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Episode 3: The Chemo Commences

Take a little tour with me today when I tell you all the details of my experience with my first chemotherapy round of FOLFIRINOX. That four-drug combination has proved to be a lifesaver for people like me who have pancreatic cancer. But I can tell you there are consequences for using such a powerful drug cocktail — and I experienced them all. You’ll learn about my neurotoxicity.  About a cholinergic crisis. About the application of atropine. And how I thought I’d seen my last day on my first day of chemo. 

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Podcast

Episode 2: The Dragonslayers

When you have a dragon inside you like pancreatic cancer, you want to find the best dragonslayers out there. In this episode, I talk about finding the best medical team and undergoing my first treatment evaluation at Mayo Clinic.

I start out talking about my experience (and my panic attack) in the PET-CT scan. Then I talk about the research I did to find a medical team to guide me through this treatment. And then talk about a laparoscopic surgery to look for metastatic tumors…and the installation of my chemo port. 

If you would like to contact me, please send an email to adventuresofpancanman@gmail.com. I’ve love some feedback. And to hear your stories. The Adventures of PanCan Man is designed to be a community project — I’m just telling my story first. 

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Podcast

Episode 1: The Diagnosis

There’s an uh-oh moment when you’re told you have pancreatic cancer. But what happens before that? How do you know if you have the symptoms?

In this episode we hear about the pancreatic cancer diagnosis for host Frank Roche. Yep, that’s me. And I talk about what led me to being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer nine months ago: stomach cramps, dark urine, jaundice. And I talk about the rapid steps my PCP and gastroenterologist used to diagnose me initially — sonogram, contrast CT, MRI — and then the interventions they used to treat my jaundice and stage my cancer — ERCP and EUS.

This show is the beginning of a story. As of the publication of this show I have had 12 rounds of chemo, and I’ll soon me moving to radiation and then surgery. In Episode 2 I’ll talk about finding the best medical team to help me slay this dragon.