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they've found malignant cells but can't tell us anymore!!

(25 Posts)
littlebroccoli Thu 01-May-14 14:10:07

DP has been having severe stomach pains for a few weeks, coupled with enlarged lymph glands in his abdomen. Sent for biopsy last week, it has come back but all they can say is that it is showing malignant cells, but they don't think its Lymphoma. We have to wait until they have done more tests on the biopsy. What a wait.....if malignant cells have been found does this definitely indicate cancer. He is 38, healthy and fit.

The pain is constant but is worse when he eats certain foods, eg onions, spicy food. Which made us think it was Crohnes but the doctor is saying today that malignant cells have been found in the lymph node biopsy has thrown us completely.

Have to wait another 5 days without knowing exactly what this thing is. Can anyone shed any light?

Elibean Thu 01-May-14 15:56:19

I'm so sorry, it must be the most horrendous wait indeed.

I would assume 'malignant cells' means some sort of cancer, but they clearly don't know what sort - other than it probably not being lymphoma.

Hope someone else can come along and offer more insight, or at least a paw to hold if you want one. You must both be in total shock sad

LIZS Thu 01-May-14 15:59:17

Presumably they don't know the origin of the malignancy , or its extent yet . Very stressful for you both though.

myitchybeaver Thu 01-May-14 16:00:18

Yes, I would say it's definitely some type of cancer but obviously not lymphoma. What a horrible time for you both. There is no point saying try not to worry or try to take your mind off it, is there? I hope the time goes quickly and you get answers soon.

littlebroccoli Thu 01-May-14 18:10:18

Thank you....I'm very shocked but am refusing to believe its cancer till they put a proper diagnosis on it......call it denial, I guess. hmm can you get malignant cells without cancer? the dr was just saying it so matter of factly......not impressed at all with the delivery of information. ....we have more questions than answers at the moment. so frustrating!

myitchybeaver Fri 02-May-14 06:35:40

A malignant cell by definition is a cancer cell. You are right the delivery does not sound good. Good luck, there is every reason to be positive, cancer is not a death sentence x

Elibean Wed 07-May-14 09:38:12

How are you doing, OP? Thinking of you both x

littlebroccoli Wed 07-May-14 19:47:09

oh thank you elibean. that is so kind of you. well they have found abnormality either on the stomach or pancreas. ....today we met with the oncologist who told us it was incurable cancer ....what does that mean? she couldn't give us any specifics because they don't know where the primary source is but should know more when tests are back. we are completely devastated. ...feels like a nightmare and we just want to wake up now. his chemo will start a week after next. oncologist seems to be acting and saying stuff like he's not got long left.....not that helpful when we are trying to stay positive. Do they normally under promise to manage expectations? we are determined to fight this. could really do with some positive stories everyone.....please throw us a bone!!!

BaldricksTurnip Wed 07-May-14 19:53:05

God that's so awful what a terrible shock for you both. Nothing helpful to say just wanted to send some love and light your way xxx

Kundry Wed 07-May-14 20:14:52

I'm so sorry for your news.

I know you want positive stories but in my experience (doctor in very relevant specialty) oncologists tend to over rather than under promise. It is better that they are honest with you from the start, even though your hearts are breaking.

It sounds as if they think it is either stomach or pancreas cancer, both of which are very hard to treat and often incurable at the time of diagnosis. They may get more detail about the type of cancer by further analysis of the sample which can take a long time. However they may simply be unable to tell when the cancer has originated from and will treat it as 'cancer of unknown origin'.

Have you met a specialist nurse to help support you and explain things? Also has anyone addressed DH's pain?

I'm very happy for you to PM me if you want to discuss things further.

Elibean Fri 09-May-14 10:33:52

LittleB, I'm so sorry - what a total nightmare for you both. I think having support straight away from Macmillan or a specialist nurse would be a priority, for me, in that situation. Not knowing details is so hard, and must make it feel even more 'unreal' than shock is doing already.

