Stent replacement

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  • #39420
    gavin
    Moderator

    Hi Pam,

    I am sorry to hear that your dad is going through such a tough time right now. Hopefully with your dads meetings with the onc and the doctors this week you will find out more as to what can be done to help your dad right now. I do hope that something can be done with the stents to relieve your dad of the jaundice and the symptoms that go with that.

    I agree with Andie that writing down questions in advance of doctors apps is a good thing to do as it is very easy to forget to ask something, especially when you are trying to take in what the doctors are telling you. I know this from experience as a few times I forgot to ask my dads doctors questions that I had thought to ask but had not written down.

    And please, no apologies are ever needed as to the length of your posts. Please feel free to post as much as you want and ask as many questions as you want and we will help if we can. I will keep my fingers crossed for some good news for your dad this week.

    My best wishes to you and your dad,

    Gavin

    #39419
    andie
    Participant

    Hi Pam,

    Sorry to hear your Dad isn’t feeling any better, but he has been through alot and it may take a bit longer for him to recover. My Dad only had biliary stenting and jaundice and it took him a few weeks to get back to normal. I’m no expert but from what I’ve read on previous posts I think your Dad urgently needs to get his stent replaced or a drain bag put in. This will make him feel much better as he needs to get his bile level down.

    I think the UK do measure bilirubin levels differently but my Dads Oncologist and surgeon have both said if he gets the dark urine, itching and yellowness in the eyes he needs to get his stent sorted. Once this is sorted and your Dads levels return to a normal level then Chemo can start.

    I don’t think Chemo will be given if your Dad is too jaundiced as the liver won’t cope with the toxins. Perhaps another member may know what the limit is for the bilirubin level, in the UK it’s 50.

    If I was you I’d write a list of all the questions you want to ask in advance as sometimes when you get in the meeting rooms your mind can go blank. If you are not going in with your Dad perhaps you could write them down on his behalf and tell him to give them to the doctors, this is what I do.

    Good luck for tomorrow

    #39418
    pam
    Participant

    Thanks for the posts. My dad was diagnosed with bile duct cancer in May. CT scan showed it was a blockage that was restricting his bile flow. The digestive specialist inserted a plastic temporary stent that was said to last anywhere from two to three months. The specialist here took a brushing of the tumor and it came back highly suspicious of being bile duct cancer. He gave my dad two choices. 1. Pallative care. 2. Surgerical consult. My dad chose surgery. We went to Ochsners in New Orleans who reviewed everything and said he could have a resection. Part of liver, bile duct, nodes, and gallbladder would be taken. Unfortunately, after exploring the surgeon could not do any of the resection. He said he believed the cancer originated in the gallbladder and had metastasized into the head of the pancreas. He said he would have had to do a resection and a whipple. The surgeon said he would not have gotten any clear margins. We live along the coast of Mississippi and when we got home my dad started experiencing very low blood pressure and very high pulse rate with no fever. He spent a week back in the hospital with an infection of the blood and bladder. There was also the question of whether the temporary stent was clogged up. The doctors have decided that the stent is still working to a point. His biliruben level was around 5. I think it is measured differently in the U.S. He is home now and very jaundice, no appetite, no fever, but no energy. His urine is very dark again and he has started to itch again. All the things he had trouble with before the temporary stent was placed are back. The doctor says he is unsure that a metal stent can be made long enough and a drain bag is possible. He goes to see a new internist tomorrow and then the oncologist Thursday. He is also x6 heart bypass patient and recently had heart stents put in. He is on a lot of medication and I am concerned that with his liver not functioning properly he will becoming toxic and not be a candidate for chemo. He is feeling extremely poor. He has drank the ensures and mostly eats very soft foods in very small amounts. Even water can set off pain and feeling of fullness. I’m sure many questions will answered with the appointments coming up later this week. Sorry this post is so long, but I hope I answered some questions. Any advice is appreciated. Thanks

    #39417
    devoncat
    Participant

    Hi Pam.
    Welcome to the best cc resource you will find. The nausea pills are wonderful. If your dad is too sick, you can ask for the medicine in suppository form (I call them my little torpedoes!)

    The surgery your dad had will often mess with the digestive tract. I know from my experience, food was not my friend for a long time. The nutritionist at the hospital wanted me to add cream, oil, and other fats to my diet to help get enough calories because I couldnt eat so much. Plus, they help “grease” the passage if you have constipation. Ensure is also a good source of calories.

    Walking is very important in the healing process and please encourage your dad to do it, even if it just around the house.

    Hugs,
    Kris

    #39416
    lainy
    Participant

    Hello Pam and welcome to our family. I am not sure what to say here as it sounds like so much is missing. What was his actual diagnosis? Why did they not put a stent in? Like Andie, I am also interested in where he is being treated. If he has other health issues that make it hard to treat him, why did they take him to surgery at all? I was under the impression that chemo will not be given if jaundiced, not sure, but have never heard of it before. Can you fill us in a little more? I know you are very upset right now but know that you have come to the right place. I am sure you will be getting lots of posts today. Please keep us posted.

    #39415
    andie
    Participant

    Hi Pam,

    My Dad was diagnosed in April and is awaiting Chemo. I’m not sure where you are from but we are in the UK and they won’t do Chemo if the Bilirubin is above 50. My Dad had a stent in April and unfortunatley it decided to block just as he was about to start his first cycle of chemo. The previous week it had been 45 and then it rose to 75. He is now waiting for an emergency slot to become available to have the stent unblocked.

    One thing I’ve learnt is this CC is a rollercoaster and you really have to take it one day at a time, which is really hard for someone like me who likes to plan everything!

    Have you asked the doctor to prescribe Ensure drinks? They do fruit flavours or milkshake style ones. This helped my Dad to gain the pounds he dropped whilst in hospital due to being nil by mouth for various cancelled procedures. Luckily Dad never lost his appetite and still continues to eat well but these helped give him the kickstart to put on weight.

    Wishing you and your family all the best

    #3713
    pam
    Participant

    My dad was diagnosed with cc in May. He attempted a resection in June that was not successful due to involvement of the pancreas, his age, and other health issues. He was out of surgery in an hour and half. He spent a week recovering from surgery and then spent another week in the hospital back home with a blood infection. There was also a concern that his temporary stent was not draining properly. He is very jaundice and his liver levels are mostly going up.
    He left the hospital without a stent replacement at this time. We have an appointment with an oncologist on Thursday. We hope a chemo treatment will help with bile issues. I am unsure they we proceed with treatment if his levels are too high. He is at home now and not having great days. He does not have much energy and appetite. He has waves of nausea and a nagging headache. He feels full eating the smallest amount of food. He is back to bed several times a day. He uses a walker to get around the house and is still pretty strong. He is using morphine pills to control pain mostly at night. He stared taking an anti nausea medication today. His system seems very delicate and we have to be careful adding new meds. My sister and I are doing twenty four hour shifts. We have home health started this week even though the doctor tells us he qualifies for hospice. Is there anything we are missing? I feel like we are waiting for appointments and he is really sick.

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