CSN Login
Members Online: 5

Getting Spleen Taking Out

Vickilg's picture
Vickilg
Posts: 281
Joined: Jan 2011

I went for a second opinion and this doctor is working with my current ONC now.  They are going to take out my spleen by cutting off the blood supply and letting it die.  It should be an overnight procedure - same day if the pain isn't bad.  Has anyone had this?

 

This is good news if it brings my platelets back up so I can get regular dosages of chemo.  The platelets have really interferred with that.  I asked the doctor if there was a chance of remission if I get on regular chemo and he said no.  I don't get it.  I know I have a lot of cancer in my body but I thought that getting regular chemo would help with that.

 

 

hippiechicks's picture
hippiechicks
Posts: 314
Joined: Sep 2012

That is great news!! Glad you were able to get that opinion!

Do both the doctors say no chance for remission? Maybe you could speak to another oncologist about that. I have found that just about all of them have different opinions. Perhaps finding one that is on the same page as you would make a difference on how chemo would proceed.

Wishing you the best of luck!!

 

Sundanceh's picture
Sundanceh
Posts: 4283
Joined: Jun 2009

Hey Vicki

You and JGB will be getting the same procedure.  The medical articles I read stated that platelet level would rise...I was in line for this procedure to be done...but Oxy was about to end, so I elected not to do the procedure.

Article also states that when one's spleen is removed, that one is more susceptible to regular illnesses....but, the chances of any of that would be secondary to the firefight you are in right now.

What I did not have the chance to find out was....will your platelet level still rise and fall?  How quick and how much recovery does it take?  Do the levels stay static?  Or is there an up and rise associated with this?

Oxy cuts the platelets down bad...literally tore mine 1/3 each treatment...like 100 down to 70....like 70 down to 52.

So, what is going to be fascinating is how the platelets rebuild.

As for what your onc said, perhaps, he is referring to long term remission...I can't see how if you get this procedure and tolerate more chemo treatments, especially Folfiri, that you will not have some kind of positive response.

You should experience shrinkage...and/or no new growth. 

We just have to stop it right here for now....and not get too far ahead of ourselves. 

Let's show the onc what your body will do...now, is the time you have to dig a little bit deeper, as hard as that is right now.

The rubber is about to meet the road....and I think these next events will definitely chart your cancer journey and tell you where you are going. 

Play out this hand completely...don't fold yet!

Hugs/Craig

 

Momof2plusteentwins's picture
Momof2plusteentwins
Posts: 446
Joined: May 2012

I don't understand how he can say no. How does he know how your body will respond to chemo. I have seen people here have chemo take care of liver, lung, and peritoneum cancer and go into remission. I believe there is always hope. Good luck with surgery.
Sandy :)

johnnybegood's picture
johnnybegood
Posts: 1122
Joined: Oct 2008

my surgen called today and i go in for pre op tomarrow and will have a spleenectomy next thursday feb.7.i opted not to have them go in my groin and shoot the radiation to my spleen and let it die out as my docs told me there is alot of pain with that procedure.just put me to sleep and take the darn thing out.the highest my platelets will go is 72 and thats on a good day.they mostly been staying around 65 to 68.i have exhausted all other options and i am struggling emotionally with this.mainly due to the reality of what started out as 3 spots in one lung and 2 in the other.my chemo onc just would never tell me how many spots i actually have he would just say according to the ct report you have multiple.my surgen is the only one who tells me straight up like it is and since i have not been on avastin since june 2012 and just been on xeloda only i now have a total of 38 lung nodules so i will never be able to have any kind of surgery on my lungs   WHAM what a blow that was i sure didnt see that one coming.so Vicki we got to get in fight mode if we are going to get thru this spleen thing.i am with you if you are with me.one thing i do want to ask you did your docs tell you that the procedure you are going to have is not 100 percent effective because thats what my docs told me that is another reason why i just want them to take mine out i did not want to go thru all that pain for nothing.good luck and let me know how you are doing....Godbless....johnnybegood

