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Thread: Spouse Recently Diagnosed Stage 3 Rectal

  1. #1
    Newbie New User
    Join Date
    May 2019

    Spouse Recently Diagnosed Stage 3 Rectal


    My husband (50yrs old) was recently diagnosed with a Stage 3 rectal tumor. MRI confirmed T3bN2. (One node appears malignant and 3 others are suspicious. I know the T has something to do with how Invasive the tumor is into the tissue/muscle, but thatís about it.)

    He did have symptoms of bleeding and pressure (both of which have been worse since Jan of this year.) His initial thought was hemorrhoids, which of course it wasnít. His health is ok...high blood pressure and cholesterol. Crummy eating habits, and he is also a heavy drinker. (He was hospitalized 3 years ago for pancreatitis, which was a result of alcohol.) He is still drinking beer. (Prior to his hospitalization it was hard liquor.)

    Last week prior to his MRI, his surgeon stated his thoughts for his plan were: chemo/radiation, LAR surgery with temporary ileostomy, then reversal following bowel healing. He mentioned his location 7cm from anal verge) and type can be curable.

    Does this plan/his opinion seem pretty typical for a 3bN2 tumor still? I am concerned about node involvement. If one node is malignant, doesnít that mean it is already in his lymphatic system? And we need to worry about metastasis to other organs in the future?

    I just realized how long my post is. Many apologies!!! I am just really scared and overwhelmed. We also have two girls ages 13 and 10.5. I am scared for them, as well as my husband.

    Thank you-

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Top User Baz10's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Apologies I missed your post, just saw it now.

    There are a number of our members who have undergone rectal cancer treatment and surgery who no doubt will have better knowledge than myself.
    My two episodes were both higher and obviously the treatment was slightly different to what is proposed for your husband.
    However it would seem that the proposed treatment pathway seems in line with other historical posts.
    If you both have any doubts as to what is proposed then there is no reason not to get a second opinion.
    Most surgeons welcome another peers opinion.
    Good luck
    Diagnosed stage 3 March 011
    Radical resection April 011
    Restaged 2b April 011.
    12/09 Colonoscopy clear but picked up hospital infection.
    Aorta & femoral arteries occluded.
    Clot buster drugs put me in ICU with internal bleeding. 9 blood units later they got it under control.
    Aortobifemoral surgery 5th May. yughh.
    PET scan indicates clear
    DEXA bone scan clear
    13/5 CT showed "unknown" but no concern from docs.
    Inguinal lymph nodes and severe groin pain.
    Ultrasound and MRI show no nasties. Pheww
    Groin pain and enlarged lymph nodes still there.
    October -still the same pains but under semi control.
    Additional chest CT scan ordered for 11th November prior to surgery.
    Sinus surgery done and dusted.
    July 2014 PSA at 5.10. 2months of antibiotics in case of UTI, jan 2015 PSA at 7.20, 23/08 now 8.2, current 8.1
    Prostate Cancer confirmed Gleason 3+Marginal 4.
    Active surveillance continues.
    PET CT Aug 2017 indicated lung nodule changes
    CT Guided biopsy 7/09
    November 1 Vats Wedge section pathology Glomulated previous infection
    no Cancer.

    Not all's rosy in the garden, but see following.
    Stop grumbling Baz, your still alive and kicking so far.
    Age and illness doesn't define who we are, but more what we are able to do.
    Do what I love doing, when I can until I can't.
    and dodging bullets in the meanwhile, too many bullets at moment.

  3. #3
    Moderator Top User Doug K's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014

    I too, missed your post. I thought there would be others posting here when I first read it. My diagnosis was stage 2, into the wall of the rectum, not through, and post surgery, no lymph nodes were cancerous. Treatment was chemo/radiation, LAR (Low Anterior Resection). I was marked for an ileostomy and a colostomy, not being sure I could be resectioned, until after the surgery. I was fortunate, that the resection was successful. Post surgery, I had six chemo infusions over twelve weeks. I just passed the five year post treatment mark with No Evidence of Disease (NED).

    Hang in there. The alcohol isn't helpful at this point, especially regarding potential metastasis. I would suggest getting himself in as good a physical condition prior to treatment. This requires lots of him being the best he can be. You need to be at the top of your game as well. This process can be very difficult on caregivers.

    As Barry has stated, if you aren't feeling confident in your treatment team, you can seek a second opinion. Good luck and please keep posting to inform as to progress.

    August 2004 Colonoscopy Clear
    June-July 2013 Abdominal Discomfort Upper Abdomen X-ray, UltraSound, CTScan all clear
    8.23.13 Diagnosed 5cm tumor on rectum wall: adenocarcinoma @age 66
    Aug-Sept2013 Met with Surgeon,Hematologist and Radiation oncologist
    Oct.-Nov.: Xeloda concurrent with radiation: 25 doses
    November CTScan, MRI and surgeon scoped: Tumor gone, scar tissue
    1.6.14 Surgery LAR: Rectum removed, sphincter remains: Pathology: no lymph node,
    Tumor downgraded from Possible T3 to T2
    Feb. - April Chemo:5 FU and Oxilaplatin:6 infusions over 14 weeks
    9.4.14 ColonoscopyClear,CT Clear
    Dec.14 Follow up BlWk +,CEA .9
    Mar.15Follow up BlWk +,CEA .6
    June.15 Follow up BlWk +,CEA .7
    Sept2015Followup BlWk + CEA .7 CTScanClear NED
    Sept2016Followup BlWk + CEA .7 CTScanClear NED
    Sept-Oct2017Followup All clear NED
    Sept-Oct2018CTScan+Clear Bldwk+
    Continue ColoRectal Support Group monthly


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