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Newly Diagnosed

camicom
Posts: 20
Joined: Jun 2019

On 6/17 I had a colonoscopy done because of some rectal bleeding I had on 5/13. They had done a pelvic/abdominal CT which came back normal. After the colonoscopy my wife and I waited for the doc to come in expecting something minor. Boy, we were wrong, he found the following:

An ulcerated 5 cm mass (which is considered big) in my transverse colon with stigmata of recent bleeding of malignant appearance. He crossed off malignant and wrote indeterminate. I also saw what he set to my doctor and it read malignant neoplasm.

Either way it's going to have to be removed because of possible bowel obstruction problems in the future if it grows.

The frustrating part, I have the CT scan down which should of showed something that big, but it didn't..

I walked out in a haze, almost like an out of body experience, it was really strange. Spent all day torturing myself looking at cancer stories, but I guess the transverse part is the worst place to get it.

The only symptoms up to the bleeding I ever had was fluttering where the TC would be when I really exercised hard. That may or may not be related.

UPDATE:
Tumor is cancer
5 cm Adenocarcinoma
Moderately differentiated
Fungating mass

All blood work is normal including CEA at 1.2Ng, this along with the previous CT say likely no spread outside the colon or colon wall. I guess you never know until they open you up though.

Surgery is scheduled for 7/12 with a very well known cancer surgeon. She want to do open surgery because my tumor is in the Transverse which is unusual, with about a 4 inch incision. I am going to get a 2nd opinion.

Has anyone on here had a TC tumor and what method did they use to remove it, open or Lap?

Thanks in advance for any advice or info you can give me.

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 2098
Joined: Mar 2010

My surgeon prefers open surgery, because he can scan around.  I've lost several sections of my colon - sigmoid and right colon, but eat and live normally.  As for the surgery, you want it as easy for the dr as possible.  You want the tumor out in a single piece, to avoid contamination by free-floating cells if the tumor is not completely cut out as a unit.  My dr just had to do that with me, when a tumor appeared on my small bowel.  He opened me up, and removied the 2 inch section of the small bowel (with good margins) surrounding the tumor.  I went to Japan at full strength 3 months later.  Think about the advantages of open surgery in the long run over laparascopic.  Ultimately, your insides will have to do the same healing; it's only the external scar that is different.

Alice

camicom
Posts: 20
Joined: Jun 2019

Thank you so much for the response. It still doesn't seem real to me. How is the recovery? How many tubes do they typically have in you? I assume catheter, waste etc? Thank you again.

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 2098
Joined: Mar 2010

Mine was very difficult, with extremely rare complications; sufficiently rare that I recognized myself in a research paper:  "stays were normally between 1 and 2 weeks, but we had one patient in the hospital for 29 days"  Guess who?!

If they can reconnect you right away,then you'll be on a low-fiber, low residue diet for a while (maybe 6-8 weeks) while it heals.  At this point, with my bowel reconnected in at least 3 different places, I can (and do!) eat anything and everything.

Cancer is no longer the automatic death sentence it once was.  You can take the time to ask questioins, especially about advantages/disadvantages to your treatment options.  Catch your breath, and don't run with the feeling that they have to do EVERYTHING POSSIBLE RIGHT NOW!  That can cause more harm than good.

camicom
Posts: 20
Joined: Jun 2019

Thank you very much for responding. Its amazing how much priorities change in minutes upon learning the news.

 

Dave

ron50's picture
ron50
Posts: 1721
Joined: Nov 2001

   My tumour was in the transverse and descending colon. They virtually removed the left hand upper corner . It was stage 3c into six nodes. They opened me up from sternum to groin. My surgeon even ran an ultrasound over my liver while he was in there. He removed around 13 inches of the colon. It is actually a pretty good spot to have a cancer removed as the colon is pretty much the same size at each end of the cut so he was able to re connect it straight away. No bag.  I went thru 48 sessions of chemo, they can't target that area with  radiation. It moves too much. The chemo was not pleasant but it worked. I have been cancer free for tweny one and a half years. I had my most recent scope two days ago and it was all clear. You have my best wishes for a speedy recovery and a cancer free life from now on. Ron.

camicom
Posts: 20
Joined: Jun 2019

Thanks again for taking the time to respond. I am so glad you are cancer free.

