endoscope while getting chemo?

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Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2017 10:38 am

endoscope while getting chemo?

Postby betula » Sat Oct 06, 2018 8:34 am

Hey there,

My husband had rectal cancer first diagnosed in 12/2016 and in 6/2018 a routine follow up ct scan found three small tumors in rt. lung and also some cancer at his original tumor spot. He did end up with a colostomy from the first surgery and had been doing great with no problems at all so this was quite a shock to us.

To make a long story short, around the time that we found out about the new cancer he started having some digestive issues such as bloating, little out put, etc. Ct scans, pet scan and x ray's later they could not find anything causing the constipation and cramping so they began chemo. He is on Folfiri.

He ended up in the hosptial three days after the first two treatments with what they are saying was a small bowel blockage. He has had four treatments now and we managed to keep him out of the hospital but continues to have these digestive issues that they are saying are due to adhesions. While in the hospital, GI was consulted but they did not agree to doing any type of scope because they felt the risk outweighed the reward as they likely would not be able to see what was causing the issue. His surgeon who did the initial surgery does not want to do any other surgery to find adhesions due to risk of causing more adhesions. His oncologist gave us a name of a surgeon that may be more willing to do a miminally invasive surgery for adhesions. We would like to rule out anything else that may be causing this before looking at doing that.

My question is has anyone had either an endoscopy or colonoscopy while doing chemo? In my lay person brain I don't understand why they cannot do scopes to see if they can see anything causing this. Are scopes that difficult on the body? My husband is pretty miserable and according to our oncologist his tumor load is not that great so I feel that whatever time he has left should be in best quality of life that he can and I don't feel it is right now.

Thank you in advance for any insight you can provide. This is such a confusing ride and for a control freak such as myself, not having answers to what is causing this is maddening.

Posts: 32
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2018 11:45 am
Location: Colorado

Re: endoscope while getting chemo?

Postby mandosquiddy » Sat Oct 06, 2018 11:49 am

When I was in the middle of Folfox treatment I had a colonoscopy. I don't recall either my oncologist of GI doc being concerned about the chemo and the scope. I did make sure to do the scope on an off week so I didn't feel like crap on that particular day.
4/2017 DX: sigmoid colon cancer
stage II with one positive margin
5/2017 - 11/17 12 rounds of FOLFOX
11/17 - 12/17 Increase in back pain and testicular pain.
CEA increased, CT scan indicated mass on rectal portion of colon
1/18 - 2/18 25 rounds of radiation treatment
5/18 surgery, interoperative radiation, bladder/ureter modification
7/18 normal blood work and CT scan
9/18 increased CEA, mass on outside of small intestine
10/18 Debulking surgery/illeostomy
1/19 Ostomy reversal

Deb m
Posts: 489
Joined: Tue Jan 14, 2014 10:08 am

Re: endoscope while getting chemo?

Postby Deb m » Mon Oct 08, 2018 9:19 am

I remember our oncologist telling us to wait a couple of months after completing chemo to have another colonoscopy. He said we needed time to let the colon heal as well as letting his blood counts rebound completely to avoid a bleed or infection. I would assume it's the same with the procedure they want to do for you.

deb m

Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2018 11:08 am

Re: endoscope while getting chemo?

Postby gobsmacked » Mon Oct 08, 2018 12:53 pm

I had a colonoscopy and endoscopy while on FOLFOX but was sure to schedule it towards the end of a cycle and not the beginning to let my stomach settle from the chemo first. I didn't feel great the night after the two procedures with some nausea and cramping but felt ok the next day. Of course, I've not had bowel surgery so it's a different situation that your husband is in.
4/18 - Dx stage IV liver cancer
5/18 - 7/18 Cisplatin + Gemzar (3 cycles)
7/18 - PET scan - chemo not working & spot in colon
7/18 - Start FOLFOX + Erbitux
7/18 - Chged Dr - start FOLFOX +Vectibix - CEA 2216
8/18 - Colonoscopy verified tumor - Dx chged to CRC w/ mets to liver (multiple & large in all lobes)
8/18 - CEA 576 (8/15) 282 (8/28) - Liver functions back within normal range
9/18 - CT Scan shows "significant" decrease in multiple liver masses (largest shrunken by 50%) - CEA 84

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