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Thread: Pancreatic cancer possible at age 29?

  1. #1
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    Question Pancreatic cancer possible at age 29?

    Hi. I appreciate any input/support you can provide.

    I'm a 29-year-old mother of two. I actually just had my second child a month ago. I'll admit I'm a worrier and have anxiety related to health, but I can't help but notice strange symptoms lately.

    I was diagnosed with cholestasis of pregnancy at 36 weeks. Due to the risks, my daughter was delivered at 37 weeks. I still have the occasional, slight itchiness (concern #1). I also notice stool changes (once in awhile, they float, or leave steaks in the toilet - too much fat possibly?). That's concern #2. I eat a healthy diet. More notably, for the last two weeks, I've had LOTS of back pain. It seems to mostly be in my middle back around my bra line. It almost feels like it's in my spine. However, the back pain sometimes radiates to my neck, shoulders, and low back. The pain is pretty constant and mild to moderate in severity (main concern #3). I also have some soreness around my breast bone. I've had costochondritis in the past - not sure if this is the same.

    I did have a c-section and spinal block, but my ob-gyn says my pain doesn't seem spinal or postpartum related. I suppose I do bend in weird ways at times to care for my two children. But I've never had back pain like this in my life and it came on all of a sudden.

    I am literally making myself sick with worry and cannot stay off Dr. Google. I keep imagining getting this horrible diagnosis and not living to see my kids grow up.

  2. #2
    Administrator Top User lisa1962's Avatar
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    Hello and sorry to hear of your worries and coming on while tending to a newborn must be difficult.

    Since you admit to having health related anxiety, your mistake was to Google symtoms. Google can and will convince just about anyone they have a deadly illness so you must stop Googling.

    Just having a major surgery recently , a C-Section, your body has barely begun to heal. Further bending and picking up a bewborn can be challenging . Your other back muscles are probably bearing the brunt of the effort.

    Pancreatic cancer is rare in someone so young. Follow up with your physician and express your concerns both physical pain and anxiety. You are under a lot of stress in dealing with two young ones .

    In short, stop Googling and make an appointment with your physician.

    Good luck to you.

    Lisa

  3. #3
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    Pancreatic cancer is certainly "possible" at age 29, but its incredibly unlikely. the average age of pancreatic cancer patients is 70.

    a lot more likely you are just getting past a pregnancy and major surgery, or perhaps gall stones , gird, or other ailment
    Nov 2013 PSA 4.2 Biopsy Jan 2014- 1 core positive, 20% Gleason 6, doctor highly reco'ed robotic RP - 2nd opinion at UPMC April 2014, put on active surveillance. 2nd biopsy Feb 2015, results negative. PSA test Feb 2016, 3.5. 3rd Biopsy Feb 2016. 3 positive cores less than 5%, Gleason 6. Octotype DX done April 2016, GPS Score of 24--rated "Low risk". PSA test 8/2016, 3.2.

  4. #4
    Moderator Top User BobInBonita's Avatar
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    Momoftwo,

    Lisa is right on with her advice. Pancreatic cancer is virtually unheard of in someone so young - unless there is a familial, genetic cauise, like BRCA.

    That said, you do have symptoms and you need help beyond what Google can provide. Talk openly and frankly with your Dr, including your health anxiety. There may be a physical cause or there may just be worry. Your Dr should be able to sort out the two.

    Best wishes to you and your babes,

    Bob
    7/12 DX stage 3 pan can (adenocarcinoma) @ 65 - borderline resectable
    8/12 - 10/12 Chemo (GTX) & Stereotactic Radiation
    12/12 Whipple - R0 margins, 2/29 nodes pos.
    1/13 - 5/16 Vaccine clinical trial - randomized to control group - vaccine showed no benefit
    2/13 - 8/13 Gemzar for 6 months
    Quarterly scans - no evidence of disease to 10/14 - spot on lung being watched - possible infection 2 months on antibiotics
    3/15 - spot larger - probable met - surgery planned
    4/15 - PET prior to surg - recurrence & lung mets - Surgery cancelled - EUS w/ FNA showed adenocarcinoma - Stage 4
    5/15 - 9/15 Folfirinox @ reduced dosage - Stopped treatment after 11 infusions due to neuropathy
    10/15 - 8/16 maintenance 5-fu every other week
    8/16 - stable disease on both CT and PET/CT - chemo holiday while other treatments explored
    9/16 - lung biopsy confirms pan can met,
    10/16 -NanoKnife to pancreatic bed -PET after Nano showed new met in hilar lymph nodes - SBRT to both lung & lymph
    4/17 - PET/CT showed significant disease progression, multiple lung mets, pancreatic bed tumor has grown
    5/17 - Started hospice care - striving for acceptance

    Stay busy and live life to the best of your ability.

