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Omentum surgery/removal questions

sk_Nebraska
Posts: 26
Joined: Sep 2013

Hi all, I had hoped to get thru the holidays before tackling this topic, but my abdomin doesn't look "right" and the CT in August showed cancer in the omentum fat.  I want to explore surgerry. Have not had any surgerry since diagnosis in May via laproscopic. Surgeon said could not do surgery, would have to do chemo.

Taxol/carbo worked great until infection. Now on 3 weeks on Abraxane (paclitaxel) with Avastin added to week one only. Then one week off.  There is a buldge at my waistline, right side--new.  Thinking it is the omentum???

Julie, Carole, Nadine, and anyone else I need info. Cannot remember who has had the surgery, but would really appreciate anything you can add on the omentum surgery topic for me. Will have the discussion with onc in January.

Flying solo to have Christmas with daughtergrandson on Tues the 24th with hubby joining for weekend after new year. We didn't want daughter to be alone for holiday since ex gets grandson for Christmas eve and day. First time.

Blessings of the season to all--I count all of you as blessings--thank you!!!

Sue

 

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 1532
Joined: Mar 2010

It had no effect on my lifestyle.  There was cancer seeded throughout it, so my surgeon removed it.  It isn't a major organ, just a protective fat layer.  What is your question/concern?

sk_Nebraska
Posts: 26
Joined: Sep 2013

Arub--thanks for the response! Hope December is being kind to you, we are in the midst of ice drizzle.

Alexandra--if you read this --as soon as I submitted my request, I saw that I did not include you, and you and the others have had such great posts.  Please add too. I lam sure I have left someone off and could not remember who had surgery--my brain is toast.

Questions:  Length hospital stay, length of recovery at home ie how long before driving?  Chemo sschedule during this perriod, what do wbc numbers  need to be to have the surgery. I am told most have this with debulking before chemo--missed that boat.  What pain reliever worked for you? Are there choices I will be given by the surgeon?

My oncologist's nurse said no one in my home city is willing to do the procedure, so patients are referred to our Nebraska Medical Centerr in Omaha. I had a consult there for my infection in October and they are great! It was on my radar to get surgery/ca consult there during the new year. I trust my onc totally--he was my onc 15 years ago--

I know i will think of more questions--please bombard me with details.

Thanks and blllessings to all, Sue

JulieBelle's picture
JulieBelle
Posts: 61
Joined: Jul 2013

Hi Sue

I too had my omentum removed as part of debulking surgery following 4 cycles of carbo/taxol.  Like Abrub's it was seeded with microscopic cancers and I have not had any problems or difficulties without it.  This was done in March 2012.  I was in hospital for about 10-12 days and had painkillers via epidural - amazing result for me.   I started back on carbo/taxol approx 3 weeks later. I can't recall how long before I drove but think probably 6-8 weeks following surgery.

Enjoy your Christmas with your daughter.

Julie  

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 1532
Joined: Mar 2010

Mine was done by a colorectal surgical oncologist, but in my case, the peritoneal cancer was mets from my appendix cancer.  I had a specialist surgeon, and then followed with IntraPeritoneal chemo, but again, based on a colorectal cancer.

(Side note - even without my omentum, I've managed to put on substantial belly flab.  I gained lots of weight post chemo.)

Alice

Mfree
Posts: 2
Joined: Jan 2014

Hi Sue,

i am new to this board and new to this disease. i found out on Dec 11, 2013 that my pap had cancer cells and it's been a whirlwind since. I had a ct scan that showed growths in my omentum so I had it removed along with all my female parts on Jan 6. I'm still recovering from this and we are trying to set up my chemo. I am waiting to hear if I will be involved in a clinical trial with Avistin and a new PARP inhibitor. Until then, it's just waiting. I wanted to answer your questions, in case you haven't had the surgery yet.

My actual surgery was about 2 or so hours since there wasn't visible cancer anywhere but on my omentum. They will check many organs to make sure cancer isn't lurking and will remove when found. They did a wash of my area and found microscopic cancer cells. 

I was in the hospital for 2 nights. My surgery began at 4 pm and I don't remember much of that day. I was on an IV and had a catheter so I didn't need to do much. The next day I had pain and loved my Percocet and prescription Motrin. I was up and walking that day and I left the hospital the next day. 

I drove for the first time a few days ago and feel better every day. The first week I pretty much layer on my recliner and didn't leave except to go to the bathroom. Eating is challenging because elimination is challenging. I resorted to taking dulcolax which helped.

I took the extra strength prescription Motrin and the Percocet for the first few weeks. They didn't give me choices but these worked well for me. I am doing just fine without my omentum, I don't notice a change in how my body looks or feels. 

I have so many questions about what to expect with chemo. I'll be on carob and taxol and maybe the 2 additions. I have kids at home so am trying to keep positive for them. 

I wish you all the best luck fighting this rare cancer.

Michelle

sk_Nebraska
Posts: 26
Joined: Sep 2013

Julie and arub,  thanks for the information. I am amazed that both of you had such positive comments. The surgeons here are almost afraid to tackle. maybe because they would be general surgeons. My youngest daughteer is a pediatrician and she was very pessimistic about the ability to remove omentum. Kids and adults are soooooo different and she seems to interact with the most critical--hospitalist at a major childrens hospital , so I take some things with a " so anxious to get it gone!  My ca125 at diagnosis was in the 5 digits--sure due to no surgery. With the BC had masectomey prior to chemo--onc not happy, but Im glad i did it that way.

