It’s all very new

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My husband has been diagnosed with Stage 4 Gallbladder Cancer. He’s 71 years old.

it’s all happened very quickly; at the end of May he went to A&E due to feeling unwell. He’d had a telephone consultation with his GP who diagnosed a gastric problem and prescribed appropriate medication a week or two before. We thought he’d be given a better diagnosis and sent home………. little did we know. He was admitted with a severe liver infection which turned into sepsis. He was admitted to hospital and given 15 rounds of antibiotics.

While in A&E he had an ultrasound scan and was quickly referred for an MRI scan after which we were given the devastating news that he had Gallbladder Cancer.

Anyway, things have moved quickly. He recovered exceptionally well from his liver infection; he’s seen the consultant and yesterday had his first cycle of chemotherapy- he’ll have 8 cycles which will take us up to Christmas or the new year.

The thing is it feels so unreal. My husband looks really well and you’d never know how ill he is. He gets fatigued and has a cough (the cancer has spread very very slightly to the base of the lungs) he is not in any discomfort or pain; so I’m finding it difficult to fully understand the seriousness of the situation and the prognosis (6 to 12 months, although consultant did say that was only an average). Is this normal.

  • Hi and welcome to the Online Community. I'm sorry to read about your husband's diagnosis. When you get a diagnosis of cancer out of the blue it knocks you for 6. If you have any more questions about the prognosis, contact your husband's CNS for further information.

    I've a different type of cancer and my symptoms were so slight I wasn't going to bother the Doctor, good job I listened to my friend who nagged me.

    You've joined the right group to connect with other's in the same situation so hopefully someone will be along to chat soon. In the meantime, read through some of the older posts, just click on reply to join in a thread/discussion.

    It’s always helpful to others if you write a little something (or a lot) about yourself and your husband's journey to date. You can enter it into your profile (click on your username and select “Profile”) It’s helpful to other members with a similar diagnosis who can then hopefully answer your questions. It also means that you don't have to keep writing the same thing over and over. You can amend or update it at any time. 

    To find more information covering diagnosis and treatments there are pages covering most types of cancers which can be found on our Online Information and Support Section

    The Macmillan Support Services also offer lots of information, support, financial guidance or just someone to listen. It’s free to call 0808 808 0000. Most services are available 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week. Have a look by Clicking here to see what is available and we also have our Ask an Expert section, but do allow two to three working days for replies from our expert team.

    I hope the chemotherapy treatment goes well.

    Sending you welcoming hugs B xx


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  • Good morning Rosie73, sorry to hear about your husbands' gall bladder cancer, i have not experienced this cancer before as mine were head and neck area , but my mum had the same as your husband. This cancer is quite hard to detect in the early stages as it is hidden by the liver etc so its very gradual and before you know it has grown into a tumour and can be hard to contain hence the risk of it spreading. My mum was the same and was not in any serious pain, to begin with, but because they had trouble diagnosing it at the beginning it was too late to offer any treatment, your husband having the chemotherapy will certainly help to control the spread of the cancer but for how long will vary from person to person, some people show great results from having the chemo so fingers crossed this is the case with your husband, i wish you all the luck in the world with the effectiveness off the chemo, take care.

                                                                                                                               Chris x

    Its sometimes not easy but its worth it ! 

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  • Hello Rosie73, I am so sorry for your hubby's diagnosis and to hear that he has a problem with his lungs now. My father is facing the same cancer and I can relate to the unexpected as you said, little did we know, but I do hope that the chemotherapy works for him, best wishes!

  • Hello, I hope your father is doing well.

    it’s certainly a steep learning curve isn’t it. Who would think how life can change in just 3 short months.

    best wishes to you and your family too

  • Thank you so much! Light and warmth sent your way~