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Anita18
05-16-2012, 11:02 PM
So he's been in France less than a week now, went to the hospital and got all the tests without insurance. (Huzzah for universal healthcare...) And they found tumor markers. :(

They think it's pancreatic cancer. :( He's getting a biopsy to find out for sure. Obviously we all know 5-year prognosis for pancreatic cancer is very bad. Hopefully he'll luck out and get the relatively nice kind.

I'm really glad he's at home with his family and friends, but I'm sad we at work are so far away. :(

skatesindreams
05-16-2012, 11:22 PM
How very sad.
I lost my father to the disease.

Pancreatic cancer is often difficult to diagnose.
Effective treatment is still rare.

Wishing your friend the best.
At least he is home, and will have access to appropriate care.
Thank you for being so supportive in such a difficult situation.

cruisin
05-17-2012, 12:05 AM
(((Anita & Friend))) Sending good wishes for the best possible outcome.

Anita18
05-24-2012, 01:26 AM
I suspect he's trying really hard not to think about his predicament. He wrote in an otherwise work-related email that the tumor has metastasized to the liver, so surgery is no longer an option. :( No other news on what they're planning to do, or even what they CAN do at this point.

We're going to send him a care package. I learned to knit socks, since apparently chemo makes your feet cold. I just finished one yesterday, will work to finish the other one ASAP. I'm not sure what else to do now. :(

We're also planning to visit him in France, but of course now's a bad time at work since we have a paper in review, it has a hard deadline, and it's stuff that he worked on. I feel we have a duty to make sure it goes through. :(

cruisin
05-24-2012, 03:31 AM
^^:(

ChelleC
05-24-2012, 05:18 AM
:( I'm so sorry Anita.

skipaway
05-24-2012, 05:38 AM
Anita, your friend is in my prayers tonite.

Japanfan
05-24-2012, 06:01 AM
I'm so very sorry Anita18. I can't remember how old you said your friend is, but I think he is fairly young, 30s-40s?

Keep us posted- there is still hope that the diagnosis is not so dire.

Anita18
05-24-2012, 08:57 AM
I'm so very sorry Anita18. I can't remember how old you said your friend is, but I think he is fairly young, 30s-40s?

Keep us posted- there is still hope that the diagnosis is not so dire.
He's 30. :fragile:

I suspect the doctors missed many of the early symptoms (sudden depression/panic attacks, constant pain, although poo-pooing the jaundice was IMO beyond the pale) because he's so young - it couldn't have been cancer, except it is. :( They finally started to suggest cancer after everything else had been checked off the list, and since it could have a myriad of digestive issues, it was a long list.

I'm not sure how much precious time was wasted waiting for insurance approval of every test he had here. Weeks. Probably close to two months. Is there any hope of our healthcare system changing? I wish I could do something about it, but I have no idea where to start. :(

Thank you all for your kind words. I'm staying strong by thinking of ways to make him feel better. I can't imagine what his parents must be feeling. :( He has a very young niece and nephew as well, I have no idea if they even understand what's going on.

cruisin
05-24-2012, 01:44 PM
^^ This is a problem in young people. I know someone who, at 22, was having stomach problems. The doctors tested her for Crone's, Celiac, IBS (which is basically through a process of elimination). They put her on one XYZ free diet after another, because they couldn't figure out what was causing the pain. Finally they decided it was IBS, though they never did a colonoscopy (too young :roll eyes:). Finally, she was in so much pain that, a friend insisted, and she went to the ER. They did a cat scan and saw a mass in her colon. She had stage 2 colon cancer! Fortunately it had not perforated the colon, but they had to remove 80% of her colon. Because of her youth, they were able to connect what was left of her colon to her small intestines. She did not need a bag. She also did not need chemo or radiation, because her lymph nodes were clean. But, had she not gone to the ER, who knows what would have happened. And at 22, she has to live with the big "C" looming over her head!

Anita, we can hope/pray for a miracle for your friend. :(

skatesindreams
05-25-2012, 07:00 PM
Some of you may find this as wonderful and inspiring as I did:
http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2012/05/22/md-high-school-freshman-creates-test-to-detect-pancreatic-cancer/

Sooner, rather than later, may this become one of the most treatable/curable malignancies, instead of "least".
More power to you, young man.

RIP, Dad.