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Abdominal Blockage?

SUNGRANNY
Posts: 81
Joined: Dec 2012

Hello fellow travelers,

I'm bummed out, and could use a sympathetic ear.  

A bit of background: UPSC stage 4 due to swollen paraaortic lymph nodes that could not be removed.  Total hysterectomy Nov 2012, chemo, and external IMRT radiation.  NED CT Scan Dec 2013; but does say malrotated small bowel.  Ever since surgery, then worse after radiation, BIG problem with constipation.  Neither laxatives, high fiber diet, nor stool softeners help.  Neither gyn/onc nor PCP had much in the way of helpful advice. Best relief from acupuncture, abdominal massage, and Chinese herbs.  Once I had a hard, blocked area lower left, once lower right, each relieved after acupuncture and herbs.  About a week ago I felt a hard tender area between the sternum and navel with (as in the other cases) nausea, lack of appetite, increased difficulty with bowel movements ( non productive urges.). This time the acupuncturist said it didn't respond to treatment, and thought à med Dr needed to check it out.  Ordinarily I'd hold off until my gym/Onc appt Jun 30th (unless it got much worse),  but we're scheduled to pick up our granddaughters this Sunday, and be away for 2 weeks.

I couldn't get an appt with my PCP (of course) so I went My husband's PCP, who is familiar with my situation. (My husband has mild dementia.) Much to my chagrin, after feeling around she too thought there might be a problem.  She ordered ana abdominal x-ray, which showed fecal matter to the right of the tender area, and clear below.  As she said, it could be fecal matter, or a blockage (mass, lymph nodes, or ???). She suggested a CT scan to further investigate, and said she will communicate with the gyn/Onc for her to decide.  In the meantime I have a CT Scan appt for tomorrow.

IF I wasn't going to pick up our granddaughters to head to the beach (4 hours away) I would definitely wait on this and see how it goes.  But if we get the beach and it gets worse it would be a mess. My husband no longer drives on highways, and my son lives 3 hours from us in the other direction.  Bummer, bummer.  We and the girls have been planning our Summer week for months.   

I told my husband I am going for a test tomorrow but he doesn't really comprehend the possibilities (which is just as well.). I haven't said anything yet to family, as hopefully "it will all come out in the end" (ha ha).  So I thought of sharing here, as I feel you will understand.

I appreciate being able to unload my situation.

Thanks,

Sungranny

culka's picture
culka
Posts: 158
Joined: Oct 2009

Maybe check Fiber menace by Konstantin Monastyrsky. If I`m not mistaken this book is readable online. And for bowell movement is fat important. In other words Are you eating enough fat?

nancibee's picture
nancibee
Posts: 50
Joined: Sep 2012

I was just told by an endocrinologist to switch from calcium citrate to calcium carbonate and calcium phosphate (Gummi calcium chews) because they are higher in elemental calcium. But the reason she doesn't want me to take only calcium phosphate is because it has a laxative effect. I told her that would actually be a good thing.

It happened to Me
Posts: 90
Joined: Apr 2014

That doesn't sound like something to be messing with.  I did hear that if you drink tart cherry concentrate (like 8 oz.), that it gives you loose stools and you need to be near a bathroom.

I know that you and your grandchildren are planning and wanting this time really bad, but if you are in pain and actually have a blockage, you could be in the hospital on your vacation.  Don't want to be a negative nanny, but I want you to be realistic.

My suggestion is to see if you can find a GI doctor ASAP, they are the experts in this type of situation.

Best wishes to you.  I hope you can go on vacation.  Be careful and your health comes first.  You want to be around for as long as you can to watch your grandkids grow up.

Keep us posted.  I'll say a prayer for you.

NoTimeForCancer's picture
NoTimeForCancer
Posts: 478
Joined: Mar 2013

Sorry to hear you have had so many problems with your bowels since your surgery, but it sounds like you really know what you need to do.  If your acupuncturist realized it was different from previous times, it isn't something to mess with.  Get it taken care and get back to your grandchildren.  Please let us know how it goes.

Kaleena's picture
Kaleena
Posts: 1164
Joined: Nov 2009

Dear Sungranny:

I feel for you and what you must be going through.   Have you gotten stomach cramps and/or vomiting?   It sounds like a blockage but I hope it wiggles free so that you can enjoy your granddaughters at the beach!

Sending you hugs.

Kathy

SUNGRANNY
Posts: 81
Joined: Dec 2012

Thanks for your support and suggestions.  I got a call on the preliminary results of today's CT Scan, And it's cancer around the bowel and large intestine.  I think I'm still numb.  Of all the times I feared it might be cancer returning, this one blindsided me.

