Not locally advanced--it's actually stage 4
Well, that was a surprise. All the scans showed my cancer contained to the pancreas. Yesterday's laparoscopy, unfortunately, showed that it has spread to the diaphragm and maybe a couple of other spots. So in the space of 3-4 weeks, I've gone from totally healthy to stage 4. The lap procedure went well, and I feel fine. We installed a chemo port, and we'll see the med onc Monday morning. The goal, of course, is to beat it, but knowing that is unlikely, we'll also aim for quality and quantity of life and comfort along the way. Meanwhile, I will be looking at resources here and elsewhere and, yes, making plans so everything is organized for my husband and kids. Whew.
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Kudos to your attitude and spirit! Wish you all the luck..
Please, do not say “unlikely”. Do distract yourself by organizing things in your life in preparation for upcoming chemo. Focus on your health and going into chemo plan as healthy as possible! I understand your feeling. I was Stage IV 11/2021.
In total shock – but now am NED. I’m doing everything I want to do again. God is our great physician and He has put many talented people on this journey with us. Get second opinions, pray, then go for it! There are other stage IV survivors on here as well. I don’t mean to make it sound easy but I do want you to know that Stage IV is just a label. It does not =sudden death.
@ncteacher you are now in my daily prayers. Pls reach out if I can share any meaningful details of my journey so far. Much love to you. This weekend is about HOPE
Thank you for sharing your story. It was quite helpful for me to work on some of the things that I know will be important to survivors, updating will, trust, power of attorney, health care proxy, etc. I live alone so I don't want to burden my survivors with stuff. When I started giving things away to friends and charities, I liked my house better. Now these things are in place I can just settle into today and appreciate the many small blessings in life that seem to come my way.
Good luck with it all. You deserve a break
Gardenlady. I agree on getting that stuff out of the way. My kids thought I was being morbid but like you, I explained I needed to get those things settled to give me peace if mind to concentrate on what needed to be done for my healing journey and spending time with them
Ncteacher. Hang in there ..
I was un resectable. Did some chemo and radiation. Im still waiting on some current results and need an endoscopy to see whats currently going on
Its interesting you had laparoscopy. Love and prayers for all
Thank you all for your kind words and hugs. This truly is a journey. @gamaryanne , Thank you for your reminder about my use of "unlikely." Yes, our first goal is NED! I have been working hard on getting/staying physically healthy and strong; I actually was working until two weeks ago and have been working out with a trainer. So I hope I'm going into this in good shape. But at the same time, I do want to help here by getting things organized and, yes, cleaned up, like @gardenlady1116 mentioned. My biggest job will be all of my teaching stuff. Teachers are pack rats!
@mamarina , you mentioned my laparoscopy. As I said, all of my scans and tests (CT, PET-CT and endoscopy) suggested that the tumor was contained to the pancreas. But as we all know, this stuff is elusive. The surgeon said they never complete the staging until they do the laparoscopy so they can get in there and look in nooks and crannies, so to speak. And that's where they found additional nodules in me. We originally had planned to see the med onc before the laparoscopy, and the surgeon asked whether we did that. When my husband said no, we switched it to afterward, the surgeon said good, because this changes the entire conversation. We will see the med onc Monday.
Thank you for that. Ill mention to my Drs.
Do you know what kind of cancer it is?
Stage IV pancreatic here. Diagnosed 9 months ago and still going strong. Stage IV is just a label that i won't let define me.
I don't have the specifics yet. The laparoscopy will lead to staging and details. I don't know yet whether they'll test tissue samples to see which drug(s) the cells react too, but I hope they will. @tomrennie , Thanks for your reminder (same as earlier poster) about the stage simply being a label. I am working hard to keep that in mind!