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New member-need advice-confused

frenchie1211
Posts: 25
Joined: May 2013

 I had a colonoscopy this past Friday. My gastroenterologist found a flat mass in my decending colon near the top.  I was a little groggy from anesthesia.  He said I would need surgery as he could not remove it but did a biopsy.  He said it could be done laproscopicly and they would take a small amount of colon and reattach.  I asked if it could wait until after my vacation June 27-July 7 and he said it shouldn't but I would only be in hospital three days and good as new in 10.  He gave me prescriptions for blood work, cea and a ct scan of liver and stomach. Told me to get a surgical consult and a oncologist consult. I asked if I would need chemo and he said just a pill once a day but this could wait until after vacation.

 

I know this is a long story but after reading on the forum his opinion seems a little naive.  I had the blood work and as long as it comes back by Thursday I can have my CT on Thursday as they need the results of blood work.  I should have results of biopsy in a week or two.  I know I can't have any real answers until I get all my results but do you think I should plan on cancelling the vacation?  My grandkids have really been looking forward to it.

 

Also I had breast cancer and reconstruction in 1997 and had a transflap surgery.  This caused scar tissue and a year of wound healing so I wonder if laproscopic surgery is an option.  I guess I won't know until my surgery consult.

annalexandria's picture
annalexandria
Posts: 2297
Joined: Oct 2011

I'm sorry you had to join us, but hope we can be of some help now that you're here.

I've had a lot of surgery, but they all involved opening up the entire abdomen.  This was pretty heavy-duty stuff, and my stays in hospital were always longer than three days (and you don't want to rush out of there if you're not ready...no better way to earn yourself an emergency re-admit).  I'm assuming laproscopic surgery may be quite different.  Hopefully one of our members who has had it will be able to give you some info on it (sometimes making the title of your post more specific can help to get more responses).

I guess I would consider the nature of the vacation...are you driving?  Flying?  Are you in charge or is there another adult who will be helping?  Lots of walking or more relaxing? Are you normally in good health and active?   I went to Disneyland two months after my least rigourous surgery, and it was pretty tough, but I survived.  Hopefully your surgeon can give you more information on what to expect, so that you can make this decision.  It's a tricky one, and I know how hard it is to miss vacation!  Good luck, and let us know how it all goes~Ann Alexandria

frenchie1211
Posts: 25
Joined: May 2013

Actually we are flying  to San Juan and going on a cruise. My grandsons are young adults and my boy friend is going also.  

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 1631
Joined: Jan 2013

I would be devastated if I had to cancel a trip to my home, England. But your health is THE most important thing at the moment. 

Wait for those results, and then make the decision.

My freind had laparascopic surgery for colon cancer and did really well with it. Out of the hospital in three days, feeling fine within a week or two of rest. 

We'll be waiting and praying to hear that you will be able to take your trip.  Definitly don't do it while on that pill. You don't want to spoil the trip.

Blessings!

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 4358
Joined: Feb 2009

If doctor says you will be fine 10 days after, you should plan on keeping the trip and it sounds like you are flying and going on a cruise is not strenuous so it sounds like a fun time before starting treatment.

Kim

frenchie1211
Posts: 25
Joined: May 2013

Thanks everyone for the words of encouragement. I know I wont be able to travel when I get on the pill. Side effects scare the heck out of me.  I don't know how you all handle all this. Breast cancer was mild compared to what I have read about colon cancer.

millerblossoms
Posts: 2
Joined: May 2013

Hello Everyone!

I'm a 41 year old mother of two. On the 17th I had a colonoscopy done because I've had blood in my stool (since Dec). They removed four poylps and biopsied the 'big one'. As it turns out there were cancer cells found. They initially scheduled me to have that portion of my rectum removed on the 31st but I will be out of town so surgery was rescheduled for June 5. There has been no blood since my colonoscopy (yaay) but I am still experiencing a lot pressure in my lower back but I don't have constipation. I have no indication of how far along/what stage, very little information about what type of procedure will be done to remove the section of my rectum that has the cancerous poylp or what the recovery time frame/hospital stay will be and with this being a holiday weekend there is no one to call. I've searched the internet for general info but I have to say I am a little overwhelmed. I also now have swollen glands and a killer cough. I don't really think they are connected but one never knows. I'm confused and a little nervous. Is either symptom connected. Does anyone have any advice for me? I'm quite stressed and ignorant.

millerblossoms
Posts: 2
Joined: May 2013

Hello Everyone!

I'm a 41 year old mother of two. On the 17th I had a colonoscopy done because I've had blood in my stool (since Dec). They removed four poylps and biopsied the 'big one'. As it turns out there were cancer cells found. They initially scheduled me to have that portion of my rectum removed on the 31st but I will be out of town so surgery was rescheduled for June 5. There has been no blood since my colonoscopy (yaay) but I am still experiencing a lot pressure in my lower back but I don't have constipation. I have no indication of how far along/what stage, very little information about what type of procedure will be done to remove the section of my rectum that has the cancerous poylp or what the recovery time frame/hospital stay will be and with this being a holiday weekend there is no one to call. I've searched the internet for general info but I have to say I am a little overwhelmed. I also now have swollen glands and a killer cough. I don't really think they are connected but one never knows. I'm confused and a little nervous. Is either symptom connected. Does anyone have any advice for me? I'm quite stressed and ignorant.

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 1631
Joined: Jan 2013

I'm glad you posted, but if you start a new thread (under the black Colorectal Cancer (on the right of the screen under 'Search by Keyword) then you will get loads of answers. 

I'lll post my thoughts when you open your thread.   

Blessings!

