Dec 03, 2009 - 12:57 am
I have a lifelong friend, who had surgery (I think it was the Ivor Lewis procedure) by an outstanding surgeon at a teaching hospital (UAB) in Birmingham, Alabama. The surgery was 2 years ago next week, and everything was and is going well. Minimal problems with reflux; no signs of cancer recurrence. Doctors all say that it was discovered as quickly as it ever can be and had not spread. The surgical procedure involved an incision from the front and from the back. As I understand it, the back entrance involved separating two ribs. About five months after the surgery, she began experiencing intense pain that radiated from her sternum all the way around to her back. She describes it as an intense burning pain that wakes her up and keeps her up . . . but she may have a good night/day or two or three. She has had Lyrica for the pain and recently had an epidural, but there was no significant change. At the onset, she had the sensation that something was leaking, but returned to B'ham and extensive tests, with no indication of that problem.
Here is a strange thing that alleviates the pain: first it was cold liquid that helped somewhat at the onset; then, somehow, she started eating fudgesicles. That seems to be the only thing that helps. Has anyone had the problem with this burning pain? She has been going to a pain clinic, and that physician is suggesting sending her back to someone at UAB for a more definitive diagnosis and recommended treatment.
I love my friend very much, and would appreciate any similar experiences that anyone is willing to share. Thanks!!!
Janet in Alabama