Rectal Cancer Dx

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I made it to 81 years old yay! My health is okay arthritis, you know things slow down and so on.

Had some bleeding, no pain, poop every day. After a few months went to my PCP and she sent me to a colon rectal specialist. Discussed my bleeding so now do the simple stuff. First prescription still bleeding (not a lot just spotty now and then). After a month still bleeding another prescription the third month a colonoscopy.

Results Stage 3 rectal cancer. Ct MRI, blood test then on to the oncologist. I was overwhelmed. So now chemo radiation for 6 weeks. Unable to have surgery because of the location of the tumor. I will start 7/10/24 to 8/19/24 . The chemo pill Xeloda 2 pills 2 times a day everyday you have radiation. Omg all the side effects. Because I am older that is a big issue. 
I have faith and will give this journey my best Shot.

  • Hi  and a warm welcome to the board and congratulations on reaching 81! I suspect you’re not in UK (USA maybe?) but hopefully we can give you some information that’s relevant regardless of where you are in the world!

    Heres a link to a post that we started about radiotherapy. To be honest the xelox or capecitabine tablets are quite a mild dosage used to enhance the effects of the radiotherapy so I personally found them pretty tolerable. They don’t tend to have the same intensity of side effects as ‘full’ chemo. 

    Radiotherapy care top tips ! 

    Keep your hands and feet well moisturised with Aveeno with Shea butter or udder cream which can be found online. Only use the creams that they give you on the area being treated and mention to the radiographers if you get any soreness.

    Chemoradiotherapy can be really effective at shrinking tumours - mine shrank by 75% - and some people have even been fortunate enough to have a complete response ie. tumour blasted into oblivion.

    Hope the treatment goes well and please keep us posted?

    Take care

    Karen x

    Macmillan Support Line - 0808 808 00 00, 7 days a week between 8am-8pm
  • Hi Kareno 62

    Thanks for all the great information regarding chemo radiation and great link. I live in USA 

    Webster, NY. Lived here all my life have 2 kids 5 grandchildren and one great grandson. Life has been good. Worked until I was 74 billing manager at the University of Rochester. I walk every day try to do my best to eat right. Being Italian sometimes makes it hard.Both my children prepare great meals they live close enough to drop them off mmmmm.
    This diagnosis somehow doesn’t make sense. I have faith that God and all these wonderful doctors and nurses will get me through this journey.

    I hope you are having a great weekend. God bless you for all the help, kindness love and support you add to this site.


    81 Fighter

  • Hi 81 Fighter, What a great name, and I am sure you are going to fight this.  Yes, it does overwhelm you when you are first told, you just cannot seem to take it in.  Perhaps the side effects will not be as bad as what you think, I also had radiotherapy and chemo, and although I felt tired etc., it was not as bad as what I thought, and I am still here to tell the tale.  Like you I have my faith and that gave me the strength to cope, as I am sure it will with you.  All best wishes for the future.

  • Hi Mary Char2046 every morning I say good morning Jesus I am awake, walking, talking take my hand and come with me again today. Your kind words mean so very much to me.

    Can I ask you some questions about your cancer journey?

    I am a twin my sister is 4 minutes older than I am. So I am the baby we are identical. She is with me along with my husband and kids for support. I just want to get started with chemo radiation get it over with. Not sure what will be next. Okay one day at a time just said to myself. I am 5’2 weigh 97 lbs never had surgery had colonoscopy every 10 years last one 2020 always okay. So at this age why now.

    Hope you have a blessed day

  • Hi 81 Fighter, So lovely to hear from you, yes, and like you I thank God every day that he walked with me every step of the way when I was going through the same journey as you.  Sometimes I wondered where He was, like you, but looking back I know He was there for me, and with the love and support of my Church family, my family and friends I got through, and to be honest I was never ever afraid of dying as I trusted in Jesus.  I am like you 5'2 and slim, but that does not mean a thing, it can happen to anyone, and I wish I could tell you why now, at your age it has happened, but I can't, but just trust and believe in the power of prayer.xx