Topic: Information for my friend

Hi, I'm wondering if anyone might be able to offer some info and I apologize ahead of time for this lengthy post. One of my closest friends was diagnosed 5 years ago with gallbladder cancer and thankfully beat all of the odds after having her gallbladder removed and having radiation and chemo. Unfortunately 6 weeks ago she was diagnosed with cancer cells in the bile ducts. She went in for surgery today with the plans of removing the ducts and part of her small intestines but there is much scarring from the previous radiation and the surgeon could not do anything. He is going to confer with the head radiologist to see if she may be a candidate for going through her liver to reach the ducts for radiation treatment. Also one of her main arteries is closing and they may try to insert a stent to open it. He also said her liver is smaller than it should be. I am getting this information from her daughter and not first hand. My friend is being treated at Dartmouth-Hitchcock in New Hampshire and her surgeon Dr. David Axelrod. He said anything they could do now would only buy her a little time. If anyone has information to pass on, possibly a doctor who specializes in bile duct cancer or any other information. I'm familiar with this area of the body as my husband died 2 years ago from pancreatic cancer that had spread to his bile ducts and biliary tree. I thought we'd been blessed with my friend's good health, passing her 5 year mark and no signs of cancer. Thanks in advance for any information and God Bless all who are walking this walk. Patti

Re: Information for my friend

Hi Patti.

I am just learning about CC myself. This website has an area for Newly Diagnosed and there is a list of the top Cancer centers in the Country. I would say that would be good to start there. As for my family member she started at Cancer Treatment Center of America in Philadelphia but may be transferring to Sloan Kettering in New York City.

Sorry I wasnt much help.

Angela

"Love is like the wind, you can't see it but you can feel it"

3 (edited by marions Tue, 20 Jan 2009 13:59:46)

Re: Information for my friend

patsym.....welcome to our site.  You do not need to apologize for anything when writing on this board certainly, not for explaining the situation of your dear friend.   As Angela has mentioned already several (although, not all) major cancer centers are listed on our website.  We are still in the process of completing this section.  First and formeost I would advise your friend to contact other physicians in re: to the diganoses and treatment of her recurrence.  Second, third and even more opinions may be warranted.  She might already have on hand all physician reports, blood tests, scans, etc. in order to forward those for evaluation.  You are a wonderful friend by advocating on her behalf.  Please, stay in touch.
Tons of good wishes coming your way,
Marion

THIS INFORMATION IS NOT INTENDED NOR IMPLIED TO BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF YOUR PHYSICIAN OR OTHER QUALIFIED HEALTH CARE PROVIDER

Re: Information for my friend

Thank you so much Angela and Marion. And Angela my best wishes to you and your family member. It is so good to have a source for information. One has to be their own advocate for their health care or have someone step in and do it. I do not feel that everything can be left to the doctors to decide. One has to speak up and finding a source for information is a god send. Again thanks so much.
Patsy

Re: Information for my friend

Hi Patti,

Don't have much to add except to also welcome you aboard. You are truly a good friend. You will find the people here are some of the greatest in the world. Everyone is willing to share what they know and to be here for support. I will be hoping for the best for your friend.

Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Information for my friend

Thank you Carla and my best to you, I see you are a wife and caregiver. I had that role 2 years ago with my husband. It was a very difficult time for us to try to understand 'why us'. I struggled with his death but came to be thankful that I was in his life to help him and that I would not trade for anything. My very best to you and your husband.
Patsy

Re: Information for my friend

Patsy,

Unfortunately I only had that role for 7 weeks. My husband passed away on Sept. 2, 2008 from this horrible cancer.  It has been over 4 1/2 months and I am still struggling, however, this site & everyone on it have been a great source of help & support. I have also found that helping others is also helping me.  I am thankful that my husband did not suffer for very long, so for him that was a blessing. I like you would not trade what we had for anything in the world, I only wish we could have had more. I am still saying "why us"?  I am hoping that if & when I get to 2 years I will be doing as well as you are.  I will be thinking of you & your friend and as I said before, hoping for the best.

Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Information for my friend

Darla,
Thank you for your post. My heart goes out to you because I know what an extremely hard time you are going through. I remember how I was at 4 1/2 months and it is a very hard road. Losing my husband Dom was the hardest thing by far that I have experienced so far in my life. My turning point seemed to be around at the 1 1/2 year time. It was like I was looking at the world and seeing a light after being surrounded in darkness. That's the best way for me to describe my experience. It is difficult Darla and my heart goes out to you. You will make it through, you will be able to look at life again. I had a hard time believing this when people said these words to me because for me it didn't seem like a possibility. They say "The only way through it is through it". Remember to be good to yourself, it is important.
All the best.
Patsy

Re: Information for my friend

Thanks Patsy,

I have to agree. Losing Jim was the hardest thing that I have ever experienced, also.  Thank you so much for your kind words of support & encouragement. It is comforting to know that there is a light at the end of this tunnel. I, like you do not think that is possible right now, but hearing this from someone who has been there does help. I do like your quote "The only way through is through". So I will continue to go through. I do try to take care of myself & be good to myself, as I know it is important, but some days it is harder to do than others.

I will be thinking of you & your friend and hoping for all the best for you too.

Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.