Pancreatic cancer

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Pancreatic cancer

Hi, I am 42 and my Mum has just been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, mum will be going in for surgery next Friday. Mum is 77 years old and only weighs 38 kg, doctors have asked if she has lost weight which the answer is always no. Mum has always been this weight and I can't understand how she could possibly lose any weight as she no fat on her at all. I don't know if this is a good thing or not. We have been told this is major surgery and she will be in intensive care after the surgery. We have also been told that once they start surgery there is a chance they will not go through with it if the surgeon feels it will not be of any benefit for her & if she was to try chemo or radiation it will not get rid of the cancer but only slow it down. I was wondering if any one has been through or knows of someone in this type of situation who may be able to share their experience and to help one very scared family help our much loved and little mum through this. I have been reading all of your stories and send big hugs and best wishes to all. Susan
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Re: Pancreatic cancer

Susan So very sorry to read of your Mums Plight,if the surgery your Mum is having is a Whipple, I had the same over 3 years ago,the surgeon possibly means when they open your Mum up if the Cancer has grown all over the portal vein they will close your Mum up,and then chemo and radiation, that should happen in the first hour or a bit longer If the surgery goes much longer and by that I mean many hours they will keep operating, it depends where the Tumor is the head of the pancreas or the tail of the pancreas as to what organs are removed it is a hard Surgery, but they would not operate if they thought there was no chance of survival for your Mum, so I wish her all the best for her upcoming surgery I was in my sixties when I had mine so good luck thoughts are with her. kj
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Re: Pancreatic cancer

Hi KJ, I have been reading Melz storie, it sounds like she has the same as my Mum, the tumour is in the head of the pancreas and it is the Whipple surgery she is having. We have been told it can take up to six hours, but they don't know how bad it is until they open her up. How long did it take you to recover after the surgery? I understand each case is different and recovery times will depend on each persons age and health etc. did you have to go into rehab when you left the hospital? I am asking as we have been told it may be needed. Thank you for your last response you have given me some much needed comfort and hope of a positive outcome. I am very grateful to you.
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Re: Pancreatic cancer

Hi Susan My tumor was in the head of the pancreas also,my Surgery started at 8AM and I was in the ward at 900 pm after recovery I was in hospital about three weeks,but as you say we all have different recovery times,they want you up and out of bed as soon as possible and walking a few steps that is very important for recovery, Mum may not feel like it but you can help there,her pain will be taken care of by the medications I remember floating in and out after surgery for days, if she has pain ask and they will adjust the dose,she will not eat for days that comes after,before starting solids ask for a stool softener, I did not know about that,and on reflection it is a must,to stop straining.I did not need rehabilitation, some people need intensive care some do not,also do not be alarmed by all of the tubes,we all had them if your Mum is in intensive care she will be well looked after. My recovery from the surgery took months when I came home, eating food takes awhile as your tummy has changed and food volumes and taste are not the same it takes a while to adjust, so just be patient for Mum and lots of support and encouragement which I can tell you will provide, I know I needed time to adjust to the new me and needed TLC from my family you are physically tired and emotionally fragile after a Whipple. Hope this helps explains parts of a Whipple and the after effects. Will be thinking of your Mum Friday Good Wellness kj
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Re: Pancreatic cancer

Hi KJ, thank you so much for sharing your experience with me, I am so very grateful. At least I now have an idea of what to expect after the surgery. My mum may be little but she is tough, as a family we will get her through this Battle. Take care and wishing you good health kj.
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Re: Pancreatic cancer

Hi KJ, I am a 64 year old male who over the 12 months since diagnosis has responded well to chemo for pancreatic cancer but so far surgeons won’t operate because there has been evidence of metastases into omentum and peritoneum. I’ve been off chemo since November 15 2013 and so far my ca19.9 has stayed stable. One surgeon has said if it stays stable for 6 months he would operate with whipple and removal of omentum. I am hoping for this but realistically it may not stay stable in next month or so and I will be back on chemo. At what stage of proceedings did you have your whipple? In what State of Australia did you have it? How has quality of life been? Ian
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Re: Pancreatic cancer

Ian My Whipple was done at an early stage in Victoria.My quality of life has been not to bad, up and down but without the Whipple I probably would not be writing this reply, after a a Whipple there is a new you, it takes a while to get over the surgery and used to things but if you do get to have the surgery you may breeze through it, we are all different. Quality of life is ok better than the alternative. kj
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