30 years old with stage 3 colon rectal cancer

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Postby missjv » Thu Sep 21, 2006 9:33 am

hi tandy,
wow sorry you had trouble that sucks but do not get discouraged. i luckily have never thrown up on my chemo so i can't give you any advice on that, but i can tell you hang in there because the end results from the chemo are well worth the pukes and discomfort this will be behind you one day and you will look back and see it as a bump in the road of life. i have 1 more chemo to go then off to surgery to have my liver lesions cut off then im assuming more chemo so i still have a ways to go as well but i am determined to get better and raise my daughter. i was telling my husband this morning i can't croak yet because he would never get our girl to school on time he has no concept of time at all he drives me insane so thats why i got to stick around. cancer is scary and none of us know what the future will hold who knows anyways with or without cancer how long we will be here but we have to fight this beast just look at survivorship from our cancers as opposed to 10 years ago so many new drugs have come out along with surgery even my stage 4 disease is not considered an automatic death sentence anymore there are things that can be done now and more meds coming in the future and i am certain there will be a cure for this soon. im sure 5 years from now we will be on this board helping others who are just starting out. well nice weather we are having here in florida i did some yard work this morning and hardly broke a sweat but weather report says humidity back by the weekend, ugh! well hope you feel better.


northern lights
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Postby northern lights » Fri Sep 22, 2006 7:03 pm

You are not being a baby. Everyone reacts to Chemo differently and it is really important to listen to your body. Tell your nurses and doctors all of the side effects you are experiencing, so they can help.

My doctor once told me, if the chemo is working that hard on the other cells, imagine what it is doing to the cancer cells!!!

Hang in there, you'll get through this.


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Postby Eileen » Fri Sep 22, 2006 7:04 pm


I read your post and saw that you had trouble with vomiting. A friend of mine who was treated for breast cancer told me about ZOFRAN. It worked really well for me.

Good luck!
Love and Prayers,
Stage IIIB



Postby tandys24 » Wed Sep 27, 2006 1:50 pm

Hi everyone! Today is a good day so far for me, I love these days I am able to eat and not get sick, my head is clear and I was able to work today! The doctor said i would have good and bad days. I have to tell ya when you get a good day in there you enjoy it.
I went to my chemo appointment and told them how sick i had gotten, my doctor said "yeah i thought that might happen but now that we know I will give you something a liitle more stonger to help". He put me on Emend you take one tablet when you get there and your labs come back that you can recieve the chemo, then you have two more tablets that you take one a day for the next to days after treatment. Has anyone ever heard of this medication? If so you please let me know how it worked for you. I wish the doc would have given me this to start off with on was so sick for 4 days after chemo that i couldnt get out of bed. thanks so much!
God Bless, and always BELIEVE

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Postby missjv » Sun Oct 01, 2006 6:05 pm

hi tandy,
glad you are feeling better. i have never heard of emend my doc gave me a script for something called zofran but i have not filled it cause luckily i havn't puked yet but i have a pretty strong stomach anyways luckily. i am just hoping i am getting the right amount of chemo cause i sure do not get side effects except for being very tired and hanging out in my recliner alot and just last treatment cold stuff bothered my fingers for a couple days but that has disappeared until next treatment. hang in there we all have a big fight ahead of us but i believe we will win.



colon cancer surviver

Postby mac85364 » Thu Oct 12, 2006 1:42 am

Tandy, I have my colon removed totally, that was in March of 1995, I was 42. I am still here, my life has changed a little in my eating habits and I was reattached as to have no bag. There are good and bad days but you still are learning as you get older what you can and can not do or eat. The key is to drink alot of water when you feel like you are getting sick, it helps and have a positive outlook that helps also. There are days when I know why babies cry but I have seen 10 grandkids born so far and want to see more so it is worth it all. THe good and the bad.

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35 year old bf just diagnosed with rectal cancer

Postby pokergirl » Thu Oct 12, 2006 6:40 pm

Hi, I'm new here. I have been reading your posts and I have to tell you they are very encouraging.

I am 36. My bf of four years (we live together, plan to marry) was just diagnosed with rectal cancer. He has had all the symptoms for a long time now... around a year. Initially the doctors diagnosed him with ulcerative proctitis, which was a misdiagnosis.

We just completed the staging tests today and he has the "stage" report in an envelope and doesn't want to know until he sees his surgeon next week.

However, the doctor that administered the RUS (who knows his complete history) told us before the RUS that he more than like has stage III or worse.

I am a total mess and cannot believe he is going through this. I am angry, scared... my emotions are all over the place.

He is being treated at a comprehensive cancer center (one of the best in the nation). They have a cancer "library" and sent me home with all kinds of literature and books. I have been reading and reading.

I am scared to death and feel like my life is spinning out of control.

