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Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by ShariM on Jun 30, 2020 6:34 pm

My name is Shari  and just turned 58 and I have been diagnosed with Rectal Cancer. My journey started a few weeks ago when I noticed bleeding and mucus. I knew something was not right so called my Dr. Right away. She told me to come in and see her the next day. I did and she was concerned and arranged a colonscopy the next day. Once he had finished the Dr  said straight out you have Cancer. Next day I was in for a CT scan. It shows a tumor 8cm x 8.6 x 8.8cm. 4 cm from base of rectum. Good news it has not spread according to CT scan. Yesterday I had an MRI. My blood work was excellent.Now I wait for the call with a treatment plan. I can't explain this but I hav this calmness over me and I have not freaked out. I am surrounded by friends who have or had cancer and my support group is truly amazing! They all have success stories and mine will add to those!!

Shari (In Vancouver)

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Rayline on Jun 30, 2020 10:50 pm

ShariM‍ i am sorry for your diagnosis but really pleased that you are feeling calm and loved. This is a great site to get support and info. In cancer types you will see  colorectal And would be a good place to start. When I first started I read back many pages on the lung cancer pages. I hope you will share your treatment plan when you know. 

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Brighty on Jun 30, 2020 11:31 pm

ShariM‍  welcome to the site.   I'm so glad you have such a great support system and a positive  attitude.   Have you met Whitelilies‍  yet? She was diagnosed  around the same age and will be able to walk you through the process and answer your questions.    Nice to meet you and let us know how you are doing.    
Help is out there. All you have to do is reach out.

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Cynthia Mac on Jul 1, 2020 7:49 am

Hi, ShariM‍ , Welcome. I, too, want to commend you for your calmness, and hope it continues to be with you throughout the weeks to come.

Please come back and keep us posted about your treatment plan. In addition to your “real life” support group, there’s a group of people here who will be here to support you along the way.
“When the root is deep, there is no reason to fear the wind.” - Japanese saying

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Whitelilies on Jul 1, 2020 8:56 am

ShariM‍ Hello
Welcome to this site....and I am sorry for your reason.

I'll have what SHE'S having !!! (the calm..........)
I too commend you, on calmness.  I am happy you have wonderful support! Yeah !

I hope I can support you too.....I will share, in brief, my journey, in the hopes that it helps!
I am 58 now too!!
DX was at 56.....on first colonoscopy, Dr found tumour. Yes CT scans, Yes MRI.....hint: you may get 1 or 2 MRIs.....#1 for your 'zone'.....I heard it is common for MRI #2 to check in Liver area too....I was never fore warned....and got scared; for nothing.  You MAY have another colonoscopy by your Surgeon:  as mine said" I don't like surprises!".  Your Surgeon may wish to pre-see things, to ensure all goes well on your surgery, if you need it, date.  My tumour was 5 cm from the verge.  Quite Down-Town.
I had radiation....and 2 surgeries.  I will "push hold button now".
Keep calm.
Keep strong.
Keep focused.

We/I are all here to listen, guide, help, and support.  And yup: I have been there/done that too!

warmly
Whitelilies

Lillian
in Toronto 

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by ShariM on Jul 1, 2020 10:33 am

Thank you for all the support. I feel the love! My surgeon ordered a half body scan when I did my CT to check my lungs my liver Etc. All came back good including my liver enzymes test. I forgot to mention  I had a colonoscopy a year ago and was told it was all clear. When I had this colonoscopy when he first looked at it he said it was very small. So from the outside you can't tell how large it is until you actually do a CT or MRI. Also my doctor mentioned the reason I can't feel it when I am sitting is the way it is situated.

 It is interesting as I wrote down all the names of my friends who have or had cancer as far as I know and it is 18 people. It's interesting that we are all in Vancouver and all in the Airline Industry!

 I have received a beautiful journal and a planner to write all my appointments down and I've also received a few books that have helped people through their Journey. I could not imagine going through this without this support that I have from my fellow cancer friends.

One day at a time! I am learning to meditate also. I can't go back in time and is what it is so next step is to fight this monster.  I lost my Mom to Cancer as she found out  to late as sheignored d her health. A learning lesson and always listen to your body! Especially women as our gut instincts are so strong!!

So when I hear my treatment plan  I will be sure to share with you. I feel so lucky to be in Vancouver for its Cancer treatment facilities!