We talked, and she thought that as long as I could keep my bowels moving I should be able to take the family to the beach next week.  I know warning signs to watch for, and if they develop we'll come back early. But obviously family time is precious right now.  I have an Onc appt when we return and we'll talk about options.

I'll research you suggestions such as tart cherry juice.

Thanks again for being there,

Sara

It happened to Me
Posts: 90
Joined: Apr 2014

Sara, that is such sad news.  I am so glad you found out and have the clearance to go to the beach with the grandkids.  You are so right, family time is precious.  Make many memories and come back home fighting.

 

Jeanette

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 595
Joined: Jun 2012

I was so hoping your news would be better but am so glad you got the go ahead to go to the beach with your grands.  How old are they?    I agree with Jeannette's advice.

debrajo's picture
debrajo
Posts: 776
Joined: Sep 2011

Sorry for the language, but that's  that's the first thing that came into my mind!  I am sorry,Dear, but this is just round 2 of getting back to the business of living.  Take those babies to the beach, do all the silly, extreme things you want, eat what you aren't supposed to and tell cancer to kiss your sunburned A$$!  Have a ball, we'll be here praying and waiting for you to battle the beast again...you got a lot of living to do!  Best, Debrajo 

Abbycat2
Posts: 123
Joined: Feb 2014

Sara,

I feel sad about your situation but hopeful, too, that when you return from a wonderful vacation with your granddaughters you will respond well to treatment.  Try to have fun with your granddaughters.  Life doesn't get much better than spending quality time with those we love.  I wish you well!

Hugs,

Cathy

jazzy1's picture
jazzy1
Posts: 1387
Joined: Mar 2010

Sorry to read this news.  Been there and done that as well!!!!  We're never prepared for a recurrence as I had last August and completed treatments in March.  Luckily mine has stayed in the lymph system which is better, but either way it's tough to swallow.

Try to get away and enjoy the time with your family.  Life is good so keep the faith this soon shall pass!!

One last comment, I did it and you can as well.  I was originally diagnosed Jan /09 and had recurrence last Aug as mentioned.  Doesn't matter where we are on the path, we can get thru this and live very productive lives.  More and more of us are learning to deal with cancer and possibly live with it.  

Sending positive vibes your way~~

Jan 

Ro10's picture
Ro10
Posts: 1429
Joined: Jan 2009

I am so sorry to read your update.  I was so hoping it was just a blockage of stool and you could pass it.  I hope you can enjoy your time at the beach with your grandchildren.  As you said family time is very precious.  Wishing you a great trip to make happy memories.  You remain in my prayers.  in peace and caring.

sunflash's picture
sunflash
Posts: 154
Joined: Aug 2011

DARN, DARN, DARN!!!!!! I'm SO sorry to hear this! But as others have said, TRY to put this away for the next couple of weeks! Enjoy your time at the beach with your precious grandkids! You so deserve this special family time! 

I'm sure you've done this.....but prunes and prune juice get me moving to the point I can't stop. Might be worth a try.

My doctor told me......."you're allowed to cry (which I was) one day only!! And then get ready to FIGHT!! That's probably as good advice as I could ever muster up.

Just know you've got warrior sisters sending unrelenting warrior prayers.  

Kaleena's picture
Kaleena
Posts: 1164
Joined: Nov 2009

Oh Sara!

Dang it!   So sorry to hear this.   And I am sorry, I don't know what else to say as I am short on words today.

((((HUGS)))) and caring thoughts to you.

Kathy

NoTimeForCancer's picture
NoTimeForCancer
Posts: 478
Joined: Mar 2013

I echo every word the other ladies have said and then some that would get me banned.  I am so sorry you will have to fight, again, but for right now please try to concentrate on your grandchildren.  Peace to you.

SUNGRANNY
Posts: 81
Joined: Dec 2012

Dear Sister Warriors,

Your responses and support are truly heartwarming.  

I am looking forward to time with our precious 8&10 year old granddaughters at the beach, the aquarium, a boat ride to see the wild horses, and a break from thinking about cancer.  

Interestingly, I have boxes of files I saved from my job, with the intent to sort "someday.". This morning I realized that I'll probably never use them and disposed of them.  Boy did it feel good! I think it's symbolic.

Virtual hugs to all of you,

Sara

 

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 595
Joined: Jun 2012

Enjoy the beach and the kiddos and we'll look forward to hearing from you when you get back.

Sisters three's picture
Sisters three
Posts: 156
Joined: Nov 2012

When you get home and get the sand out of your underwear, drink a cup of tea, make a doctors appt and dig in again with getting on the right side of NED! Struggles! It's what we do, you will beat it back again!

 

Lisa

 

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