Tomorrow will be 1 month since my cancer diagnosis....

nw1998 Member Posts: 2 Member
edited December 2022 in Esophageal Cancer #1

Hello all, my name is Jeff. I just joined this network to maybe gain some insight into what to expect coming up. I was diagnosed with esophageal cancer on 9/6/2022 and found out that it was Stage IV on 9/15/2022. My first round of chemotherapy started on 9/20/2022 and I am currently going through my 2nd round (of 12 rounds) of chemotherapy as I am typing this.

I am doing my best to maintain a positive attitude through all of this, but will admit that I do have my "dark" moments. I must openly admit that I am scared. I am 42 years old and am married and have 3 kids (10, 8 and 3...almost 4).

Just looking for any advice that anyone can offer that helped them get through this scary journey.

Thank you so much!


  • paul61
    paul61 Member Posts: 1,388 Member

    Hi Jeff,

    It is certainly very normal to have some anxious moments after hearing the dreaded words "you have cancer". I know when I heard that I had esophageal cancer 12 years ago; I was sure my "time was short". I found over time that esophageal cancer is certainly treatable . I won't try to suggest that treatment is easy, and that this will all easily go away, but you will get to the other side of this and be back to taking care of your family again.

    Some suggestions:

    1. Ignore the statistics on the internet; they are not current and do not include important variables, like your young age, your family support, and the impact of new treatment options for esophageal cancer.
    2. When doing chemotherapy, stay well hydrated, and be kind to yourself. There will be some "down days" but they will pass and you will get used to how to handle them.
    3. Be sure to report all new side effects and symptoms to your oncology staff. They can help with medications to address many of them.

    I recommend an online Esophageal Cancer Forum called "Smart Patients". You will find the forum at That forum has many more active esophageal cancer patients that this forum, and has a twice weekly ZOOM online meeting where you can see and speak with other esophageal cancer survivors and caretakers in an interactive environment. You can fill out a "health profile" with the details of your diagnosis, staging, and other health history and we can help you with our experiences.

    I know you are scared. I was scared. But this can be managed and you will soon be feeling better. Half of the battle is having the best information in terms of treatment options, knowing what to expect and what is "normal" and keeping a positive perspective.

    You got this!!!

    Best Regards,


  • nw1998
    nw1998 Member Posts: 2 Member


    Thank you very much for your reply and for providing hope and support! I am glad to hear that you have made it on the other side of esophageal cancer! Thank you as well for all of the resources and advice that you provided as well!

    For those "dark days", I find that I am just letting my mind "wander" and those are the days that are the hardest. Luckily, I give myself maybe an hour or so, then I pull myself out of it and move along, going about my day. The most difficult task for me currently is learning to just "slow down" and REALLY listen to my body and rest when I need rest. I am used to always being on the go, exercising, always moving (especially with 3 young kiddos).

    I have no choice but to believe that I am going to make it through this, to never stop fighting. You are truly an inspiration, thank you so much!


  • Pershack
    Pershack Member Posts: 2 Member

    Hi All,

    Best advice I can give is always stay positive. I was diagnosed with esophageal cancer in September 2006 aged 50 not something you want to be told after an endoscopy test that I had due to swallowing issues. I was fortunate to locate an experienced Professor of surgery. I underwent an Ivor Lewis Esophagectomy an 8 hour operation and spent 11 days in hospital. After 6 weeks of recovery, I commenced a 5 month 24 hours a day aggressive Chemo regime as a precaution that the cancer may have spread. The chemo was nasty and I lost 32 kilos but I was very positive and new I would beat the cancer, which I have and plan on living a normal life for years to come.

    Take care,