1118884 tn?1338592850

Quality of life after stoma bag

I have been reading posts in this forum and although I don't understand all of the terms, I do know some.

I am a 2 yr survivor of anal cancer and radiation/chemo treatment.  When I was diagnosed with stage IIIb anal cancer and given a 60% chance of living, I was told the radical treatment was tough but the only way to beat the cancer.

My surgeon added that if this didn't work, he would have to do surgery and I'd live with a stoma bag.

My quality of life has decreased already because of radiation damage, so I am ready to just say 'no' to a bag.

This forum uses terms I don't understand, but it appears one can have colon or anal cancer and have a surgery which does not leave you with a bag.  

Any comments?


3 Responses
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Avatar universal
Colon and anal cancers are very different in how they behave and sometimes how they are treated.  In your case, if chemo and radiation have not been completely effective and your doctor recommends surgery, unfortunately the only option would be with a bag, or stoma.  I know that the idea of having a stoma can be frightening...however, the majority of people who have one can lead very normal lives.  Depending how much trouble you're having from the radiation, having a bag may actually improve your quality of life.  Best of luck.
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1118884 tn?1338592850
Thanks for the reply.

I needed to hear that a stoma is not all that hard to adjust to, in case it becomes necessary.

Will continue thinking positively and working with body to keep healthy.

Too many issues and I am in overload.  Remember thinking that worries would be over once I healed from radiation burns.  Realize now that healing is a process; body keeps changing.   I will keep 3 month appts and try not to worry.
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Avatar universal
kocherize did not mention if he has ever had a stoma bag.  I have had one and I can tell you that of my entire cancer experience, that was the very worst part.  I HATED it.  It takes some time to heal from radiation (it took me almost 2 years).  Hang in there and don't rush into getting the ostomy - I would do almost anything to avoid that.  Best of luck to you.

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