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Posts: 113
Joined: Dec 2011

Hi all. I have been checking the boards but have been kind of in the shadows for awhile. I have done so well that I couldnt bring myself to post an update when others have had and are having such a difficult road. I finally decided that maybe my experience would help someone just diagnosed and afraid by showing that we all have varying degrees of reaction to treatment and length of healing.

First off I must say that I didnt really have too much of an issue until the last 2 weeks of radiation when the burns appeared and then for 9 days after the last treatment. Those few weeks were miserable to say the least. The pain with bowel movements was like nothing I had ever experienced, but that said with pain meds and resolve, and support from others here I got through it. I healed quickly, day 9 after the last radiation treatment the pain with having a bowel movement pretty much stopped, I was flabbergasted, 1 day I was holding a towel over my mouth yelling and the next just a little soreness. I tried very hard to maintain my nutrition and hydration (carnation instant breakfast, gatorade with protien, lean meat and mashed potatoes) and I really think that helped with the speed of my healing. For a couple weeks after that I had a few accidents, as I read here before NEVER TRUST A FART! My energy levels were very low, I did alot of sleeping.

I stayed off work for 4 weeks after the radiation because I was just worn out. Have been back at work since second week of May and feel great. My energy levels fluctuate and I have to be careful not to overdue but no complaints there. Naps have become my best friend :) I eat pretty much what I want without issue and have not had to take an immodium for over a month. No bleeding at all so far.

It seems weird to me that things are going so well. I look back now and it seems it all went so fast but it didnt feel that way when I was in the midst of the treatments. My radiation oncologist is amazed, she told me I was the first person that she has treated for this diagnosis that didnt have to take a break from the radiation (not that I didnt seriously think about it when I had only 3 left, but decided to just get it over with). She did a digital exam 2 weeks ago and felt nothing, so thats good.

I have my first post treatment PET scan 6/20 and find myself wondering if the treatment worked. I try not to let myself linger on that thought for long, but its there. I also have my first follow up with the surgeon 6/26 for a visual inspection via anascope. I basically just keep plugging away, keeping busy.

I pulled so much strength from people here, and am grateful that I was directed to this board. I pray each night for everyone on this board. Thank you!!!!!

For those who are just now finding their way here, you're not alone! The advice, support and compassion you can get here is priceless. Do not be afraid to post and ask questions and share you experiences, we all learn from each other.


mp327's picture
Posts: 4395
Joined: Jan 2010

I was so glad to see your update! It's okay to take a break from here now and then--I think we all feel cancer overload sometimes. It sounds like you are doing quite well and that makes me very happy for you! You are moving in the right direction and will continue to notice improvements as time goes along. I know what you mean about serious bailing out with only 3 treatments left--I felt the same way. But I did not and you did not! My rad onc told me I, too, was his first patient who did not require a break. Seems we ought to get some kind of a trophy for that, don't ya think? lol! I'm so glad you are doing well. You are such a valuable contributor to this site and I hope you'll keep coming here from time to time to cheer on those who are in the thick of battle. May your recovery continue to progress and I wish you great results on your upcoming scan, which I feel certain you will get. Take care!

Posts: 482
Joined: Mar 2011

I received all 30 radiation treatments without having to take a break. I was not really burned as bad as they said I would be. There were no blisters. It was like a severe sun burn without blisters. I had no pain with BMs, just a lot of diarrhea.

Posts: 1372
Joined: Oct 2011

Thankyou for your update. I think its so very important for others to hear how those who have gone through treatment are doing down the road, it brings hope, strength, and encouragement when times are tough. Although I am over a year post treatment I am having minor related problems made worse by a second unrelated cancer diagnoses. I am on the road home now, I just like to think I took the scenic route! Its great to hear you are back at work....that is my goal, but will be a while yet. Please pop back in every now and then, we love to hear a positive story!

Posts: 118
Joined: Jan 2012

Randy and all,

I think everyone reading these post should see how attitude will pull you through the roughest times. Even when you want to stop you don't, one day at a time. I too made it through without a break, however, my recovery has been tad more complicated. No worries, just take them on as they come! It is so very important that those that find us discover, that each of our journeys takes us down a different path, we all want to wind up in the same place. So share on the good and the bad. No guilt for your journey, it just is what it is. We all know we are not alone because we have each other.

Love to all,
(not the founder!)

Posts: 134
Joined: Dec 2010

My experience was similar without many complications. Main complaint would be less energy. I am out one and a half years. Feel blessed and glad to know all of you.

sandysp's picture
Posts: 864
Joined: May 2011

I am so glad you took the time to update us. You wrote your experience very well and it was very familiar. I know what you mean about naps. I never fully appreciated the value of them until this recovery process. They are fabulous! I realized that a well timed nap could keep me from needing a pain pill since pain and fatigue for me were like twin sisters who stayed close by. I have periods sometimes day after day where I feel almost euphoric about how well I am doing and then will have a day or two where I have an irritated anus with inflammation and pain down my leg which is related to scar tissue and nerve pain or something like that. I have come to accept that for me recovery is not a straight road but a sort of hilly curvy road.

Good luck on your pet scan and follow up care. I am sure you will be happy to hear that you are fine. We are lucky to have had this particular kind of cancer. Keep us posted!

All the best,

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