  5. #5
    Super Moderator Top User po18guy's Avatar
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    Ob/Gyn does not think this is post-partum depression? Instead of driving yourself crazy, get another Ob/Gyn. At least for some routine P-P Depression testing. As a side note, young mothers post here frequently, but I cannot recall even one which had a cancer.
    07/08 Age 56 DX 1) Peripheral T-Cell Lymphoma-Not Otherwise Specified. Stage IV-B, >50 ("innumerable") tumors, bone marrow involvement.
    08/08-12/08 Four cycles CHOEP14 + four cycles GND (Cyclofosfamide, Doxorubicin, Vincristine, Etoposide, Prednisone & Gemcitabine, Navelbine, Doxil)
    02/09 2) Relapse.
    03/09-06/13 Clinical trial of Romidepsin > long-term study. NED for 64 twenty-eight day cycles, dose tapered.
    07/13 3) Relapse, 4) Suspected Mutation.
    08/13-02/14 Romidepsin increased, stopped for lack of response. Watch & Wait.
    09/14 Relapse/Progression. Visible cervical nodes appear within 4 days of being checked clear.
    10/06/14 One cycle Belinostat. Discontinued to enter second clinical trial.
    10/25/14 Clinical trial of Alisertib/Failed - Progression.
    01/12/15 Belinostat resumed/Failed - Progression. 02/23/15
    02/24/15 Pralatrexate/Failed - Progression. 04/17/15
    04/15 Genomic profiling reveals mutation into PTCL-NOS + AngioImmunoblastic T-Cell Lymphoma. Stage IV-B a second time. Two dozen tumors + small intestine (Ileum) involvement.
    04/22/15 TREC (Bendamustine, Etoposide, Carboplatin). Full response in two cycles. PET/CT both clear. Third cycle followed.
    06/15-07/15 Transplant preparation (X-rays, spinal taps, BMB, blood test, MUGA scan, lung function, CMV screening, C-Diff testing etc. etc. etc.) Intrathecal Methotrexate during spinal tap.
    BMB reveals 5) 26% blast cells of 20q Deletion Myelodysplastic Syndrome MDS), a bone marrow cancer.
    07/11-12/15 Cyclofosfamide + Fludarabine conditioning regimen.
    07/16/15 Total Body Irradiation.
    07/17/15 Moderate intensity Haploidentical Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplant receiving my son's peripheral blood stem cells.
    07/21-22/15 Triple dose Cyclofosfamide + Mesna, followed by immunosuppressants Tacrolimus and Mycophenolate Mofetil.
    07/23-08/03/15 Marrow producing zero blood cells. Fever. Hospitalized two weeks.
    08/04/15 Engraftment occurs, and blood cells are measureable - released from hospital.
    08/13/15 Day 26 - Marrow is 100% donor cells. Platelets climbing steadily, red cells follow.
    09/21/15 Acute skin Graft versus Host Disease arrives.
    DEXA scan reveals Osteoporosis.
    09/26/-11/03/15 Prednisone to control skin GvHD.
    11/2015 Acute GvHD re-classified to Chronic Graft versus Host Disease.
    05/2016 Tacrolimus stopped. Prednisone from 30-90mg daily tried. Sirolimus begun.
    09/16/16 Three skin punch biopsies.
    11/04/16 GvHD clinical trial of Ofatumumab (Arzerra) + Prednisone + Methylprednisolone begun.
    12/16 Type II Diabetes, Hypertension - both treatment-related.
    05/17 Extracorporeal Photopheresis (ECP) begun in attempt to control chronic Graft-versus-Host-Disease (cGvHD.
    06/17 Trying various antibiotics in a search for tolerable prophylaxis.
    08/17 Bone marrow biopsy reveals the presence of 2% cells with 20q Deletion Myelodysplastic Syndrome, considered to be Minimum Residual Disease. Active surveillance is the course of choice.
    To date: 18 chemotherapeutic drugs in 9 regimens (4 of them at least twice), 5 salvage regimens, 3 clinical trials, 4 post-transplant immuno-suppressant drugs, the equivalent of 1,000 years of background radiation from scanning from 45+ CT series scans and about 24 PET scans. Two lymphoid malignancies plus a myeloid malignancy lend a certain symmetry to the journey.