Vickilg's picture
Vickilg
Posts: 281
Joined: Jan 2011

Hi there... I will ask those questions when I meet with the doctor.  For me they said it was less invasive and some people have pain and others do not.  That the most it would be is an overnight stay in the hospital if there was pain.  I will ask them about the effectiveness.  I have had a lot of surgery so maybe that is why they are going this route.  I'm not looking forward to the pain but I have been through a lot of procedures and usually handle the pain well.  I will keep you posted.  I'm right by your side Johnny.  We will get through this.  I have multiple mets to the lungs as well.  Jennie did too and her's were clear after 6 months of agressive chemo so there is hope.  I'll be thinking of you!

johnnybegood's picture
johnnybegood
Posts: 1122
Joined: Oct 2008

just checking in on you before i make the 180 mile round trip to my 2nd home which is louisville,ky where all my doctors and hospital is where i have my surgeries.i am having my surgery laproscopically that is how my liver resection and rfa on my liver was done.he expects me to be in hospital 4 to 5 days trying not to push me too hard to go home because i too have been thru so much already.my surgen is a Godsend.i wish we could be together to have this done but i will be checking on you to make sure you are ok.pm me if you want(HUGS)...Godbless....johnnybegood

hippiechicks's picture
hippiechicks
Posts: 314
Joined: Sep 2012

Wishing you the best of luck with your procedure.  Lots of positive energy coming your way.

John23
Posts: 1832
Joined: Jan 2007

 

 

Your new doctor has provided another opinion, and that’s great! But please keep in mind, that all it is, is another opinion.

 

Ren has the right idea, with getting as many opinions as you can get. Each physician you see and question, can only give you their opinion and not much more than that. You didn’t say what type of physician your new one is, but getting opinions from experienced surgeons usually fares better than from those caught up with pharmaceuticals.

 

Not all surgeons will suggest removing organs that are not damaged or riddled with cancer, and once that organ is gone, it’s gone. The spleen is important to the immune system, something we need to survive against the odds we’ve been facing. I am always wary of the removal of an organ, any organ, if there is not an absolute need to remove the perfectly good organ. I am always puzzled why physicians want to try to fool mother nature, or “fix” a situation by removing something that may or may not matter with the malady they are trying to “fix”.

 

It’s your ultimate choice to make, so take time to think about it, and get more opinions from those qualified to provide those opinions.

 

My problems aren’t due to my 7 year past cancer, my health problems are due to all the intestine (gall bladder, etc) that had been removed……. Sometimes we can suffer consequences of “treatments” and poor opinions for a very long time afterward (like forever)…

 

If you can do so, get other opinions before they remove anything.

 

Best hopes for better health!!

 

John

 

tachilders's picture
tachilders
Posts: 315
Joined: Jun 2012

Your doctor was giving his medical opinion, and quite frankly there is no way he can know for sure if you can get into remission.  It may be highly unlikely based on his experience dealing with cases LIKE yours, but no case is exactly alike.  I have become convinced that standard chemo will NOT get me to NED/remission, but may keep me stable for awhile (maybe 1-2 years total), which is why I am now exploring different approaches like dendritic cell vaccines.  These may not work for me, but I believe they have the best potential in my case, since surgery doesn't appear to be a good option.  The best part about a vaccine is that it is systemic, i.e. it can get to every part of the body where the cancer is, and it stimulates your own body to destroy the cancer cells.  Also, your immune system has a memory, so even if the cancer treis to pop up again, the immune system will respond and wipe it out.  Cancer vaccines are the way of the future, IF they can figure out a better way to get them to recognize and destroy the cancer cells, and also if they can find a cancer antigen to use as a target for cancers in different people.  Currently, those are the biggest hurdles to cancer vaccines, and the best thing they can do now is try to get the vaccines they have to work in your particular case.

