Pain Update

January 19, 2007 from Don | The Whole Story, Ups and DownsComments Off on Pain Update | ««Previous - Next»»


As you know I have been having some sharp pains at the site where my tube enters my body. After calling my Oncologist, Doug Lee about it Monday night he asked to see me first thing Tuesday morning. He wanted to get some cultures to get things stabilized so we would not have to delay chemo on Thursday. Since there was no obvious infection on the surface and my temperature was normal, I had a CT scan to look for infection along the tube. The CT scan results did not show any infection but did show the liver tumor had shrunk. I also had a culture taken from the entry point of the tube and blood cultures.

I met with my Infectious Disease Specialist, Dr Bill Ehni on Wednesday afternoon. Since the cultures were not back we didn’t have the definitive results we would like. He felt that the bacteria was most likely from the colon since this is what we cultured from the previous culture of the liver bag contents. (Stuff draining into the liver from the colon through the scar tissue tunnel that formed between the colon and liver). He gave us two options- IV antibiotics 4X per day or Flagil (again) and Levaquin which he felt combined would have a 95% chance of working without the inconvenience of home IV. That was a pretty easy decision for us.

Thursday morning, prior to chemo, when draining and flushing my liver tube I noticed the saline came out at the entry of the tube (not good) and it was difficult to flush the tube. I met with Dr Doug Lee prior to chemo and he felt we needed to rush an outpatient surgery to replace the tube. We tried to arrange that after chemo but it ended out being this morning.

Chemo went fine and I felt great Thursday night and could already feel the antibiotics reducing the pain at the site of entry of the liver tube. I had a good night’s sleep and this morning I felt even better.

This morning I went to outpatient surgery and to my surprise met with Dr Joseph, the interventional radiologist. He is the radiologist who originally placed my liver tube thinking I had an amoebic abscess. He said the CT scan showed the tube was almost out of the liver and that the liver mass had shrunk significantly (which may have contributed the tube movement). We decided to replace the existing tube with a slightly larger tube to improve drainage. Remember our strategy has changed from removing the liver tube to keeping it since it is helping to drain the liver of stuff coming from the colon. As we now know, sometimes the liver drains dead cancer cells into the colon through the scar tissue tunnel between liver and colon. Sometimes the colon drains stuff into the liver, which in turn comes out my liver tube.

So all is well and now I have a break until my next chemo in 3 weeks. We will have another CT scan right before the next chemo to compare the tumor size from December 26th. If you are keeping track this will be the 4th chemo and the beginning of the 10th week of chemotherapy.

I realize that this may be information overload so please let Skip know if you would like to be removed from the e-mail distribution.

Thank you for sharing this journey with us and for your ongoing prayers. It is a great encouragement to all of us.

God is Good- all the time- God is Good!


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