Apr 13, 2004 - 3:26 pm
I was diagnosed in November 03' at the age of 52 with colorectal cancer following a colonscopy. I had 25 radiation/chemotherapy (Xeloda) treatments in December and January to shrink the tumor and was lucky enough to have few side effects. I had surgery on 2/23/04. The tumor was so low in my rectum I needed a permanent colostomy and perineal resection as the tumor had invaded the perirectal soft tissue. On 3/22/04, I began 6 months of chemo with 5 FU & leucovorin. I will have 6 weeks on, 2 off, 6 on, 2 off and the final 6 treatments, so I will not be done until August.
So far the side effects have been tolerable but the healing process from the surgery has really slowed down as sometimes I can feel every staple the surgeon put in. I was worried about handling the colostomy thing but I am doing a lot better than I thought I would as it just takes getting used to.
However, I am experiencing much more pain in my rectum than I thought I would and it is becoming particularly annoying and I am looking for any suggestions for relief. It seems the chemotherapy has stopped the healing process as the area is always sensitive. I am using a donut when I sit and that helps somewhat and sitz baths offer some short-term relief. I have returned to work part time but I sit at a desk and after sitting for 4 hours the only real relief I can get is from my pain medication. Any help for this newcomer would be appreciated.