Happy Canada Day!!💕

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Whitelilies on Jul 1, 2020 6:46 pm

ShariM‍ Hello (again)
You EXUDE strength and calm.
Glad body "check" shows all clear....I guess it is good to NOT "feel it"/as you sit, etc.

Soon.....it will be "behind" ya !
Please chuckle.....

Lillian

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Cynthia Mac on Jul 2, 2020 6:33 am

ShariM‍ 

Journals - check
meditation - check
listening to your body - check

You are rocking this. Keep up the good work!
“When the root is deep, there is no reason to fear the wind.” - Japanese saying

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by ShariM on Jul 2, 2020 7:13 pm

Just got a call from my Surgeons office and I an appointment to see him on Monday. He will lay it all out so I can begin my treatment. I keep saying if it is so bad he would of had you in the hospital yesterday!! Have no heard from an Oncologist yet.  Maybe after he talks to me? 

 

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by ShariM on Jul 6, 2020 7:41 pm

Just got back from my appointment. It seems I have a very Rare form of Rectal Cancer and they cannot figure it out! A group of 8 specialists are working on it as they need to know in order to figure  treatment. May have to go back for more biopsies as they are running out of tissue. Good news is that it has not spread to organs or lymph nodes! He will call me Wed. To update their findings.  I feel so much better. His last words! WE CAN FIX THIS!!🙂

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Whitelilies on Jul 20, 2020 8:14 pm

ShariM‍ Hello
How are you doing?
I too am "in the same boat"......6cm from the "verge" downtown, Dr found a tumour.  Mine was the 95% common type.....if you are able to share/so we can learn more, did they update you on type/name of this rare cancer? YEAH Dr Can fix it !!
If there is a treatment plan, I am listening.
My plan was.....radiation....surgery......heal......(still healing/heading to the loo)
Shari, I am also 58!   (Feel 68 lol)

Keep strong....share if you can.

Warmly
Lillian
Whitelilies

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by ShariM on Jul 20, 2020 8:25 pm

Hello!

Wow you are my twin! Sorry what city are you in? 

My Cancer is called: "poorly differentiated" high grade neuroendocrine carcinoma of rectum.

This cancer always starts in lung so they are not sure why mine is in rectum.  All test show it is not in lung, brain  or lymph nodes. T2N+. 

Only  seen it once before 7 years ago. The plan is chemo first with amunotherapy. Maybe radiarion and maybe surgery. They are going to see how the chemo does first.  Not sure at this point as they are taking it step by step. I see oncologist on Monday. They have meeting with 8 oncologists putting in their input on my treatment.

So one step at a time.  I have been placed with a very good oncologist who deals with rare cancers. I live in Vancouver BC. 

Will update you when I find out more!

🙂🙏💕

 

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Whitelilies on Jul 21, 2020 10:37 am

ShariM‍ Hello
Thank you for sharing so much.....so personal yet so giving.  We learn from each other and support one another.
Shari....I am in Toronto. (Have visited Kitsilano Beach way back in the day !)
You ARE in good hands......KEEP strong.....KEEP calm......and YES day by day/step by step will work out......now, you have "name" of this rare cancer.  I too have not heard of this.
Mine was the common form: Adenocarcinoma in rectum (spelling ?? lol)  3 cm tumour, approx 6 cm from "verge".
My path was.....Radiation off the bat; Dr (Surgical Oncologist, ONLY for colon-rectal areas) wanted to shrink tumour.......then I had an Ileostomy bag (was told from day 1 )....they said temporary (I did not "hear" this word at all)....then surgery to remove bag.....then heal....still healing......
I too am 58 now......(My sons remind me of my grey hair !!......so I feel 68 !!) (Back to Miss Clairol)
I was diagnosed at 56.  Radiation Oncologist said "Stage 2  Early 3)

Shari.....please post when you can....let us all support you in any way you need.....if I can answer any question you may have, go right ahead (nothing will make me blush).

Regards From Toronto

Lillian

Whitelilies
 

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by ShariM on Jul 28, 2020 10:02 pm

Saw my oncologist yesterday and she was lovely.  Also a great sense of humor which is so important to me during this time.

My cancer is growing at an alarming rate. 2 cm a week and now have multiple tumors all confined to the abdominal area. Chemo starts tomorrow. She could not slot me in at cancer center so she checked me in to hospital.  My chemo is tomorrow morning. She has dealt with this cancer before and with great success. There was no time to put a port in so had a pick line put in as treatment needs to be started asap. Chemo will be tomorrow. Thurs and fri. 18 days off then round 2 and repeat! A scan will them be done and continue until it disappears then Radiation and no surgery if all goes to plan. She does not seem worried in the slightest as this will be a thing of the past!

