Topic: Update on Ben
It's been a while since I've posted - and luckily my last few posts have been in the "good news" section, but unfortunately this post isn't there.
Just for some background, my partner of 16 years - Ben was diagnosed with Stage IV Intrahepatic CC with mets to the omentum and surrounding lymph nodes in August 2010. He made it through the Gem/CIS chemo quite well and finished up all 8 rounds in April. He had about a 50-60% reduction in his primary tumor and has been feeling quite well all summer. His last scan was at the end of August and showed everything was still "stable" with no new activity detected.
In mid-October he began having a feeling of heartburn (which he has had for several years). He had been off his ant-acids - Prilosec for quite some time and both his Oncologist and GI doctor thought it might be that and ordered him back on Prilosec.
That seemed to improve his condition, and we headed out on a two week vacation to Europe to see friends on October 20th. Unfortunately, once we landed he found that anything he ate made him feel extremely full (even though he was barely eating) and he started self-inducing vomiting to help improve how he felt.
We called our GI doctor and he told him to go on fluids only and head back home (which we did). On October 28th he went in for an outpatient endoscopy to see what might be lurking, but unfortunately his stomach was so full of fluid they had to abort the procedure and drain his stomach.
The next day they did the procedure again and they couldn't find any blockages internal from the esophogus through the stomach but they have noted that the end of the stomach is mis-shapen so something could be pressing on it - or it could be a problem further down in his intestines. They also ordered a CAT scan but the results were inconclusive (partly because he was starting to vomit during the procedure from the IV contrast and it was a bit shaky), but they said they saw enough to lead to the next step.
Tomorrow they are doing an Upper GI where they will fill him with Barium and watch through an x-ray so they can determine where they blockage is. Not really a Happy Halloween!!
So, here I sit in the hospital room, once again researching here on the boards (I know I've been away, but sometimes it became too painful to read too much here, so I just tried to post major events). As always, the board provides good research information and background to allow me to ask the doctors better questions, and in some cases give them examples from real patients since so few doctors have experience in this cancer.
I will say - it is a little depressing, from what I am reading these blockages are somewhat "common" and usually from tumors lurking and growing here and there, but I will wait until the doctors assessment - and meanwhile I will hope for the best!
While I'm not thrilled to be here researching again, I'm incredibly thankful for this board, my friends here and the invaluable information it provides when you need it.