Stage 4 bowel cancer

Just been diagnosed with advanced stage 4 bowel cancer, it has spread to my lymph nodes, bloodstream and liver. I'm 54, and prior to an op to remove the tumour that perforated my colon on 31st of March, I was fit and healthy with no symptoms. 

I'm in a bit of shock over my diagnosis, and have told I will be offered palliative chemotherapy next month.. Any advice or positive experiences would be very welcome. 

Thank you. 

  • Hi 

    So sorry to hear that .  It’s very early days of a difficult diagnosis. If you click on my user name you can read how my mum’s team managed her spread .

    They are inclined to go straight to chemo . Palliative chemo is not much different to other stages and the label is helpful for health economists plan NHS resources but less helpful for patients . You are a statistic of one because it only really matters how your own body responds to treatment . Therein lies the hope .

    My mum had a significant spread to her liver but segments 1 to 3 remained clear . Chemotherapy did a powerful job and shrank the spread that opened up other options . Location and size come into play in terms of managing the spread in the liver . Some will use only chemo others will then be able to add in other approaches . I will link in a leaflet that gives a good overview of some of the approaches open to oncologist. You will see some people on the forums in their fifth and six year of treatment using chemo and treating it as a chronic condition . Not everyone sadly but there is a subgroup of patients that do well despite a difficult diagnosis. Bowel cancer has more options than a lot of other primary cancers in terms of the liver . 

    My mum did have lots of bumps along the way . Treatment can often be like that but her team were always on hand to help navigate , reassess and make adjustments. 
    My mum was diagnosed back in 2009 ! She is still doing well .
    This is really quite an informative read .

    I will link in later a thread on chemo tips that forum members have pulled together .

    Take care ,


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  • Thank you so much Court for your positive and very encouraging reply. I'm going to read the information you supplied now. So happy for your Mum, and you and your family. Blush