 

colon3b_
Posts: 4
Joined: Jun 2019

CEA level may not be a true predictor.  I had a normal CEA with stage 3b.  Mine was in sigmoid and not TC though.  CT scan won’t catch spread with less number of cells.  Either really swollen lymph nodes or tumors in other organs can be caught with CY scan.  With your surgery they will remove lymph nodes around the tumor to check and define the stage.  It’s looking good for you that it’s not stage IV.  Be strong.  You’ll get through it.

camicom
Posts: 20
Joined: Jun 2019

Typically swollen lymph nodes associated with cancer are not painful, correct? For some reason old scars from 15 years ago(double masectomy. abdominalplasty for excess skin removal) hurt. Talked to a cancer center nurse, she said its not unusual to start noticing aches and pains because of the cancer diagnosis.

Thank you Again

colon3b_
Posts: 4
Joined: Jun 2019

I'm not an oncologist and will refrain from giving medical advice.  I think it's best to talk to your doctor (not nurse) if you have pain.  There is likely inflammation or infection that could cause pain.  I had a complete colon block (about 2 days from rupture) and hence extremely severe abdominal pain.  Other than that, I had no other pain.  I'm sorry you are having pain.  Hope you talk to your doctor to figure out cause and if you need to take any pain medication for temporary relief.

kvb456
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 2019

My tumor was in the ascending colon. I had open surgery, and a very large mass (11cm). In hospital 2.5 days. No bag. No complications. Ask about an abdominal wash (I wish I had one) as my CATS were all clear and I only had one primary tumor no one was thinking spread into abdominal cavity - but when pathology came back, there was some spread through the outer wall of the colon. A wash is when they put fluid into the abdominal cavity, and drain it - with the theory that they can examine the cells caught by the fluid and look for floating cancer cells. Though, TBH, it wouldn't have changed my treatment plan either way - chemo for me. 

Wishing you the best with your surgery. 

kvb456
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 2019

My tumor was in the ascending colon. I had open surgery, and a very large mass (11cm). In hospital 2.5 days. No bag. No complications. Ask about an abdominal wash (I wish I had one) as my CATS were all clear and I only had one primary tumor no one was thinking spread into abdominal cavity - but when pathology came back, there was some spread through the outer wall of the colon. A wash is when they put fluid into the abdominal cavity, and drain it - with the theory that they can examine the cells caught by the fluid and look for floating cancer cells. Though, TBH, it wouldn't have changed my treatment plan either way - chemo for me. 

Wishing you the best with your surgery. 

camicom
Posts: 20
Joined: Jun 2019

Thank you I hope your treatement goes well.

shu273's picture
shu273
Posts: 38
Joined: Apr 2019

Hello friend

i had the same or similar tumor in the transverse colon, March 2019. A tumor in the transverse colon is "not unique", and most Dr’s will tell you, is fairly simple to remove laparoscopically. Minimally invasive.

Our lesson learned after extensive research, and interviewing 2 general surgeons and 2 specialists, is to make sure you go to a “specialist" and not a general surgeon. The difference is hundreds of colon surgeries per year versus 20-50 per year. My surgery was done laparoscopically, by a specialist, and lasted approx. 1.5 hours, vs estimated 2-4 hours by a general surgeon. It was so successful, that I only spent 2 nights in the hospital. To perform open surgery is typically done if the surgeon runs into complications during lap surgery. Much higher chance of infection with open surgery. MD Anderson in Texas, (#1 in the country) might be an option for a second opinion. 

We chose, Siteman Cancer Center (Barnes ) in St. Louis Mo. (rated 15 in the country), with a multidisciplinary team of specialists. Our entire floor was specific to colon surgery, nurses specific to colon surgery, and Dr’s specific to colon surgery. It doesn’t get any better than that. 
 
Recommend you choose a hospital with low infection rates and multidisciplinary teams. For this surgery you want Specialists, not General surgeons. Also, pick Oncologists that will work with you for proper dosage if you need chemo. 

Alan

camicom
Posts: 20
Joined: Jun 2019

Thank you so much for the info. I will definitely get a 2nd opinion.

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 6242
Joined: Feb 2009

Mine would only consider open for my rectal tumor.  A lot is determinee on location, and extent of surgery.  If yours will do it the other way than go for it.  It's good that you are getting another opinion, most of us do.  I'm sorry you have to be here, but you have found a great place to be with the situation you are going through and you have already gotten so many wonderful answers with people in your situation.  It's a scary place to be, but can be done.  We are here for you.  Welcome to the boards and hoping you find all the support and help you need from us.

Kim

camicom
Posts: 20
Joined: Jun 2019

Thank you 

 

Dave

Lovekitties's picture
Lovekitties
Posts: 3330
Joined: Jan 2010

If your surgeon feels a 4 inch incision will do the job, then I would go with that.  While the laproscopic sounds good they still need to make multiple incisions to do that.  Also as others said, need an opening for easy tumor removal in one piece, not bits which can leave crumbs behind.

Wishing you the best and easy recovery.

Marie who loves kitties

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