    Believing in the redemptive value of suffering makes all the difference.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by po18guy View Post
    As a side note, young mothers post here frequently, but I cannot recall even one which had a cancer.

    In recent months, there has been a news story about a young mother being considered for Catholic sainthood, ill with cancer during her pregnancy she elected to give birth.

    Stories like this can sometimes get into people's minds, where they forget the reason why the story was so notable to make the news was that the circumstance was so rare and the story so unusual.
    Nov 2013 PSA 4.2 Biopsy Jan 2014- 1 core positive, 20% Gleason 6, doctor highly reco'ed robotic RP - 2nd opinion at UPMC April 2014, put on active surveillance. 2nd biopsy Feb 2015, results negative. PSA test Feb 2016, 3.5. 3rd Biopsy Feb 2016. 3 positive cores less than 5%, Gleason 6. Octotype DX done April 2016, GPS Score of 24--rated "Low risk". PSA test 8/2016, 3.2.

  7. #7
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    Thank you all for the responses. They do (somewhat) ease my mind a bit. I'm driving myself mad with my online research, so I agree that I need to stop. My family is coming from out of state today to meet their new grandchild, so I'm hoping visitors will keep my mind off things and away from the computer. I have a chiropractor eval tomorrow. I'm hoping if it's stress/strain related from childbirth and bending, it will help. I also have an appt. with my general doctor this week. Hopefully I will get some answers or at least have a direction to look in.

    My ob/gyn did not mention PPD. I don't feel depressed (I had some PPD/PPA with my first child, so I know what that can be like), but I'm sure I could be experiencing some postpartum anxiety without even realizing it. Recovering and dealing with a toddler and newborn is no easy task. Someone mentioned the BRCA gene. I'm not sure about that. I do have one paternal aunt who has had ovarian and breast cancer.

    I'm trying to remind myself that I have IBS so my stools are not always normal, that my back pain is likely due to other causes, and that pancreatic cancer is very rare in someone my age. As you all said, I must stay away from Google. I'm literally addicted to researching my symptoms at times and I know that's not healthy in any way.

    Thank you to everyone who took the time to respond and helped me put things in perspective. I hope I feel better soon since all of my help with the kids will be gone next week.

  8. #8
    Super Moderator Top User po18guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by momoftwo17 View Post
    I have a chiropractor eval tomorrow. I'm hoping if it's stress/strain related from childbirth and bending, it will help.
    Chasing after and picking up your toddler can easily cause back pain exactly where you describe. Pain causes stress, which can affect your colon.
    Quote Originally Posted by momoftwo17 View Post
    I also have an appt. with my general doctor this week. Hopefully I will get some answers or at least have a direction to look in.
    A real doctor! Far better than the interwebz!
    Quote Originally Posted by momoftwo17 View Post
    My ob/gyn did not mention PPD. I don't feel depressed (I had some PPD/PPA with my first child, so I know what that can be like), but I'm sure I could be experiencing some postpartum anxiety
    As tragic as severe PPD can be, it is surprising that your Ob/Gyn did not mention it. It is unpredictable and all mothers and fathers should be made aware of it.
    Quote Originally Posted by momoftwo17 View Post
    Someone mentioned the BRCA gene. I'm not sure about that. I do have one paternal aunt who has had ovarian and breast cancer.
    BRCA is associated with some cancers - it is not diagnostic or absolutely predictive of cancer. Most BRCA people do not get cancer.
    Quote Originally Posted by momoftwo17 View Post
    I'm trying to remind myself that I have IBS so my stools are not always normal, that my back pain is likely due to other causes, and that pancreatic cancer is very rare in someone my age.
    See how wrong anxiety can lead you? These are perfectly reasonable explanations for your symptoms.
    Quote Originally Posted by momoftwo17 View Post
    As you all said, I must stay away from Google. I'm literally addicted to researching my symptoms at times and I know that's not healthy in any way.
    A single symptom may indicate as many as 450 different illnesses out of 68,000 recognized by the world Health Organization. Two symptoms, double that number, and so on. Consider: does it have to be cancer?

