Topic: Dad recoverying, slow but steady

Hello everyone,
My father was diagnosed w/ cc in March 06 and had a successful resection on 4/2/06. (See intro).
Well, he has been doing well. His appetite slowly came back and the doctors at Mayo in Jacksonville, FL are optimistic and have truly blessed us w/ their work.
He was on a feeding tube for just over a month and during that time began developing fluid in his abdomen area. The feeding tube was removed, along w/ his drains, and he began eating normal. The fluid continued to gather noticably so we went in w/ our concerns. They did a CT to determine it was in fact fluid and decided to drain in. They drained 7.4 liters of fluid!! I couldn't believe it. Well that corresponded to ~20 lbs of weight. He went from around 163 to 143 lbs after the drainage. They tested the fluid and found no cancer present. The oncologist was very pleased and said that he probably didnt need chemo but thought it would be wise to continue w/ a chemo regime anyways, at low dose (gemzar + something else). Well, since last Tues. (when they drained him) the fluid has started to build again. The doctors are going to call tomorrow (Wed) to schedule further inquiries, tests, etc.
I'm curious as to if anyone else has experienced this type of fluid buildup/retention and what it could possibly be (and what can be done). Thanks alot!

2 (edited by ukmember Wed, 05 Jul 2006 07:10:33)

Re: Dad recoverying, slow but steady

This is ascites. My husband also had 7 litres of fluid drained and then 2 weeks later another 5. What they don't tell you is this is not  just removing liquid as you might when draining the bath. It affects blood pressure and  protein levels which have to be replaced.  My husband had to be readmitted to hospital when his BP fell very significantly. Monitor the BP at home. Nor did they tell us to eat protien rich foods to replace lost protein.   
I hope your father will make good progress.

Re: Dad recoverying, slow but steady

Hi Patricia,

I'm so sorry about your husband . I read all your messages and feel deeply sorry . I agree that this is an awful disease .
My mother is cc and she is 71 years old. We've known  about it for 2 months . We're walking through a dark road which we do not know how bad things we will come across.
When it was diagnosed two months ago, because of her advanced age the doctors did not advise us a surgery . On the other hand, we are also not advised a chemo by the oncologist .
They only said that leave the disease to its own course.
And the disease is progressing day by day .
She is eating very little and has temperature around 38 but not everyday . We give paracetamols and she is feeling better then. Also she has some abdomen difficulties.
She has asciditis and this makes her uncomfortable .
Patricia , do you recommend to drain it ?
In one of your messges, I read about the Vitamin K is very good .Our oncologist advised us to apply it once a week. I hope she can feel better. It also prevents internal bleeding the doctor says.
She also takes Milk Thistle every day .

She doesn't know anything about her disease and waiting to get well soon and making plans for the future and this makes me terribly sorry..

Do you have any comments on my mother's case ?

I wish you all the best Patricia and healthy days for you and for your family.
Take care ,

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Re: Dad recoverying, slow but steady

I think you should speak to your doctor about the ascites. It can become really uncomfortable and the abdomen becomes rock hard. It puts stress on the kidneys too. Certainly my husband felt much better after the drainage but it recurred within two weeks. As far as I have read there is nothing that can prevent it occurring again since it is thought to be due to metastases in the peritoneum - lining of the abdomen. The best thing is to keep comfortable and at ease. Your mother's situation sounds rather like my husbands. One consolation to me was that although he was uncomfortable he had no pain and he was able to talk to us and we could make him laugh and feel good.
I wish your mother all the best and you and your family strength and courage.


Re: Dad recoverying, slow but steady

Hi ,

Patricia, Thanks a lot for your reply .

The doctor doesn't suggest to drain it for this moment  since it will re-occur ," however if she feels very discomfortable you can try ," the doctor says.
On the other hand, she has started to cough when she lays down. Maybe there is a metasthas through her lungs and also the lungs can be drained after a while, I don't know.

It is a tough road . I pray for mum and try to keep her happy .

Take care ,


Re: Dad recoverying, slow but steady

My husband also had the coughing. He brought up clear mucous which was something he hadn't done before. His cousin who was with me and is a doctor said it had something to do with stress on the kidneys.

I don't really know how to say this but...These are symptoms that my husband has in the last few days of his life. I called my children to be with him and we were together for three days where he was conscious and able to talk to us. We looked at family photographs and the children massaged his feet and back. We all feel fortunate that we were able to do so. It may be different for your mother but we had very little time and we are thankful that we were with him at home.

Re: Dad recoverying, slow but steady

Dawn had trouble with ascites following her resection. After approximately two months, they began to finally recede when her liver function got closer to normal. There are many different causes of ascites. Dawn