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Whitelilies on Jul 29, 2020 10:48 am

ShariM‍ Hello
Thank you for sharing your updates, seeing the Oncologist, and more.
TAKE HER CUE......she is calm, and confident; SO ARE YOU!
You are in good hands.
So; chemo started this morning.....when you catch your breath, please post, let us know how you are doing?
Others may have chemo suggestions to offer.......I had radiation, then surgery....I can offer insight, at a later point in time.
You are a strong woman.  You have support.
Sending virtual hugs,

Whitelilies
Lillian

ps I have been to Kitsilano Beach.....lovely there! Granville Island Too!

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Lacey_adminCCS on Jul 29, 2020 10:53 am

ShariM‍ 

Your Oncologist sounds competent and very experienced! Oh and the sense of humour helps. It's nice to feel like you're in good hands. I'm glad your treatment is starting now!

Please know I'm thinking of you today as you start your treatment. Let us know how you feel later if you get a chance. Now is a great time to ask for some chemo tips.

Hugs,
Lacey

 

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by ShariM on Jul 29, 2020 11:29 am

I will reach out for sure. Wil start in a few hours! 

Cheers!

Shari

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Whitelilies on Jul 29, 2020 9:03 pm

ShariM‍ Hello
I was thinking of you today.....and hope things went smoothly, and that you were supported and the nurses were kind.
Rest when needed......look at the mountains for inspiration......breathe in the Coastal air for strength....and tomorrow is a fresh day.
Regards
From Toronto, Lillian

Whitelilies 

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by ShariM on Jul 29, 2020 9:42 pm

Thank you very much. All went well and overall very positive experience. The nurses are amazing and really spent a lot of time explaining everything that I was going through. My treatment was 1 hour 45 minutes so I was done by noon today. Then sent home about an hour later because I was still feeling fine. It's now going on to 7pm here in Vancouver and I still feel pretty good. She's giving me some anti-nausea pills in case I feel sick through the evening and I go back at 9 a.m. tomorrow morning for my second chemo. We talked about side effects and everyone reacts differently with these drugs so who knows if and when I will get these side effects. I'm making sure I'm drinking a ton of water to make sure my kidneys stay clear as a gentleman beside me today was in the hospital for two days because he wasn't drinking enough water and it affected his kidneys. A friend of mine dropped off some cute chemo hats  so not sure at this point how much hair or if all of it I will lose and when it will happen.

She confirmed she feels 3 month treatment should get the result we want with a little radiation. She also said the tumor will be pooped out to be prepared for it as it is large. Who knew!!

One day at a time.

Thank you for checking up on me.

How are you doing??

Shari

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Lacey_adminCCS on Jul 29, 2020 9:53 pm

ShariM

Thank you for the update!! So glad it went well. 

One down.. You got this

Lacey

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by ShariM on Jul 30, 2020 11:00 am

Had a bit of a rough night. Headache, burning face and nausea tool the meds for it and went away pretty quick. Could not sleep either. This morning I feel good again. Guess I should get use to this!

Back this morning for #2.

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Lacey_adminCCS on Jul 30, 2020 11:10 am

ShariM‍ 

Sorry to hear it was a rough night.

Were the meds prescribed to be taken only when you have a symptom or proactively to prevent any symptoms? You could check today.

I hope today goes okay.

Lacey

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by ShariM on Jul 30, 2020 11:13 am

Yes as soon as i feel nausea come on I take the anti nausea pill. It helped for sure. Drinking ginger tea which my oncologist recommended!🙂

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Whitelilies on Jul 30, 2020 8:17 pm

ShariM‍ Hello
Good evening from Toronto......thinking of you, and sending you Positive Vibes......keep focused....keep strong.....
Warmly,
Whitelilies

Lillian

Re: Just diagnosed with Rectal Cancer

Posted by Whitelilies on Jul 30, 2020 8:20 pm

ShariM‍ oops just saw that is was a difficult night.....so sorry.....I hope meds can help and the ginger tea.
I used to watch CNN at 3am, THAT sure made me sleepy!
As others have mentioned, tell your medical team when you feel unwell etc....they may "tweak" dosage etc and help you......
Let them know.....
Regards
Lillian

Whitelilies