    Your stress has more than doubled with the new arrival (congratulations!) and what you have described is easily attributed to that. Combine all of this with the mother's "worry gene" and you begin the negative path - guaranteed to be negative - of self diagnosis. Anxiety is a condition which causes irrational fears. As long as you are aware of this, you can strive to control it. Medication for anxiety would need to be carefully discussed with doctor, due to your responsibilities as a mother, and if you are breastfeeding.

    Google is a mortician - not a doctor! How often do you stop by funeral homes just to have a look around?

    Then don't!
    07/08 Age 56 DX 1) Peripheral T-Cell Lymphoma-Not Otherwise Specified. Stage IV-B, >50 ("innumerable") tumors, bone marrow involvement.
    08/08-12/08 Four cycles CHOEP14 + four cycles GND (Cyclofosfamide, Doxorubicin, Vincristine, Etoposide, Prednisone & Gemcitabine, Navelbine, Doxil)
    02/09 2) Relapse.
    03/09-06/13 Clinical trial of Romidepsin > long-term study. NED for 64 twenty-eight day cycles, dose tapered.
    07/13 3) Relapse, 4) Suspected Mutation.
    08/13-02/14 Romidepsin increased, stopped for lack of response. Watch & Wait.
    09/14 Relapse/Progression. Visible cervical nodes appear within 4 days of being checked clear.
    10/06/14 One cycle Belinostat. Discontinued to enter second clinical trial.
    10/25/14 Clinical trial of Alisertib/Failed - Progression.
    01/12/15 Belinostat resumed/Failed - Progression. 02/23/15
    02/24/15 Pralatrexate/Failed - Progression. 04/17/15
    04/15 Genomic profiling reveals mutation into PTCL-NOS + AngioImmunoblastic T-Cell Lymphoma. Stage IV-B a second time. Two dozen tumors + small intestine (Ileum) involvement.
    04/22/15 TREC (Bendamustine, Etoposide, Carboplatin). Full response in two cycles. PET/CT both clear. Third cycle followed.
    06/15-07/15 Transplant preparation (X-rays, spinal taps, BMB, blood test, MUGA scan, lung function, CMV screening, C-Diff testing etc. etc. etc.) Intrathecal Methotrexate during spinal tap.
    BMB reveals 5) 26% blast cells of 20q Deletion Myelodysplastic Syndrome MDS), a bone marrow cancer.
    07/11-12/15 Cyclofosfamide + Fludarabine conditioning regimen.
    07/16/15 Total Body Irradiation.
    07/17/15 Moderate intensity Haploidentical Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplant receiving my son's peripheral blood stem cells.
    07/21-22/15 Triple dose Cyclofosfamide + Mesna, followed by immunosuppressants Tacrolimus and Mycophenolate Mofetil.
    07/23-08/03/15 Marrow producing zero blood cells. Fever. Hospitalized two weeks.
    08/04/15 Engraftment occurs, and blood cells are measureable - released from hospital.
    08/13/15 Day 26 - Marrow is 100% donor cells. Platelets climbing steadily, red cells follow.
    09/21/15 Acute skin Graft versus Host Disease arrives.
    DEXA scan reveals Osteoporosis.
    09/26/-11/03/15 Prednisone to control skin GvHD.
    11/2015 Acute GvHD re-classified to Chronic Graft versus Host Disease.
    05/2016 Tacrolimus stopped. Prednisone from 30-90mg daily tried. Sirolimus begun.
    09/16/16 Three skin punch biopsies.
    11/04/16 GvHD clinical trial of Ofatumumab (Arzerra) + Prednisone + Methylprednisolone begun.
    12/16 Type II Diabetes, Hypertension - both treatment-related.
    05/17 Extracorporeal Photopheresis (ECP) begun in attempt to control chronic Graft-versus-Host-Disease (cGvHD.
    06/17 Trying various antibiotics in a search for tolerable prophylaxis.
    08/17 Bone marrow biopsy reveals the presence of 2% cells with 20q Deletion Myelodysplastic Syndrome, considered to be Minimum Residual Disease. Active surveillance is the course of choice.
    To date: 18 chemotherapeutic drugs in 9 regimens (4 of them at least twice), 5 salvage regimens, 3 clinical trials, 4 post-transplant immuno-suppressant drugs, the equivalent of 1,000 years of background radiation from scanning from 45+ CT series scans and about 24 PET scans. Two lymphoid malignancies plus a myeloid malignancy lend a certain symmetry to the journey.

    Believing in the redemptive value of suffering makes all the difference.

 

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