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Surgery for Bowel Cancer - what might they remove?

(5 Posts)
Unexpected Mon 08-Sep-14 13:38:46

MIL was (eventually, after various false starts) diagnosed with bowel cancer this sumer. She is currently having chemo and has been told she will have an operation once she has finished the first 6 sessions - subject to another scan and "evaluation of the options". I'm not sure if she realised that surgery might not be an option, from what we have seen and been told the cancer looks widespread and none of us have really thought what this surgery might involve.

I have just read a reference to bowel cancer surgery on another thread where the person ended up with a colostomy bag and it got me thinking. Is that what's involved??? MIL will be horrified, if so. Or are there a variety of operations?

LIZS Mon 08-Sep-14 16:16:12

Yes there are options . dm has had 2 ops for BC, first they removed the affected section and rejoined the ends, she declined Chemo then a year later they removed more, she had a bag fitted and Chemo/Radio. Fortunately it hadn't spread either time. So far so good. She was very anti having a stoma but seems to be coping well although it can be a pita. 12 month review due soon.

ShanghaiDiva Mon 08-Sep-14 16:21:59

Sometimes the bag is only temporary, depends on the location of the tumour(s). My dad coped well with a stoma for 5 years. Sadly the cancer returned and was inoperable.

Unexpected Mon 08-Sep-14 16:32:03

Thank you both. I'll mention it to DH so the idea won't come as a complete shock to him if that is what happens. No need to say anything to MIL, she has enough to cope with just getting through the chemo, time enough for her to know when/if they decide to operate. As I said, we have seen pics of the cancer and it seems to be up as far as her diaphragm, behind(or in?) her ovary - other one removed for other reasons years ago - spots on her intestines, liver and kidneys so I think it's fairly advanced. Fingers crossed though.

I am sorry to hear about your father ShanghaiDiva.

gobbin Thu 27-Nov-14 10:24:47

The concept of a bag is much worse than the reality, really it is. I know everyone thinks 'nooo!' but it's fine. They are actually much easier than the faff of going to the toilet if truth be told.

She will have lots of support from specialist stoma nurses in the early days and they will be at the end of a phone when needed after that.

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