Surgery Scheduled

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airborne72
airborne72 Member Posts: 300 Member

I wanted to post an update regarding my situation since several of us are running pretty close in this same race.

On Friday I met with my surgeon.  Currently, I am scheduled for a laproscopic LAR on 10 October.  Dependent upon the quality of my rectal tissue and the surgeon's skill, I will not need a temporary bag.  However, all of that is dependent upon what I look like on the inside - I could need a temp or a permanent bag.  The answer to that question will be provided as soon as I recover from anesthesia.

The surgeon mentioned that he will have a urologist insert stents into my ureters to prevent damage to them during the procedure.  Has anyone experienced this?  Duration?  Complications?  I will consult with the urologist in the near future but I thought I would present those questions to the forum in the meantime.

I will also have a port implaced during the surgery to facilitate mop-up chemo after the surgery.  That will consist of 6 two-week cycles of 5-Fu.  Anyone want to comment on that type of chemo?  Your experience and recommendations?  According to this schedule I will go through the holidays and early winter while enduring chemo.  I guess there could be a more inconvenient time.  Cancer doesn't seem to care.

Jim

 

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  • abrub
    abrub Member Posts: 2,174 Member
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    I had a stent placed to protect my ureter during my last surgery - no discomfort or issues from the stent at all.  It made my ureter obvious to my surgeon, who was able to avoid nicking it.  In addition, because some of my tumor was resting against the ureter, the urologist was able to tease it away without damaging the ureter.

    As to the chemo; many of us here have had that chemo.  Some people have a very difficult time with it; others have minimal discomforts.  My strongest recommendation is that you tell your dr about any and all side effects, no matter how small.  There are ways to address them without compromising your care, and if addressed early on (when they're "not too bad; I can deal") you can avoid reaching the make-or-break point.

  • airborne72
    airborne72 Member Posts: 300 Member
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    Thanks

    Abrub:

    Thank you.  You provided the type of answers I was seeking. 

    I had a radical prostatectomy in 2009 due to prostate cancer.  That procedure resulted in complications and subsequent surgeries to correct the complications.  Consequently, anytime a doctor mentions anything to do with my urinary system I get nervous.  The thought of dealing with yet another medical/surgical challenge in addition to a resection was beginning to unnerve me.

    Jim

  • abrub
    abrub Member Posts: 2,174 Member
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    Thanks

    Abrub:

    Thank you.  You provided the type of answers I was seeking. 

    I had a radical prostatectomy in 2009 due to prostate cancer.  That procedure resulted in complications and subsequent surgeries to correct the complications.  Consequently, anytime a doctor mentions anything to do with my urinary system I get nervous.  The thought of dealing with yet another medical/surgical challenge in addition to a resection was beginning to unnerve me.

    Jim

    And quick follow-up

    I don't recall when the stent was removed. (Meds in the hospital mean my memory of my time there is less than fully accurate!) I believe it was after surgery.  I had a catheter for a while, and it may have been removed then.  I do know it was removed, and the only effect of the stent, other than making my ureter solid and visible, was blood in my urine for a while.  A follow-up cystoscopy showed that everything was fully back to normal.

    My urologist was very clear in explaining the whys and wherefores of the stent, and what the possible surgical necessities might be.  (We thought he would have to detach and reattach my ureter because of my tumor.  He was able to remove the tumor without affecting the ureter.)  I had a top-notch colorectal surgeon and a top-notch urologic surgeon work on me during surgery last year.  I am intact.

     

  • PamRav
    PamRav Member Posts: 348 Member
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    Hey there.

    I had a robotic assisted laparoscopic LAR on 3/31/17. Also had a liver resection and liver abalation done at the same time.  My surgeon also said that in probability I would not have a bag, but he couldn't guarantee that.   First thing I did when I woke from the anesthesia was to touch my belly feeling for a bag, and there was none.  My surgery went very smoothly.   the first few days were painful but not overwhelming.  The pain meds helped greatly.  I was in hospital for only three days.   The first day post surgery I pretty much stayed in bed.  Second day I was up walking in the halls.  My advice is to start walking as soon as possible,  but be gentle with yourself.  Don't try to lift anything the least bit heavy  and be patient with yourself   This is major surgery     As far as pain control once I got home I only took Tylenol as the oral meds hurt my stomach so badly  

    It takes more  time  than I was led to believe to get everything "moving" properly.  And honestly, I am still struggling a bit with that.  Miralax, MOM , all work well.  ive just finished the chemo so I'm hoping my body will finally settle down into a regular schedule   

    as far as the port and chemo.  I had a port put in prior to my chemo before my surgery.  It was tender at first and I could feel it when I moved my arm. Butnow I don't even notice it.   The 5 FU makes me nauseous and tired.  but as you know these drugs affect everyone differently.   