Thanks for the info. Are there any complications I should know about?   CONSTIPATION  has given me the incentive to invest in MiraLax:)

 

Sue

JulieBelle's picture
JulieBelle
Posts: 61
Joined: Jul 2013

Hi Sue

My surgery was done by a gyne-oncologist not a general surgeon.  I didn't have any complications - re constipation I am fortunate probably that my large bowel was removed when I was in my 20's so that is something that doesn't trouble me so I can't advise on that point.

Cheers, Julie 

Nflinchum
Posts: 73
Joined: Jun 2012

Hi Sue,

I too like Julie had my debulking surgery prior to my chemo with everything being removed at that time. I was full of disease and was in a 51/2 surgery. I was in the hosiptal for 8 days one day including my portacath being put in. I flew from North Carolina to Texas for a second opinion when I had recovered for 5 weeks. They wanted to start my chemo at 3 weeks after surgery but I went to get a second opinion. I wasn't suppose to drive until 6 to 8 weeks but I drove to my work in 5 weeks. I healed really well and fast. Good luck to you and if you have any more questions I will be happy to answer. Praying for you.

Merry Christmas to you and your family!

Nadine

Susan P's picture
Susan P
Posts: 68
Joined: Sep 2013

Hi Sue - I was dioagnosed Spring 2013 - late diagnosis as most - alllowing time for cancer to metasticize  to  organs in the abdominal cavity.

 

I took 2 rounds of 6 chemo treatments with carboi/ taxol to shrink the mets canc er before surgery--- it is more successful the smaller the tumors   - figured they knew best.

 

 

I see a gyne/onc who difd the surgery on Oct 29 & was very pleased with the results  

I was in the hosp about 10 days - I have other medical problems pain was addressed with a "happy button"   morphine on demand with a set limit.

 

All in all I can't say pain was a huge problem

 

avg recovery time is 6-8 weeks with nno heavy lifting for 3 mos.  I had no complications or real problems

 

I was both excited & scared 5to get a date excited - to be doing something positive in the fight  scarecd- of the unknown

 

wqe live in a small agriculture town & have to travel 2 hrs ea way for my cancer care & surgery

 

 

best wishes

 

SusanP

seatown's picture
seatown
Posts: 220
Joined: Sep 2012

I did not have omentum removed--so far as I know! (I should know, & I'll fix that. I still have a nice flap of tummy flab, so I assume the omentum is still there.) Upon my diagnosis I went straight to chemo. I've always thought that was because 4 yrs before, I had a complete hysterectomy including ovaries. Upon completion of my 1st chemo course in Dec. 2012, surgery was recommended. I was told it was because it wasn't entirely clear via scans, etc., what remained in my peritoneum. PET scan in Sept. 2012 showed great decrease in largest tumors & complete absence of others; PET scan in Dec. 2012 showed not that much more change.

Before surgery the medical advice was that what remained was likely mere scar tissue, but could be cancerous. So upon completion of surgery in Feb. 2013, gynecological oncology surgeon said no visible cancer; unfortunately, a week or so later 3 of 6 biopsies were still positive for cancer. That's why I embarked on more chemo in March 2013; just finished it all this week. I was supposed to go home the same day as surgery, but the doc decided to keep me overnight because my oxygen level was a little low. Surgery was hoped to be laparascopic; turned out he made a small incision above my navel. I don't remember much about pain, except having those abdominal muscles cut took some time for recovery.

Unfortunately, my CA 125 has been rising steadily since last summer, tho in Sept I was declared "no evidence of disease." I have found these references:

  • "High values of CA-125 in a woman who has been treated for ovarian cancer may mean that the cancer has returned. Often the high CA-125 level is found many months before the return of cancer can be found in another way."--WebMD
  • "Among patients in complete clinical remission, a progressive low-level increase in serum CA-125 levels is strongly predictive of disease recurrence."--Journal of Clinical Oncology

The last describes me precisely, & my CA 125 is now out of the normal range. My oncologist says he can't find anything by palpating my abdomen. I go in for a CT scan on New Year's Eve and a few days later will hear what is recommended next. I will not be surprised to be told my cancer has recurred. As always, details are at www.CaringBridge.org/visit/CaroleSeaton/journal

Good luck! Enjoy your holiday with family. Sorry I can't be more help except to provide my own experience. . . .

sk_Nebraska
Posts: 26
Joined: Sep 2013

Chemo will be different but not unmanageable,  Start the anti nauseau Zofran the night of your first chemo. You wont have nausea until probably mid day 2 but good to get it controlled.  My nausea usually was gone by late day 3. Took compazine in between after that,.If you get ahead of it you won't have it. Besure to drink minimum 8 glasses of water daily--flush kidneys.  Get a reliable laxative on hand. Miralax powder works for me. Twice daily. Stock up on Poise pads, Serenity (depends) just in case. Also wet wipes for clean up. Keep up the hygeine.  I got a used diaperr genie for those unplanned monents. Goold luck.I am meetin with surgeon for hot chemo surgery consult. Will have lots of questions for you then.

Hang in there. Get on an antidepressant if you need to!! I hooked up with a nurse navigator thru the ACS who acted as a councelor when I had bc.Shewas great.

Good Luck!!!!!

Sue

 

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