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Just Diagnosed (UPDATE)

jcurt
Posts: 3
Joined: Nov 2007

Well, Chemo and Radiation was completed on Dec. 21 and my mother had a 6 week break. On Jan 29 she had the almost 6 hour surgery to reconstruct her esophagus. Almost all of her esophagus was removed and a small part of her stomach (DX: EC of the GE Junction). She was just discharged but since the surgery, she has experienced coughing. She didn't sleep well the first night at home due to not being able to breath well. She felt better sitting up than lying down. Lying down causes difficulty breathing after a while sleeping. Anyone had this procedure or know someone who has? Does these symptoms sound familiar and do they go away? Thanks for any information you can provide.

jcurt
Posts: 3
Joined: Nov 2007

William66, Thank you so much for sharing your story, it has answered so many of my questions. I will print this out and let my mother read this. It will be such an inspiration for her, to have someone who has gone through what she is experiencing doing so well five years later. God is good and he hears our prayers. I am so happy to hear that you are in good health and that you and your wife have grown even closer throughout this ordeal. This is something I wish my mother had but unfortunately her and my father divorced two years ago (after 45 years of marriage). Those unresolved feelings along with this diagnosis was a bit much for her. God placed some great doctors in her life that encouraged her and luckily she was able to focus on herself getting better. I have prayed for that and I also pray for my father eventhough he hasn't once called and asked how my mother was doing during this entire process.

Dr. Bostick, my mother's Surgical Oncologist, has explained to her about how the stomach is much larger than her Esophagus and that this can increase the amount of reflux. She fortunately didn't have to have a feeding tube after being in the hospital for two weeks. The swallow test results were normal so she begin on only liquids. Then slowly progressed to grits and cream of wheat without a problem. The only thing I am concerned with is getting those 1500 calories in daily because she gets full to quickly. That I will ask him about before she is discharged. She is not coughing as much now that they have increased Benzonatate doses. They did find some fluid in her lungs so a Pulmonologist was consulted to use a camera to view her throat and give information on her chest x-rays. Also and Internal Medicine doctor was consulted to monitor her blood pressure, because that was elevated due to all the coughing. Hopefully, they can come up with a plan that will help her get some rest, because she was not sleeping.

My nephew did see the wedge pillows and Linen 'n Things so we will be purchasing them for her. We just want her to be comfortable so that she can recovery. She is ready to go home, but I can't see when that will be because she lives alone. Again, I really appreciate you sharing, and know that you are truly a blessing to me. May you, your wife and family continue to be blessed. Be encouraged!

judyloo's picture
judyloo
Posts: 39
Joined: Jun 2008

Hey jcurt - as William said get some risers and put the head of the bed up about 4-6 inches - it helped my husbands "new reflux" greatly! Pillows will not do the job. This and the meds for reflux the MD put him on really have helped - there are a number of meds out there so seek council from your MD ASAP. Yes things do get better and I'm sure your Mom is experiencing relief by now - June. Its been 6 months from diagnosis, rt/chemo/surgery and now recovery for my husband and humor , prayer and support from family & friends has helped us get through alot. Even the dreaded nightime reflux! Good luck.

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