Ask Dr. Giles: Mom died of cholangiocarcinoma, worried she might have it too

Leanne asks

Hello, well my mother was diagnosed with CC in jan 09 and was gone by march 09… i have a history of lupus plus and have had pain for a long time in the liver region, they suspect its the bile ducts and im petrified… how do i deal with these doctors who seem to be rather flippant about it… i dont want a diagnosis from you just advice on how to settle the stress im under… my health isn’t the best but watching mum suffer and knowing the pain i am in scares me to well death …please help kind regards leanne


I’m sorry to hear of your stress and worry.  Many times stress comes from the unknown.  When it comes to something stressful, sometimes we don’t know what’s going to happen next and we aren’t sure we are prepared to deal with it–so we feel stress.  One way to combat stress, therefore, is to work to make the unknown known.  In your case, that might include seeking more clear information.  If you have doctors who don’t seem to be able to give you the consideration and attention you deserve, then you may want to get new doctors.  If you are not sure what is the meaning of your liver pain, then you must be brave and investigate.  If you do not clarify your medical condition, you will continue to feel the stress of having a large and ominous “unknown” in your life.  Information is power, Leanne, and your stress will diminish as your inform yourself–even if the information is not good news.  If your worst fears are realized, at least you will know the truth and can actively make a plan to deal with the truth.