Apr 23, 2004 - 9:42 am
I have been posting on this board for the last couple of weeks. I want to share my cancer story, especially for the newly diagnosed. I was diagnosed with stage 3 rectal cancer on March 17, 2003. 2 out of 12 nodes were positive. Since then I have had 5 weeks of radiation treatments along with continuous 5FU. I was able to work full time during my treatments, except for 2 days that I took off from exhaustion. Two days after my last treatment, I went to my daughter's college graduation in another state. Two weeks later, my son graduated from high school. I have another son still in high school. On June 26, 2003, I had an ultra low anterior resection with a temporary ileostomy. I was hospitalized twice after this surgery with small bowel obstructions, that were treated with bowel rest and IV fluids. On August 18, 2003, I had an ileostomy reversal along with 2 sections of my small bowel removed that were damaged from radiation. About six weeks after that I had 4 chemo treatments of 5FU and leukovorin. I was supposed to get 12 treatments, but had to stop because I had diarrhea so bad I spent a week in the hospital and was on TPN (IV fluids) which I continued at home for 3 weeks. Since then I have had multiple problems with the whole bowel thing. My tumor was very low and my problems are a result of my low anastomosis. It is much better than it was. I went back to work part time in October and full time in January. So far my cat scans are negative, and my last CEA was 0.8. YIPPEE. I had the year from HELL, but am now doing better. I am telling you all this, because I didn't think that I would ever get better. I have, and for those of you just starting on this terrible journey, YOU WILL GET BETTER TOO.