At this point, and until you have more information to process, maybe just focus on gathering all your resources - practical help, emotional support. Once chemo starts you will at least have some sort of routine, and action to take, which might help you both feel a tiny bit better.

There was a thread here somewhere for partners of people with cancer - I'm no good at links, but will try and find it for you. It was in the General Health section. You might find it can give you more support as it gets more traffic (as a section) and has people who can relate very much to your situation.

Thinking of you and sending all the good vibes I can muster xx

throckenholt Sat 10-May-14 16:34:05

Such horrible news for you both. Whatever happens it is going to be very tough for a while. Now is a time to call in favours and get a smuch help from those around you that you can.

What I hope would be able to do in similar circumstances would be hope for the best while planning for the worst. So I would want to sort out things like making sure the financial situation is sorted out as best as possible for you and any children. Make sure wills are in place (for both of you if you have children). Consider getting married if you aren't already - doesn't need to be a big thing but would make the legal situation simpler.

Talk to his employer to see what they can do to help. If you have children at school - talk to the schools so they know what is happening and find out what they can do to help.

My mum was treated for stomach cancer - she had 3 weekly chemo and the week after chemo she was wiped out then she had a couple of good weeks before the next round. Check with the doctors what sort of rrgime you can expect - it might help you plan things (even as simple as having food sorted in the freezer for the worse weeks to help take the pressure off you).

Best wishes.

meditrina Sat 10-May-14 16:43:40

Here's another hand to hold.

I cannot recommend Macmillan highly enough. Their nurses can help you make more sense of what you've been told, help you ask the right questions next, and advise and help you through hundreds of things that haven't even occurred to you yet.

All the best thanks

Lovethesea Mon 19-May-14 21:36:39

How is the treatment going? Any more news?

littlebroccoli Tue 20-May-14 17:47:23

Thanks Lovethesea. The tumour is on the stomach, spread to lymphs. Chemo started today, despite the gloomy prognosis we remain positive, knowing age and fitness is on our side, we know we can beat this. The tumour is a rare type that responds particularly well to chemo. We have amended diet radically and doing what we can. You have to be positive and cling to every hope possible. Or else what is the alternative??

SantasLittleMonkeyButler Tue 20-May-14 18:08:06

I am so sorry to hear about your DH's diagnosis OP. Whilst a cancer having spread is never good, you are right to keep positive. Some people do respond better than expected to treatment & way outlive their prognosis. Best of luck xxx

Lovethesea Tue 20-May-14 20:08:28

Glad the treatment has started, at least you know you are doing all you can. Macmillan are good and have a free call number you can call for advice on anything, money, nursing, chemo regime. You or DH.

Hope all the RL support you need is soon around you both.

Elibean Wed 21-May-14 10:18:43

Thinking of you too, and glad treatment has started. Responsive to chemo type tumour is good news, so will be crossing everything for your dh and yes - age and fitness are definitely a major plus!

Wishing you luck with every single day you tackle this xx

Lovethesea Sat 24-May-14 00:11:28

How are things going? Thinking of you both.

littlebroccoli Sun 22-Jun-14 13:24:23

Hi everyone, just wanted to say he's doing great, 2nd round ongoing and minimal side effects. After 1st round bloods showed that tumour markers are down from 228 to 54 so I'm not sure if this is normal but its sounds pretty remarkable to me! Its been a good boost for us. smile

Lovethesea Sun 22-Jun-14 20:52:43

Glad to hear! Hope the treatment gives you both a lot of quality life in the middle of all this.

Haggisfish Sun 22-Jun-14 21:06:01

Everything crossed for you and dh.

littlebroccoli Sun 22-Jun-14 22:25:16

Thank you so much thanks

Elibean Tue 24-Jun-14 11:38:40

I'm so glad treatment is helping - more crossed bits for you, Broccoli and dh x

tanyac Thu 21-Aug-14 21:57:39

That's fantastic news!
My husband was given a poor prognosis but it still alive and kicking in remission 3 years on :-)
Never give up and stay positive x

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