A lot of people have asked me what the signs were. Fatigue was the main one. Last year I thought I was feeling a little off, but still did my usual bike riding, though seemed to have more difficulty. I had a pretty sedentary winter, where I mostly just swam. In the spring, I started running again, and was really slow, but I hadn't run in quite some time, so attributed it to that. After about two or three months things really hadn't improved. I mentioned it at my physical, so my doctor went ahead and checked my iron, ferritin etc. The normal low end for ferritin is 30, I was at 5; low end of iron is 45, and I was at 14. Severely anemic. That meant I was losing blood, so off to get an upper and lower GI endoscopy. That is when they found a tumor at my ileocecal valve. Next came a CT, which showed a metastatic lymph node, 10 lesions in my lungs, and possible involvement with my liver, spine and pelvis. PET scan showed no bone, and lymph node metastasis; did show 12 lung lesions, one in the liver, and the primary colon tumor. On 9/17/14, I had a right hemi-colectomy. The surgeon said he thought a number of the nodes around the tumor site felt metastatic. Pathology should take about a week. During the surgery they gave me a bupivacaine block, which numbs your abdomen for several days, allowing them to avoid opiates that slow recovery. Because of this I was able to go home two days later. I also gave myself acupuncture while there, and think it really helped me to avoid ileus, and move things along, too.
~Sean Passed away peacefully in hospice on September 21st, 2015