    If I had stents I wasn't made aware of it. 

    Hoping all goes well with your surgery.   For me the lead up till the surgery with all the worries in my mind was probably worse than the surgery itself!!!

  • SandiaBuddy
    SandiaBuddy Member Posts: 1,381 Member
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    Best wishes

    Jim:  Here's to a successful surgery and recovery.  It may be a challenge going into the mop-up chemo, but hopefully you will have a great result.

  • NHMike
    NHMike Member Posts: 213 Member
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    Thanks for the update Jim. I

    Thanks for the update Jim. I wasn't aware of the urinary issues but it makes sense since it's in the general area.

    I'm curious as to why they're doing 5FU via port instead of Xeloda. Is it Folfox? Interesting that they're doing the port at the same time. I guess that saves another visit to the hospital though you'll have it in for a while. How long is recovery from surgery? Also, how are you doing now?

  • BRHMichigan
    BRHMichigan Member Posts: 368
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    Good to hear you know the

    Good to hear you know the plan.  My surgery is on Oct. 3.  I anticipate a temporary ileostomy.  I am going to discuss mopup with my Onc this Friday.  I will not get a port.  I am opting for IV therapy (Myers cocktail) and Xeloda pills.  I hope my Onc will be agreeable to this.

    Sounds like the stents will help avoid surgical mistakes.  I was told they will most likely remove my uters as it's in the way.  This is all so overwhelming.  But...I remain hopeful that I will beat this.  And so will you.

    Best, --Beth

  • Trubrit
    Trubrit Member Posts: 5,800 Member
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    5FU

    I did the six week, 24/7 5FU via port while having radiation.  I was dreading being hooked up to the chemo every day for six weeks, as I found the 48 hours bad enough when I was doing the FOLFOX treatments. 

    Well, I was totally shocked to find out that you actually get used to being hooked up 24/7.  It was much better than being hooked up for 48 hours.

    As for side effects from the 5FU, it is hard for me to know what side effects resulted from the 5FU or the radiation. All I know was that it was the worst six weeks (and more) of my life.

    I wish you all the best as you go forward with your surgery and treatments. I pray that you will be one of the lucky ones, who breezes through the treatments.

    Be good to yourself.

    Tru 

     

  • Annabelle41415
    Annabelle41415 Member Posts: 6,742 Member
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    Wishing the Best

    Sounds like you have a schedule in place and a good plan ahead.  Good luck on all of it and keep us posted.  Hoping that all goes well.

    Kim

  • airborne72
    airborne72 Member Posts: 300 Member
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    NHMike said:

    Thanks for the update Jim. I

    Thanks for the update Jim. I wasn't aware of the urinary issues but it makes sense since it's in the general area.

    I'm curious as to why they're doing 5FU via port instead of Xeloda. Is it Folfox? Interesting that they're doing the port at the same time. I guess that saves another visit to the hospital though you'll have it in for a while. How long is recovery from surgery? Also, how are you doing now?

    Mike:

    I swear the oncologist said 5-Fu.  I asked why mop-up was needed and he said just in case something resisted the neoadjuvant treatment and escaped the surgical excision.  That was when he said it would be liquid through a port and a different form of chemical to offset the likelihood that my cancer cells developed immunity to the Xeloda.

    The topic of urinary system was my initiation.  The surgeon asked about my prostectomy.  I told him the details (when and where and who and how) plus the fact that I had significant post surgery complications (piece of plastic fell into my bladder and eventually migrated through my urinary system to sunshine, scarring me internally all the way).  I also told him that in 2004 I had a double inguinal hernia repair and that surgeon insert mesh into my abdomin to strengthen the wall.  That information piqued his interest and he said that he would have a urologist insert stents because I assume he is anticipating scar tissue, mesh and a more challenging work site.

    The port insertion during the surgery is out of convenience.  Sounds like a good idea to me.

    Anticipated hospital stay is 4 days, barring any complication or reversion to a traditional surgery.  Recovery at the house is dependent upon my mojo, but on average is 3 to 4 weeks.  After the procedure the critical outcome is a good and tight resection, without any leakage and infection.  Therefore, I will not be doing any crunches for a long time because I do not want to become septic - a bad place to be.

    My current physical state is improving.  The effects of chemo are gone.  The effects of radiation linger (mild fatigue, hair loss in my groin).  My current mental state fluctuates between confidence (got a plan firmed up) and fear (surgical outcome, disease progression, mop-up chemo).  But, I am getting ready to go to my parttime job and contribute to the gross national product and my personal bank account.

