post op liver resection chronic pain

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gardengirl
gardengirl Member Posts: 5
edited March 2014 in Colorectal Cancer #1
My husband had colon cancer stage 2, none in nodes, 1 1/2 years ago. Last July he had his first PET scan and he had one small tumor in the liver, section 7 or 8, supposedly via blood stream. He had a liver resection last Sept. then started chemo six wks. post op every other week, did 9 rounds in all. He has pain in his liver,back,and shoulder to this day which started during chemo. It is most excruciating in the early evening on through the night. He had a CT scan in March, it was normal. A month later he had a liver aspiration guided by CT. There was only a little blood in a pocket area which was aspirated but it didn't make the pain go away. All his doctors say it's inflammation between the liver and diaphragm and doing the chemo so soon after surgery has made it take longer to heal. He uses Lidoderm,Flector patches,the heating pad,Tylenol 3,and a muscle relaxer. Today his doctor gave him Ambien to help him sleep. We hope his cancer hasn't returned. His next PET scan is in Sept. but his oncologist might order another CT for next week. He had never hurt when he had cancer now all he has is pain. He just started a new job this week which is only for three months. He lost his other job due to a merger and was at that company for 19 yrs. We found out about the liver met during his last few months at his old job. I'm sure all that stress has added to his pain. Has anyone else gone through pain like this and how long did it take to go away? and any suggestions to help relieve the pain? Thanks, Gardengirl

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  • Fight for my love
    Fight for my love Member Posts: 1,522 Member
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    My husband was diagnosed
    My husband was diagnosed with rectal cancer in this May,then the doctor started chemo and radiation in order to shrink the tumor before surgery,right after two days' chemo,my husband started to get leg pain,then we told the oncologists,but neither of them said the pain is from radiation or chemo.So we went to the regular doctor this Tuesday,the doctor was not sure about the pain either,but he ordered a MRI for my husband,so my husband will take a MRI next Monday.Anyway I just hope there is nothing wrong with the bone.I suggest you to mention about the MRI to the doctor,so they can order the test for your husband.
  • christellabelle
    christellabelle Member Posts: 24
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    Sorry
    Sorry to hear that. it's hard when you have pain and not knowing where it's coming from. after my second surgery i was having a lot of back pain. Ct and xray revealed water in my lung so they have it removed and i was better. after my chemo i was experiencing a lot of shoulder pain. they do all test, bone scan, ct, xray they didn't see nothing, but they say it might be athritis. I take tylenol for it, but now it comes and go. in his case i don't know what to say, but give me the name of the chemo he had, i could ask more for you about it.

    christelle
  • snommintj
    snommintj Member Posts: 601
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    Sorry
    Sorry to hear that. it's hard when you have pain and not knowing where it's coming from. after my second surgery i was having a lot of back pain. Ct and xray revealed water in my lung so they have it removed and i was better. after my chemo i was experiencing a lot of shoulder pain. they do all test, bone scan, ct, xray they didn't see nothing, but they say it might be athritis. I take tylenol for it, but now it comes and go. in his case i don't know what to say, but give me the name of the chemo he had, i could ask more for you about it.

    christelle

    I think I had the exact pain
    I developed an abscess after my 2nd resection. The thing simply wouldn't go away. I fell into septic shock 6 times in 3 months. I have spent almost 3 full months in the ICU. I had tubes and drains and vacuums and aspirations and stints and then more tubes. About mid april things were looking up. But I relapsed with another abscess. It was absolutely horrible. The abscess developed between my lung and my liver. The pain was excruciating. The increased pressure made it almost impossible to breathe and my right lung was collapsing. I was operated on and the doctors drained the fluid. They gave me antibiotics and the abscess went away. The pain lingered almost 6 weeks after the abscess went away. I couldn't sleep or even get comfortable in any position. I had a stint put in my liver many weeks earlier to allow my liver to drain into colon. This helped fight the infection. I went to have the stint taken out, but I had already passed it. My gastro Dr. prescribed me a prevpac to mop up any infection that might have remained in my gi tract. About 3-4 days into the prevpac my liver-lung finally quit hurting. I'm convinced I had some residual inflammation caused by some bacteria that the prevpac wiped out. Prevpac is just a combination of amoxycillin and biaxin. Check with your Dr to see if there is an antibiotic to help out. Also, an anti-inflammatory is the only thing that worked to lessen the pain. All the pain meds in the world were available and the only thing that worked was ibuprofen.
  • gardengirl
    gardengirl Member Posts: 5
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    snommintj said:

    I think I had the exact pain
    I developed an abscess after my 2nd resection. The thing simply wouldn't go away. I fell into septic shock 6 times in 3 months. I have spent almost 3 full months in the ICU. I had tubes and drains and vacuums and aspirations and stints and then more tubes. About mid april things were looking up. But I relapsed with another abscess. It was absolutely horrible. The abscess developed between my lung and my liver. The pain was excruciating. The increased pressure made it almost impossible to breathe and my right lung was collapsing. I was operated on and the doctors drained the fluid. They gave me antibiotics and the abscess went away. The pain lingered almost 6 weeks after the abscess went away. I couldn't sleep or even get comfortable in any position. I had a stint put in my liver many weeks earlier to allow my liver to drain into colon. This helped fight the infection. I went to have the stint taken out, but I had already passed it. My gastro Dr. prescribed me a prevpac to mop up any infection that might have remained in my gi tract. About 3-4 days into the prevpac my liver-lung finally quit hurting. I'm convinced I had some residual inflammation caused by some bacteria that the prevpac wiped out. Prevpac is just a combination of amoxycillin and biaxin. Check with your Dr to see if there is an antibiotic to help out. Also, an anti-inflammatory is the only thing that worked to lessen the pain. All the pain meds in the world were available and the only thing that worked was ibuprofen.

    pain
    Hi Snommintj, Thanks for the info. I'll check with his doctor on the antibiotic. Most of the time nothing works on relieving his pain. The ambien has been helping him to sleep. He doesn't have a gallbladder so, I'm thinking his pain could be from digesting and this could be putting pressure on his liver. His doctor may order another CT scan soon, before the PET scan in Sept. We hope you are feeling well yourself. Thanks, Gardengirl
  • Zoe2
    Zoe2 Member Posts: 3
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    Pain
    I had colon cancer with a resection, septic shock, coma, multiple organ failure and so forth. The pain started after the 1st surgery (had 4), and never went away. I had MRSA so they said I was too sick for chemo. No return of the cancer (although I'm being seen for a suspicious mass next week). I think the pain has to do with nerve damage and inflamation. A shot of "Toradol" anti-inflamatory makes it go away for about 4 days, but you can only have 1 shot a month. Castor oil on a cloth applied with a heating pad helps as well. Oh I used the Lidoderm as well, just good for "surface" pain. I had nerve ablation in my back, that actually stopped most of the back pain (the best treatment out of so many that I've had), but they said they can't do anything for the gut pain. Good luck to you, it's been almost 3 years for me, my next step is to go to a head doctor who is supposed to teach me to learn to live with pain.