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uterine cancer after a bout of severe pancreatitis

nyllrap's picture
Posts: 6
Joined: May 2010

Well, it looks like I am shifting my focus from pancreatitis to uterine cancer. About a year ago I had a terrible bout with severe gallstone necrotizing pancreatitis. This included 5 months in the hospital, sepsis, kidney and lung failure (both are ok now), 6 surgeries, etc. I survived this (docs say the mortality rate for someone as sick as I was is nearly 100%), and the docs say I am a "blooming miracle." Shortly after I got sick, I started bleeding after being without periods for 1 1/2 years (I am 55). They did a gyno consult and a transvaginal ultrasound, which was normal. A year later, they did another ultrsound and saw a mass. BTW, I lost 70 pounds while in the hospital and wonder whether the weight loss (which I needed) dumped estrogen into my system which kicked in the cancer.

Yesterday, because I have been bleeding monthly ever since and every day this past month, I had a D & C, which showed up as endometrial cancer. I won't know what stage until they do the hysterectomy, which will be very soon. I am in excellent hands - the hospital is great and the docs are very competent. I figure if I could survive pancreatitis, I can survive this.

Any words of wisdom from those who have gone through this? In particular, what about nutrition, exercise etc. to prepare myself for the next fight? I have been walking 20 min. 3 times a day and doing wii fit exercises (though still have some abdominal discomfort from the surgeries).

Thanking everyone in advance.


TiggersDoBounce's picture
Posts: 413
Joined: Oct 2009

Hello Lynn,

Sending hugs and prayers out to you. You have been through so much already....

Good luck with the Hysterectomy....will they be doing it the open or robotic way? Great if they could do it the easier way from a recovery standpoint.

Please keep us posted, we have all been through it and can help.


Posts: 683
Joined: Apr 2010

Dear Lyn: I have been diagnosed with endometrial cancer stage 1A in November, 2009. I have had a total hysterectomy. My doctor was wonderful and did a no blood procedure (robotic surgery) I was out of the hospital one day later. Three weeks later I was scheduled for chemo and I was determined to tolerate and not let chemo rule me. I ruled it. I had almost no side effects. What I think though, my friend brought me a tons of herbs to take from the time I was diagnosed and I am still using them. I strongly believe that they were instrumental in helping me keep strong through the chemo. Also I am a Jehovah's witness and I have and still have a strong support group from my friends and family.
Lyn, from what you went through, you are a strong woman and you can also battle this, think positive. I have not had any particular nutrition, but on my own I have stopped eating meat at least for now. By the way, I did not lose my appetite or weight during chemo. I did lose my hair and that too I was determined not to let bother me. I have completed my six sessions of chemo and and just had my first scan which came out good. I am now determined to beat this cancer and hope it never shows up again. Please let me how you are doing after surgery. You can do it. Jaa

Posts: 572
Joined: Oct 2009

You certainly have been through a lot prior to now dealing with uterine cancer. It blows my mind that we end up having vaginal ultrasounds which are normal...continue bleeding (and our cancer is advancing all that time....) before a biopsy or D&C.
I had surgery in June 2009, chemo and radiation in a sandwich schedule and finished treatments Dec.30,2009. Words of advice is to drink lots of water, take the stool softners, get off the narcotic pain drugs as soon as possible after surgery, walk as much as you can. Niutritionally get protein into your body as that is important for wound healing. I drank supplement called Boast in chocolate to get additional nutritional supplements (you won't likely feel like eating much after surgery if you have an open abdominal surgical approach. I lost 20 lbs the first two weeks after surgery...because our bodies take a lot of caloric energy to heal after surgery as you know from your own lengthy hospitalization.
Listen to mental imagery and positive affirmation CDs specific to cancer and radiation and building the immune system. (Bellaruth Naparstek has great CDs at HealthJourneys.com)
Stay in the present moment with your thoughts. Honestly though I spent sometime thinking about my own death and working through dealing with the cancer diagnosis probably for the first three months....the darkest days of my life!
You are definately a trooper and survivor to get through what you already have been through.
I will keep you in my prayers. Please keep posting so we can support you! {{{HUGS}}}

Always Hopeful
Posts: 234
Joined: May 2010

You are already a survivor, Lynn. I don't think that uterine cancer knows who they are dealing with!!!

My surgery was on March 22, 2010...due to spotting on Feb. 28th, I had an endometrial biopsy on March 1 and was diagnosed with cancer on March 4th. I went through menopause three years before at 57...somewhat late.

Luckily, I required no pain meds after the self administered morphine drip was removed twelve hours after surgery so I really didn't have to deal with the constipating effects of the meds. While in the hospital, I walked the hallways as much as I could and drank plenty of fluids. Once home, I again walked as much as possible, both indoors and outdoors and continued the regular hydration, along with healthful eating.

My six inch vertical incision has healed quite well. I will say, though, that it took almost six weeks to feel like I hadn't had surgery. Healing takes time...give that gift to yourself.

I attribute so much of my healing thus far to all of the support I have received in the way of prayers and the sending of positive energy into the universe! This should never be discounted. Having a positive outlook, as I'm sure you better than many others realize, helps so much with the battle. As I stated before, Lynn, you have proven you are a SURVIVOR. Hang in there...my prayers and positive thoughts are with you.


nyllrap's picture
Posts: 6
Joined: May 2010

Thanks so much to you all who offered suggestions and support. Sometimes I am fine and am not worried a all, and then other times I almost feel panicky. I recently had a barium enema (not a fun procedure) because I have a (hopefully) temporary ileostomy and would like my surgeon to reverse it when I have the hysterectomy. The radiologist said I have a stricture, or narrowing of part of the colon, probably due to scar tissue from the pancreatitis. I have an appointment in a week with my surgeon to find out if I am strong enough for surgery and if so, if he can reversal my ileostomy and/or fix the stricture.

My theory about my development of the uterine cancer: As I said when I got pancreatitis I started up with periods agai, but the ultrasound was clear. I think the illness played havoc with my hormones, and along with a 70 pound weight loss, put excess estrogen in my system. That then, according to my theory, kicked in the cancer. Probably the illness affected my immune system also, allowing the cancer cells to grow.

While I hate the thought of more surgery, I am anxious to get it scheduled as soon as possible to find out the staging and to get the cancer out of me. I have been through so much already but have wonderful doctors and just love the hospital I go to. They know me well! Unfortunately, I will have to have an open surgery because I have a lot of scar tissue from the 6 previous operations.

Thanks again - I will let you know what the surgeon says next week.

kkstef's picture
Posts: 706
Joined: May 2008

Lynn....you are an amazing woman and have already been through so much. Am sending you lots of hugs and positive vibes....you will beat this beast again!!

Please keep us posted....we are all here for you!!


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