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Surgery next week

Posts: 835
Joined: Apr 2004

Well the time is finally coming around with date set for admission on the 27th and surgery on the 29th. After being diagnosed on March 3rd and having thought I was going to have surgery only two weeks later I am now finally due for teh chop. The main delay of course was teh six weeks chemoradiation which appears to have been worth the effort- got my latest MRI result the other day and they report teh tumour has been replaced by fibrosis (scar tissue) and has receded a bit so there has defintiely been some response. It hopefully has made it easier to take out and they feel more confident they will be able to do an anterior resection with a temprorary ileostomy (as opposed to AP resection with permanent colostomy).

Feeling a bit scared and nervous about it all- never been into hospital as patient (very different than being the doctor on teh other side of teh equation!) but looking forward too getting the damn thing out and getting on with my life. We have a 9 week old baby (born the day after chemo finished) who is a great motivator for getting better! Have enjoyed the last couple of months with him immensely adn have felt very well withni a few weeks of finishing treatment- back working fulltime and manage to run 3-4 times a week which really helps keeps some normality to life during all this. Have an excellent surgical team too who I have faith in (including the professor who first developed mesorectal excision which they now do every where) which helps greatly.

Wanted to say thank you for all the support from people on this site recently- it really has been immensely useful. Having this diagnosis so young (31) makes you feel very alone -like no one else could possibly understand -but this site has helped a lot. Spare a thought for me on the 29th (and the couple of days before- I do hate the bowel preparation/wash out!) and I'll hopefully be back soon. Any advise on coping with 1-2 weeks at teh mercy of the nurses on the ward is gratefully recieved too!

See you soon,

Posts: 145
Joined: Mar 2004

hey steve. i know the anxiety of waiting for surg. i am 35 and had a total resection of the colon and i too thanfully dont have a colostomy. i am glad you hear you son is doing so well and of course bringing so much joy to your life as only a child can. after i had my surg i was out of the hosp in 4 days and they were surprised too. they had me get up the very next day and at least walk to the door of the room and i had to do that at least 6 times a day. then of course as time went on i walked futher and further. i dont know if they will give u and epideral, i did not have one, but on the inside it feels like a big not after words and when you move if feels like the whole insides is moving with you. yes the prep is awful. bring books, your own shampoo soap stuff like that, anything to keep yourself busy cuz it does get a little boring. and most important and picture of your wife and child set up in your room where u can easily see it to help you remember what the fight is all about and more importantly what is most important in this world. my prayers will go out to you as i resume my chemo on the 29th as well. prayers of course to your wife and son and all who love and care for you and all who will care for you in the hospital. things will go well and its great the tumor is fibrotic right now. take care.


Posts: 1560
Joined: May 2006

Hey Steve,

I'm Randy, just turned 30, this young truly sucks, but I agree, this site is truly something. Good luck with your surgery and don't get too frustrated with the Illeo, it will drive you nuts at first, but becomes quite manageable, it is an active little sucker though.

peace and best wishes


Posts: 232
Joined: Apr 2003

I am so happy to hear that you have had a good response to the neoadjuvant therapy. That will make things easier for the surgeon. It helps to know that you have a truely expert surgeon.

The fact that you are in great shape will help a great deal, and I suspect you will be doing laps around the nurses station in no time.

I hear you about the bowel prep. For me, I think it was the worst part of the whole thing !

I don't know how nurses are on your side of the pond, but I found mine to be really great.
I was a bit apprehensive about the ileostomy/ colostomy thing, but have found it very easy to deal with, and the enterostomal nurses were great.

I took a portable CD player with me and found it relaxing to listen to if I woke up during the middle of the night and didn't go back to sleep quickly.

I'll be thinking of you and sending a few prayers your way this next week or two.

