Topic: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Hello everyone,

I am fairly new to the site and this is my first time posting.  My mom, 68 years old, was diagnosed with ICC in August.  The original hospital told us she was not a candidate for surgery and immediately had her go for radiation therapy.  In the meantime, I researched other surgeons and had a consultation with Dr. Jason Heckman at St. Peters hospital in Albany, NY.  Making a very long story short, he stated to us he was surprised the original drs. did not think surgery was an option; considering where the tumor is, and given my mother is unbelievably healthy otherwise.  Surgery was scheduled for last Thursday, January 9th.  We were overjoyed to say the least, as I know the option for surgery is rare.  He explained to us, the first thing he would do is make small incisions and look inside and make sure there was no other cancer elsewhere, even though none showed up on her CT or MRI scans, sometimes cancer cells can appear.  Unfortunetly, some did and surgery was stopped.  We are devastated, of course.  We are meeting with the oncologist tomorrow to discuss chemo.  The surgeon says that is the next route to go.  We already had met with the oncologist before surgery was an option, and he had already said for my mom to start chemo (then I found a surgeon so it was put on hold).  One of my questions for tomorrow is if chemo could possibly kill these new cancer cells that were found, and then if surgery could be put back on as an option.  The surgeon said the new cancer cells were sporatic in her abdominal cavity, and very small.  I wonder if it was due to the delay with my mom trying to find another surgeon that allowed this cancer to grow...we don't know...I just wonder.  The original hospital she was in (which was highly recommended to us) was nothing short of a nightmare for us, and we received completely different opinions from them for so many different things (even the drs within the same hospital were telling us differently from one another).  I was wondering if any of you have had experience like my mom with regards to stopping surgery because of other cancer cells being found, and any advice or suggestions.

Thank you in advance.  Everyone seems so lovely on here...its unfortunate we are on here...but it is comforting knowing there are other people who can relate to what we are experiencing.  I am trying to get my mom to visit this site.  I found it helpful, and I think she will as well.

Heather

Re: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Dear Heather, Welcome to our remarkable family and like you said I am so sorry you had to find us. And the big answer is YES! We have had people in your Mom's position and have eventually had surgery. One is coming up now and that is our Dear Porter and I just bet she will check in on your post. And another YES for getting 2nd and 3rd opinions and having surgery at a major Cancer Hospital who have dealt with lots of CC as a lot of hospitals have not. Do not be afraid we are all here for your unwanted Journey.

Teddy ~In our hearts forever~ATTITUDE is EVERYTHING
Any suggestion I offer is intended as friendly advice based solely on my own experience. Please consult your doctor for professional guidance.

Re: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Dear Heather,

Welcome to the forum although I am sorry that you had to come here.  I understand the devastation that you must be feeling as my sister was taken to surgery but it was aborted as once her surgeon saw her liver, he saw that her CC was more extensive than scans has shown. 

As Lainy said there are those here that have had chemo and then been able to have surgery.  For sure you will get a ton of support and answers from those in the know here.  There is always someone that can help whether it is answers, advice or support.

Clare

In the stars now . . . .

Re: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Hi Heather as the lovely lainy mentioned I am now as they say a candidate for surgery on the 27th. Though ironically my concern is too that they will find something unexpected once in there. ;/ and that I know it's possible that surgery could be aborted. I was initially considered inoperable and started gem cis in August. So depending on how sh responds to treatment that will help determine surgery later down the road. Good luck and keep us posted. Strength and blessings to you.

Hope, love, strength...2013 and for the years to come, Porter.

Re: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Porter, Porter I just knew you would come right away! Say any trips to Phoenix before surgery? I guess that would have to be too quick. I am already pulling and praying for everything to go your way. I am thinking of what they don't find rather than what they may find. Don't forget about the epidural. You will be glad you did. I am always thinking about you!

Teddy ~In our hearts forever~ATTITUDE is EVERYTHING
Any suggestion I offer is intended as friendly advice based solely on my own experience. Please consult your doctor for professional guidance.

Re: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Hi Lainy, no I will not.  As I have mentioned this has come as a big surprise and not expected and it is all happening so soon.  However once everything is said and done and by spring, I would love to come down there! smile Also by then it shouldn't be too hot for me smile  I am guessing around spring break time, though I have a feeling my kids will be on a different schedule than my nieces and nephew!

Hope, love, strength...2013 and for the years to come, Porter.

Re: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Well it is something good to think about as a "you deserve this trip". Porter I tell you I am so very excited for you I am going to burst.

Teddy ~In our hearts forever~ATTITUDE is EVERYTHING
Any suggestion I offer is intended as friendly advice based solely on my own experience. Please consult your doctor for professional guidance.

Re: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Thanks Lainy for your kind and supportive words.  I will keep in touch with you most definitely. prob via email about when I will be traveling down.  If we have time and i am up for it we will drive down and I will most likely be taking my kids to Disneyland. They have never been and we were going to go last summer and the week before we had our trip, I was diagnosed.

Hope, love, strength...2013 and for the years to come, Porter.

Re: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Hi everyone, thank you for the warm welcome.

Porter, I wish you all the best. I really hope you have a successful outcome...I bet you are so excited and nervous at the same time!! Like you, we were pleasantly....but shockingly...told by my moms second opinion that surgery was an option...and it was only a couple of weeks and the date was already upon us. We meet with the oncologist tomorrow....although this oncologist originally was not optimistic that surgery was possible...so I am not sure what kind of answer we will get from him.....but I am sooooo hopeful chemo will help put her back as a surgery candidate.

I hope we are both on here soon sharing some success stories!! Sending positive thoughts your way smile

Re: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Hi Heather, keep up with the positive kick butt attitude.  I hope she tolerates and responds the chemo well.  Keep us posted smile

Hope, love, strength...2013 and for the years to come, Porter.

Re: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Heather.....already you have had wonderful responses from the other, but I also wanted to chime in and welcome you to our site. You mentioned that your Mom was to have radiation treatments.  Has she done so? 
Hugs,
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: Day of sugery found other cancer cells - now what to expect?

Hi Heather,

Can't add much to what has already been said, but also want to welcome you.  I too think your mom would benefit from the site and hope she will join us soon, too.  I'm hoping your mom will once again become a candidate for surgery and to see those success stories in the future.

Love & Hugs,
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.