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Advice about scans


Pete12
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Hi

I have already posted on the general chat forum explaining my story regarding a Whipple procedure carried out on 6th June this year. In hindsight, given the title of this forum, I should probably have posted on here first, although the response to my postings on general chat have been brilliant.


My question is. When should I expect to have a scan to determine the current situation. My next appointment with the Consultant/Team is the 10th December which will be 6 months since my op. Should I ask for a scan at this meeting, or am I "jumping the gun" a wee bit. My main concern is that I was scheduled to have post-operative chemotherapy as a precaution but this has been cancelled indefinitely due to the fact that my wound was "unclipped" whilst in hospital due to a nasty infection, and they decided to leave it to heal naturally, unfortunately it is still taking it's time to heal and still requires daily dressing. The Oncologist told me that the "cut-off" time for precautionary post-operative chemo is 12 weeks, and any precautionary chemo beyond that time would be pointless.


Would be good to get anyone's advice regarding the scan situation if possible.


Regards

Pete

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Hi Pete

It's been three years since I had my surgery followed by six months of chemo. I think I had my first scan after six months of chemo. From then on my oncologist has tended to go on my bloods (CA19-9 tumour marker as a measure) and on how I'm feeling. I think I've had about three in total since chemo. It's a hard one Pete as radiation from too many scans isn't good for us either but can understand your anxiety. Talk it through with your consultant I'm sure he/she will understand and say if a scan is needed at this stage.


Sue.

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There's probably not a definitive answer to your question Pete, but based on my experience, whilst things are going well I seem to be having scans around 6 monthly intervals, as is the case now with me being on Folfirinox and Tumour Marker dropping pretty rapidly. However, if there is uncertainty or chemo has been suspended, I would expect 3 monthly scans. Your Tumour Marker trend would be of interest, but as 6 months have passed since your operation, I would suggest a scan is definitely due.


Hope this helps!


Steve

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Thank you Sue and Steve for your prompt and useful replies.


I had a CA19-9 blood test 3 weeks ago and the result was 20 which I understand is within "normal" parameters, but I know that this test isn't a definitive indication. I also understand that things can change quite rapidly regarding this horrible disease, and obviously it would be useful to know if there are any changes, so I will take Steve's advice and request a scan when I have my appointment in December.


Once again Guys, thank you for your advice. As they say, there is no substitute for experience.


Kind Regards

Pete

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  • 4 weeks later...

A quick follow-up to my previous post. I have been experiencing some back pain for the past couple of weeks. The pain is dull and is between my shoulder blades and sometimes radiates to my kidney area, it tends to be worse later in the day. I also have developed an occasional pain on my right side, under the lower rib which extends into my right shoulder. It is now 6 months since my Whipple and I'm now only taking Paracetamol for minimal pain. I saw my G.P. yesterday and I asked about something a little stronger for the pain, but he said that as I have an appointment to see the Consultant next week (10th Dec)I should wait to see what they say. He did recommend that I ask for a scan to determine what is going on, but he suggests that it's probably all part of the internal healing process. He seemed more determined to put me on some form of anti-depressant and has prescribed Citalopram. I don't feel that I'm depressed but he said that given my circumstance it would help (confused).

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