He just wants to get on with treatment and does not want to hear numbers or stats. He doesn't care about those because he says he is going to beat it.

Any advice or support you all can offer would be most appreciated.

He will be beginning chemo/radiation soon, followed by surgery, then chemo/radiation again.

I really cannot believe this is happening.

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Postby missjv » Thu Oct 12, 2006 7:03 pm

well you found the right place for encouragment and there are alot of people on this board who have survived this nasty cancer. i am stage 4 and i plan on beating it so tell your boyfriend hang in there i know it is tough when you are told you have a disease that can possibly end your life but there are so many new treatments available nowdays that alot of people are living with cancer as a chronic condition. im glad he is at a cancer center that is one of the best because the large cancer centers offer the best chance and also experimental drugs are sometimes available at these places where at others they are not. and if he is a stage 4 tell him to get on this board and read some stories from others here that are alive and well many years after their diagnosis. good luck!


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Postby pokergirl » Thu Oct 12, 2006 7:19 pm

missjv, thank you. He is such a positive person. Right now though, I don't think he wants to read much of anything. So I am the one reading and educating us. I am scared out of my mind, but to know that there are survivors is a tremendous help.

Do you have some good resources on radiation and chemotherapy? What to expect, how long the treatments are, will he want to go home to his mom's, will he be able to walk the three flights of stairs to our 3rd floor apartment after the day of treatment?

I know I have a lot of questions. Obviously, I am beside myself.

p.s. You all are wonderful people. I admire you all.


Postby tandys24 » Thu Oct 12, 2006 7:30 pm

Hi Pokergirl,
Thank you for your post. It all just seems like a bad dream I know. It is so hard on the loved ones that are going through this. What is even harder is having to watch our loved ones hurting. It sounds like the center that your bf is going to is great, I did not get anything about my cancer or the surgery. I had radiation and chemo before surgery and now i am on chemo. I am alomost 2 months post op I was able to have a resection so i did not need an ostomy bag. At first i was told i would have to have a temp bag but radiation worked so well i did not need one. Your BF seems very positive and that is what is needed now, also believe let go and let God, put your troubles at his feet. There is so many new drugs out there and everyday more are put into study. The Colon Club is a great place to express your feelings and ask questions, there are so many that have helped me. I can tell you I come here sometimes feeling very scared, and alone. When i leave i am comforted and i know there are people going through this as well and understand. I do believe in the power of prayer and you and your BF will be in my prayers.
God Bless and always Believe

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Postby maria » Fri Oct 13, 2006 6:43 am

Hi Tandy,
I'm 43 - stage IV colon cancer with 3/11 lymph nodes. I'm on the same schedule as you - one week on - one week off - with continuous infusion. I have three boys (22,19,14) - I know how difficult it can be and totally relate to the scary idea of not being there to watch them grow - stay positive and strong - I found my boys "fed" off my husband and I and handled the diagnosis with the same strong attitude we did. There is NO OPTION - we will get through this!
As for the nausea - again I can relate - I vomited my entire second day of chemo - treatment one. Now I'm infused before my chemo starts with two anti-emetic drugs and also take Emend orally the two days of treatment and the following day (3 days total). All of this has helped tremendously - I find my nausea subsides during treatment but once I'm disconnected from the pump - my stomach starts! I recently tried acupuncture and I bounced back in a day or so versus a week! Stay open minded and try different options.
I'm also on Oxaliplation and do experience tingling and sensitivity to cold (hands/throat - very difficult to hydrate) right after chemo - for about a week - then it subsides. Lately however my feet are starting to get numb and tingly. I haven't had treatment in 3 weeks due to low platelets- they are delaying me completing my last 4/12 treatments! My oncologist is monitoring the side effects closely since the acute reaction can turn chronic and not go away after chemo. He mentioned he will lower the dose is he needs to.
Good luck with your fight! You CAN do this.... I'll keep you in my prayers.
StageIV Colon Cancer Survivor
Surgery 4/06, peritoneum, 4/11 lymph nodes age 42
11 Treatments 5/06-11/06
Avastin, Oxaliplatin, 5FU

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Postby missjv » Fri Oct 13, 2006 9:29 am

the only thing any of us with cancer can do is fight like hell and keep up on research and ask many many questions to the doctors and if your not comfortable or think you are not getting the right treatment then go to another doctor. anyone diagnosed with cancer should get more then one opinion. my 1st doc if i would have stayed and not done my own research would probably have killed me. i was never told of surgery options, i was put on palliative chemo until it stopped working is what i was told. glad i changed because the next onco put me on a higher dose then usual of drugs everytime i had chemo if i did well the dose was strengthend and now after 6 treatments i have a spot on my liver considered residual not active i had started with 3 spots on liver now i have no active cancer. if i would have stuck with 1st doc i seriously doubt this would have happened and my cancer could have grown and spread. just cause they are doctors doesn't mean they know what is right go with your gut feeling and get more opinions it is your life that depends on treatments. i have read many places that your 1st treatments will reflect your outcome of this disease so if anyone doesn't feel comfortable get another opinion please.