    How about you?  Have you been able to shake off the chemo/radiation effects?

    Jim

  • NHMike
    NHMike Member Posts: 213 Member
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    Mike:

    I swear the oncologist said 5-Fu.  I asked why mop-up was needed and he said just in case something resisted the neoadjuvant treatment and escaped the surgical excision.  That was when he said it would be liquid through a port and a different form of chemical to offset the likelihood that my cancer cells developed immunity to the Xeloda.

    The topic of urinary system was my initiation.  The surgeon asked about my prostectomy.  I told him the details (when and where and who and how) plus the fact that I had significant post surgery complications (piece of plastic fell into my bladder and eventually migrated through my urinary system to sunshine, scarring me internally all the way).  I also told him that in 2004 I had a double inguinal hernia repair and that surgeon insert mesh into my abdomin to strengthen the wall.  That information piqued his interest and he said that he would have a urologist insert stents because I assume he is anticipating scar tissue, mesh and a more challenging work site.

    The port insertion during the surgery is out of convenience.  Sounds like a good idea to me.

    Anticipated hospital stay is 4 days, barring any complication or reversion to a traditional surgery.  Recovery at the house is dependent upon my mojo, but on average is 3 to 4 weeks.  After the procedure the critical outcome is a good and tight resection, without any leakage and infection.  Therefore, I will not be doing any crunches for a long time because I do not want to become septic - a bad place to be.

    My current physical state is improving.  The effects of chemo are gone.  The effects of radiation linger (mild fatigue, hair loss in my groin).  My current mental state fluctuates between confidence (got a plan firmed up) and fear (surgical outcome, disease progression, mop-up chemo).  But, I am getting ready to go to my parttime job and contribute to the gross national product and my personal bank account.

    How about you?  Have you been able to shake off the chemo/radiation effects?

    Jim

    I'm glad to read that you're

    I'm glad to read that you're improving and that you have a plan with a lot of details worked out.

    The broken glass feeling went away on Friday and stuff is fairly soft these days though it sometimes takes a little effort to get it out. I am not taking MiraLax daily, just a few times per week and I'm not really sure if I need it but will take it here and there anyways. I was able to play 55 minutes of tennis including playing a few games. The serve speed has dropped 20-30 MPH but that's likely due to timing as I hadn't served in three months. The rear end skin is still a little rough here and there but I've gone back to wiping instead of using wet paper and I feel that I don't need to keep using the Depends most of the time. I've been transitioning back to a more healthy diet and I need to do some work to get enough calories as the healthier stuff is usually lower in calories.

    I stopped at tennis at 55 minutes because I had to get back to work. I did feel that I could have continued. I had cramps that evening which means that I didn't have enough electrolytes in my system. I had been slacking off on them with the relative inactivity but we played on a warm and very humid day so I could see them drained out of me. But at least I know that I worked out hard enough to cause depletion. So I'm working on core, flexibility and stamina until the surgery. I've yet to work out the logistics of recovery - at least the details of it. I'm also working on the "if I don't survive" planning for my family stuff.

     

     

     

  • darcher
    darcher Member Posts: 304 Member
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    Similar time line

     I'm failry close to the same time line.  I finished the chemo/radiation Monday of last week. 

      Near the end I met with the chemo oncologist and he told me something similar.  A port with 5FU for about 4 months.  He didn't elaborate on the frequency of injections but it won't be as intense as the 3000mg daily Xeloda they had me on.  From my understanding Xeloda is the pill form of 5FU. I also have an appointment with the surgeon on Thursday. It's probably to discuss what's next in so far as getting cut open.  I've got a PET scan in a few weeks and I'm a little nervous about that.  As beat down as I saw a lot of people were when I went in for radiation it made me wonder if it was working at all since I didn't look or behave like a lot of them. A little fatigued but I was fairly close to normal.

       The radiation treatments weren't as bad as I expected. Thirst and hunger are coming back and so is taste which I didn't really notice for a while. I lost maybe 10 lbs total which started befor the treatments began.  That's slowly coming back.  It was the stress of other things that would drag me down and it's surprising how little it took to manifest a physical response like vomiting and so forth. I'm still kind of constipated although improving. I've stopped taking the Senna S just to see if I needed it anymore and it's improving.  I can do without it now.

       This will by my first operation.  Scared?  Yup!  But, I figure these guys have done this so many times and hopefully mine will be very routine so that's comforting as can be expected.  I hope everyone's surgery, chemo, radiation, and everything else goes smoothingly and successfully.  There is no reason to allow this disease to take us out.