Best wishes,


kangatoo's picture
Posts: 2115
Joined: Feb 2004

Hey Steve--you will be back with us in no time mate.I kept using words like "sweetie n angel" to my nurses and that really helped mate--bit of favouratism my way!Just kidding!They were all great and really looked after me.Your apprehension about the surgery is pretty normal Steve--hell, I was scared shitless--scuse me french!
Make sure you tell your nurses if you have any pain that is not what you expected--sure, the aftermath will be a little uncomfortable, but bareable.Pain management is the key to a speedy recovery.I agree with Kris--hospital gets pretty tiring--the 1st 48 hours is the worst--the buggers keep waking you up for meds./obs.--no sooner you nod off n they come n wake you again.Gee--I was awake most nights watchin tv or listening to the radio.Hospital rooms are NOT the place to rest--but then you will get plenty at home.
Will be thinkin of yah Steve--b safe mate from OZ, luv n huggs, kanga n Jen

Posts: 708
Joined: May 2004

Steve, I just emailed you yesterday... I was thinking about you and wondering when surgery would be. So good to hear the tumor responded to the chemorad!!

I agree with Cable - you will get used to the ostomy. I have a colostomy - yes it is permanant.... but it doesn't affect my life at all. I finally got used to it after about a year, and my friends, who are doctors, told me they can't even tell!

We will be thinking of you and sending happy thoughts. I hope every last morsel/cell of cancer was killed!!


Posts: 19
Joined: May 2004

Hi Steve, we were happy to read that a date is set for your surgery, the long wait is over!!!! It will be an incredible relief when it is all done. It is still difficult to recover from surgery but as you are so young you will be up and around in no time. When I first saw Ross after surgery I thought we were in for weeks and weeks of bed rest but he was only in hospital 4 days and was walking around slowly as soon as he got home. The short drive home was probably the most difficult for him, no matter how careful I was I managed to hit every bump. Coming home 'clean' and 'free' of cancer was the best feeling ever for both of us. So glad to hear about your MRI results, that is excellent news!!! Being in hospital will be harder for you being a doctor. Ross was very tierd the first couple of days and in some pain so he just tried to sleep the time away. He had loads of visitors but he doesn't remember all of them.....he was a bit out of it!!! Take care and give our love to Kelly & Sam....we are thinking of you all so much.

taunya's picture
Posts: 392
Joined: Jul 2002

Good luck with the surgery, I am sure it will be fine. I am glad to hear that you have a good surgeon, it makes all the difference. The hospital stay .... well, you will probably be glad to get home to get some rest! Hospitals are busy places and definitely not the place to rest. I have found nurses in general to be very accomodating if you are reasonable. Take Kanga's advice and concentrate on the pain management and you will be up and at 'em before you know it! Hers's to you and your cancerless self!

Kanort's picture
Posts: 1275
Joined: Jan 2004

Hi Steve,

Congratulations to you and your wife on your son. What a great motivator for a speedy recovery!

Having faith in your surgeon and medical team helps with some of the anxiety. Being in good shape prior to surgery will also be a big plus in your recovery.

Sending care and prayers your way.



jsabol's picture
Posts: 1156
Joined: Dec 2003

Hi Steve, Congrats on the baby, you'll have plenty to keep you busy as you recover from surgery. Don't know if you folks use epidural anesthetic in addtion to general for abdominal surgery. My surgeon was very strong in recommending it, and boy was she right! I woke up with little pain and I was ecstatic. Left the epidural in for 3 days, able to be up and walking, slept well, home after 4 nights (and this at the ripe old age of 53!!!). Needed only 2 nights of pain meds at home, and I was on my way to good recovery. What ever method you use, others are right, stay ahead of the pain.
Being kind to the nurses is repaid ten fold and a sense of humor is always helpful...I bet you'll be charming.
I'll be thinking of you on the 29th...here in states, they don't bother bringing you in early. I was home the night before, sitting on the bowl and hugging my sink; have to hate those preps! Best of luck to you, we'll be looking forward to the posts afterwards. Regards, Judy

ramona41's picture
Posts: 72
Joined: Jul 2004

know very well your anxiety. my surgery is scheduled for 7-28-04. am the worst patient. scared to death of needles everything. my tumor is very low in the rectum and dont know if i will have a bag or not. am so petrified to what i will wake up to. am scared of it all. well hell i dont think i cheered you up at all. just went for my preop today and am down. just wanted you to know i feel for you. and will say a prayer for you. if God listens to trouble makers like me. who knows. i am 41 and am sick and tired of hearing you are so young. am shocked enough. all this started about 3 weeks ago when i had a sigmoid because of some rectal bleeding. hell thought i had a hemorroid. but good luck hope we both get out okay. I say bring on the drugs.... seriously.. good luck.. be strong i am trying to be.. peace.. Ramona

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