Postby mac85364 » Fri Oct 13, 2006 9:31 am

Tandy is right about prayer in the recovery. As I said earlier I am now 52 years old and I am a 11 year survivor of colon cancer, but according to my family history of this cancer I should of been dead at the age of 45. I have losted my grandfather, mother, 2 aunts and my brother all dead before they were 45. I think the difference with me is the fact that I really believe in the healing power of GOD and that I had people praying for me when I went in for my chemo ( they wre outside of the clinic praying while I was in there getting my chemo treatment) I did not know this until a couple of years later because of this I went in with a postive attitude that I would be healed, either by by my body being healed or by going to be with the Lord. As you can see I had no fear, I was totally in the Lords hands. The message here is get close to the Lord during this time of trials and see what he can and will do for you. I will be praying for all of you.

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Postby NICK THE BRIT » Fri Oct 13, 2006 11:09 am

I totally agree mac, I was always a believer in the lord, but only ever went to church for a wedding or funeral. Im currently going through my chemo due to finish december, and ive been on various prayer lists. Ive also started going to a christian renewal centre, and there is a pastor there who does a healing service. free of charge. Im all for it i mean if it helps set your mind to a positive way of thinking then whats to lose?? i mean i have got a couple of pals who are a bit cynical about it
but i say to them put your self in my shoes thirty two years old with a beautiful baby boy whos not even one yet your willing to take anything on board

love and respect to all out there

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Postby Hannah » Sun Oct 22, 2006 1:21 am

Hi Pokergirl,

I would recommend the following website that gives a fairly clear explanation of the staging, drugs, etc: http://www.fightcolorectalcancer.org/pa ... /index.htm

This is a good place to start, and there are lots of other places that give good info as well - do not hesitate to venture out on to the internet and look up the various drugs, and/or to ask questions here.

On a different note, I know how difficult and frustrating it can be to see someone you love diagnosed with this! It SUCKS! You are both going through cancer, but in very different ways - he is the patient but you are the caregiver. You will have very different needs - he may not want to know anything right now, you may want to know everything, he may make decisions in a different way than you would want him to, he may make decisions that you think are bad. Just keep in the front of your mind that these are all his decisions - they affect you, but ultimately he has to be the one to make them.

When my cousin Amanda was diagnosed, she said the same thing that your boyfriend is saying - she didn't want to know the numbers because if there was even one tiny percent chance that just one person was going to beat it, it was going to be her! I desperately wanted to believe that, but I wanted to know absolutely everthing there was to know. Lots of other people in my family wanted to know too - but we needed to know for us, not for her. So I learned everything I could and talked about it to other people, but not to Amanda.

That worked for us - because the thing is that none of us know how we would react if we were diagnosed, and you and I aren't the ones who had to hear those words. Eventually, Amanda started wanting to know more, but it took a while. Just remember that everyone goes at their own pace with this - and especially try to remember that when he is making a decision that you wouldn't make and you want to yell and scream at him! The best thing you can do is to research now - it will put your mind more at ease, and you will have the information and be able to help him if and when he wants to know more.

Definitely check out the topic "My Sister Newly Diagnosed" started by Dee. There is a lot of good info about how to help someone you love who has just been diagnosed. You are in a very hard place to be, but there are people who understand and can offer good suggestions.

Of course I am biased, but I do think that The Colon Club is a great place to be - but there are other places too. One thing I don't think anyone mentioned on the Sister thread is that the Colon Cancer Alliance Buddy Program can be a great place to get one-on-one support:

CCA pairs patients and caregivers up with others who have been through similar circumstances. It isn't "the thing" for everyone, but you might want to check it out: http://www.ccalliance.org/patient/buddy/buddy.html

There is also a great website called www.acor.org that has a specific caregivers list. Go to www.acor.org, click on "Mailing Lists" and then click on the "C" list and scroll down to "CAREGIVER". If you are new to listservs, it can be a little bit confusing to sign up and a bit overwhelming to get all of the email until you get used to it. Again, this may not be your thing, but I love ACOR and it is definitely worth looking into. There is also a COLON listserv that is great for asking questions. If you have any problems getting signed up, just let me know and I can help.

I know you are so shocked and scared - but you are in a good place where we truly understand.
Hannah K. Vogler
Co-Founder, The Colon Club
cousin of Amanda Sherwood Roberts
dx 1/99 Stage III at age 24
died January 1, 2002 at age 27

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