LindaK.
Posts: 339
Joined: Apr 2013

When my husband was diagnosed, GI doctor (the one who did the colonoscopy) acted like colon cancer was a breeze (which did make us feel better at the time) but only the surgeon and oncologist will have more insight into your condition and surgery after tests are run.  When my husband went into surgery, they could not guarantee they would be able to do it with the scope or that he wouldn't come out of it with a temp bag.  We did not know until after surgery, so I'm not sure a GI doctor would know for sure they can do it with a scope, especially if scar tissue is involved.

I would wait for the test results, meet with the surgeon and oncologist and then make your decision about the vacation. Flying may not be comfortable but I imagine once you get on the ship, you can relax unless your grandsons have big plans for you.  Did you buy travel insurance?  If not, maybe your doctor can work with the cruise and air line to confirm why you can't go in case you lose all your money for the trip.

Take it one day at a time, good luck

Ruthmomto4's picture
Ruthmomto4
Posts: 36
Joined: May 2013

My husband had laparscopic surgery for his colon cancer. He was in the hospital for 4 days and very sore for at least another week after. We both thought it would be easier because of the way it was done but it was tough, and he is not the type to sit and rest but he did. See what your surgeon says may have a different opinion on waiting. Good luck with whatever you decide.

frenchie1211
Posts: 25
Joined: May 2013

Thanks for the great information.  I have an appointment to see the surgeon on 6/6 and will have all the information then. Today I have my CT scan.  Hopefully I will get good news.

Fortunately I did buy trip insurance.  If I do go it won't be a relaxing cruise.  It is very port intensive and I have excursions planned for everyday. We had planned to helmet dive and go on a hike through the rain forrest. We don't spend too much time with our feet up.

That is why I really would love to go on vacation before surgery.  I know it's a little shallow when you are fighting for your life but it is just something really important to me.

LindaK.
Posts: 339
Joined: Apr 2013

Good luck with your scan today.  One thing I remembered our oncologist said about him wanting to start chemo within 6 weeks of the surgery has stuck with me. Not sure why they think that way, but if they can get some path results from the biopsy, you may know more soon.  Depending on the staging, they may want to do your surgery sooner rather than into August.

I hope you get the answers you need soon.  Good luck.

jen2012
Posts: 1245
Joined: Aug 2012

Is chemo before surgery not an option for you? My husband did chemo Sept thrum march and then had surgery in April. Vacation shouldn't be a problem on an off week from chemo. Good luck!

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 1631
Joined: Jan 2013

Talk with your Oncologist. Ask home tons of questions, then make the decision.  I mean, it's not like you are going on a world pt our. A few weeks probably won't make a whole lot of difference, unles, you worry about the cancer more than enjoying being with the ones you love

good luck!

Haji62
Posts: 1
Joined: May 2013

I would get everything scheduled up for AFTER the vacation.

Too many surgeries start out as "laproscopic" and end up being a scalpel, and opens up a lot of new hurdles which could affect your vacation timeframe.

PatchAdams
Posts: 272
Joined: Nov 2011

I think it was very premature for your gastro to speak out. 

 

First, until surgery and the CT scan he has no idea what you're facing.  Secondly,  one pill a day????????  Never heard of any such thing.  Even the most lightweight chemo is a handful of pills.

 

I'd hold off on the vacation until after all the info is in.  Like someone else said,  your health comes first.  Maybe it's benign and you won't need any chemo. 

Did you have your CT today and when will you get your results?  What were the CEA numbers?  

frenchie1211
Posts: 25
Joined: May 2013

Went for ct scan of abdomen and pelvis today.  I am taking my boy friend for his colonoscopy tomorrow and will see the gastroenterologist.  He promised to get a wet reading for me and I also have the cd results of test. 

 

He called me the other day with the results of the biopsy.  He told me CEA was normal and the results were cancer.  I thought he said poorly differentiated and that was good but I could have misunderstood as I guess that would be the worst result.

 

I have the cd and took a look at it but I am clueless.  Anyone ever tried to read the cd of ct scan?

I assume he meant Xeloda.  It that handfuls of pills.  Also without results how does he know I need chemo of any kind.  He may have been generalizing.  I am not handling this mentally as well as my breast cancer episodes.

Deena11
Posts: 193
Joined: Nov 2012

Sorry you had to join this forum.  I was supposed to have my resection performed through laparoscopy.  If that was the case, I would have been out in 3 or 4 days.  However, the lab technician copied my cancer lesion on the surgeon's colon chart on the wrong side of the chart.  They ended up having to cut me open nine inches to find the tumor.  I had to stay in the hospital around 7 days.  That incident was a mistake so if you are able to get the laparoscopy, I think you may be out in 3 otr 4 days.

Keep us all informed!!!

 

Nana b's picture
Nana b
Posts: 3017
Joined: May 2009

I was back to work in 4 weeks, the incsion isn't that big but you still are sore.    How long after surgery are you going on your trip?   My concern is that if you wait, your stage may go from a 1 to a 2 or 3.  I waited 2 months before my doctor referred me for a colonoscopy and I alway wonder if those two months caused me to go to Stage 4.  Scary.    You could go, and not do all th exucursions.  Sit and rest in the ship.    

 

 

 

 

frenchie1211
Posts: 25
Joined: May 2013

I have an appointment next Thursday 6/6 to see the oncological surgeon.  At first he could not see me until the 27th but my sister knows a doctor in the hospital and he went to see him to get an appointment sooner.  I had my ct scan and it was clear.  Blood work good too.  If I wait until after vacation it will be one month.  I'll see what he recommends.

frenchie1211
Posts: 25
Joined: May 2013

 

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