Tedd 

steveandnat's picture
steveandnat
Posts: 887
Joined: Sep 2011

It will be great when you can get your platelets high enough to get treatment. This crazy cancer ride it is nice not having treatmentnut in the back of our minds we know those little bugger tumors are up to no good and we need the darn chemo. Pray everything goes great for you.  Jeff

Varmint5's picture
Varmint5
Posts: 371
Joined: Feb 2012

And I hope that things go well for both of you and your procedures improve your platelet counts so you can get chemo and knock this thing back down. You are both fighters and strong women. Vicki, no doctor can tell you with 100% certainty that remission will not happen. Hopefully, you will prove him wrong once you get that chemo going again. Best wishes to both of you.

Sandy 

renw's picture
renw
Posts: 282
Joined: Jan 2013

have spoken to 8 oncologists now. The first question I ask is whether they cured anyone with stage 4 mcrc, and the second question i ask whether they know of anyone that was cured. The answer has always been NO and NO. The consensus is that advanced stage 4 is not curable at least not with chemo. Statistcally, the 5 year survival is 4-6%, but that does not mean cure. If chemo is sucessful in reducing mets enough so that u are eligible for a colon or liver resection your odds improve. This is not likely in my case hence why I started down the road less traveled. I am pursuing various immunotherapies, devascularization and potential metabolic treatments using the thyroid. I believe chemo can prolong life, has done for me, but I also believe that it is a dead end. Cancer will mutate and learn t repair dns damage caused by chemo, you then go on second line. eventually second line also fails. Spontaneous remissions do happen and the chance is 1 in about 60000. Usually they happen after another infection which triggers the immune system. This is why I believe the immune system is the key to a stage 4 cure.

Ren

tachilders's picture
tachilders
Posts: 315
Joined: Jun 2012

5 year survival rate for stage 4 colon cancer is higher than reported, as the data used for these stats is commonly 10 years old, and includes any death within 5 years even if it wasn't cancer related.  With that said, the 5 year survival rate is still probably only 10-20%, so it isn't very good yet.  However, they are making advances all the time, so we just have to hang on as long as possible and hope for a breakthrough, especially those of us who are not good candidates for surgery and are relying mainly on chemo for control of our cancer.

 

Tedd

renw's picture
renw
Posts: 282
Joined: Jan 2013

In regards to red blood cells, I tried nettle tea. It seems to have worked for me and my platellets have been in the normal range since I started drinking 3 cups per day despite chemo. before they have always been low.

For white blood cells I find betaglucans work well.

 http://www.allnatural.net/herbpages/stinging-nettle.shtml

 

Ren

smokeyjoe
Posts: 1428
Joined: Feb 2011

Just want to say best of luck to both of you with your procedures.    I have what they think is a tumor on my spleen,(it hasn't been biopsied, but after ten months off chemo it's grown some)   have no clue why my spleen wasn't removed during my surgery.    I didn't know they could kill your entire spleen with radiation by cutting off the blood supply!!!   I too was told by my oncologist no cure for this, but they can "control it" with chemotherapy.   My surgeon said  they just don't know what this cancer will do.  My other surgeons attitude was to deal with it and control it like a chronic condition.    

annalexandria's picture
annalexandria
Posts: 2213
Joined: Oct 2011

and JBG too.  My SIL's sister had this surgery done in her fight against lymphoma, and she did fine.  Reached remission and lived for many years afterwards (she did pass away a couple of years ago, but it wasn't cancer-related).  I hope all goes well with you, and that this is a step towards beating back the beast.  Reaching remission may be a challenge, but I've seen enough cases of people who have achieved it against the odds to believe that it is impossible.  Sending you strength and hugs~AA

k44454445's picture
k44454445
Posts: 494
Joined: Jul 2012

the surgery helps you & jbg. praying for both of you!

hugs

judy

Subscribe with RSS
About Cancer Society

The content on this site is for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition. Use of this online service is subject to the disclaimer and the terms and conditions.

Copyright 2000-2014 © Cancer Survivors Network