Jaundice & Itching

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Jaundice & Itching

by kanntguy on Wed Jul 15, 2009 12:00 AM

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Hello,

As I have written on here before, my brother in law (46 years old) has been diagnosed with pancreatic & liver cancer within the past month.  He just returned from MD Anderson, the cancer is also in his lungs and possibly his lymph nodes.

He has returned home for chemo to be close to his family, this was recommended by the drs at MD.

Here is my question - he is jaundice and has been told that they can`t start treatment until the jaundice is gone.  In the meantime his skin is so itchy that he is going out of his mind.

Does anyone have any suggestions on treating the itching and have you heard any of this information before?

Thank you and God bless-

RE: Jaundice & Itching

by Joan_l_3 on Wed Jul 15, 2009 12:00 AM

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Jaundice and itching in this situation are due to blockage of the bile duct, causing bile to back up in the body and the deposits of bile in the skin cause both symptoms.  Treatment is insertion of a stent to carry the bile where it is supposed to go.  Why wasn't a stent inserted at M. D. Anderson?  A patient can't just wait for the jaundice to go away; it won't on it's own.  What was he told about this at Anderson?  Something is wrong here; you need to speak to the docs to find out what is going on and why a stent wasn't put in  @ Anderson.

Joan L 

RE: Jaundice & Itching

by kanntguy on Wed Jul 15, 2009 12:00 AM

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I`m sorry, I failed to include that information. 

A stint was put in on July 8 at MD. The bile in the blood when tested on the 7th was at 15.4, the results from the blood work done today show the bile in the blood at 21.  He was released on the 10th.

I apologize for any errors in repeating this info. this is all new to us.

MD said he does not qualify for a clinical trial or surgery.  My understanding is that they sent him home to do treatment to be closer to his family.  This makes us wonder if they don`t feel as if they can help him.

He is frustrated at the pace things are moving now that he is back home.  We really don`t know what to do to be honest with you. 

Thank you for taking the time to respond.  Reply back if I errored in how I stated his blood work results.

RE: Jaundice & Itching

by Joan_l_3 on Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:00 AM

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I would say if the stent was inserted on July and he still has jaundice and itching a week later, it's pretty obvious that the stent has failed to work.  When my husband's stent was inserted he had immediate relief from his symptoms of jaundice and itching.  I understand the frustration of nothing happening; he needs to be seen ASAP by a pc doc or a GI doc who can get him on the right track for replacing the non-working stent with a new one that will work for him and provide some relief for him.  It will also allow the chemo to begin.

Maybe a trip to the ER is the best place to start.  That will usually jump start things that have bogged down, not to mention that he must be almost out of his mind from the itching of his skin.

Good luck.

Joan L

 

RE: Jaundice & Itching

by kanntguy on Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:00 AM

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Thank you for your advice!  You have been very helpful, I will be passing this information along.

God Bless you!

RE: Jaundice & Itching

by The_Wife on Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:00 AM

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I have to agree with MD Anderson that the best place to get treatment in most cases is near home. I don't see this as giving up. It's just that whatever treatment they recommend is available near home. I think this is a sound policy for the patient's emotional health a well as physical health. Good luck to your family.

RE: Jaundice & Itching

by Jeanl on Fri Jul 17, 2009 12:00 AM

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One of my first symptoms was jaundice, and did it ever itch.  I found warm showers and a moderate scrubbing with body wash would relieve the itching for a few hours.  It can't hurt to try.

My first stent migrated and I ended up in the hospital with pancreatitus for four days.  When that calmed down they put in a metal stent which stayed where it was supposed to and allowed the bile to drain properly.

Jeanl 

RE: Jaundice & Itching

by kanntguy on Fri Jul 17, 2009 12:00 AM

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Thank you for your reply and I'm sorry you have had to endure this.  He had a new stint put it in today.

How long after yours did you get relief?

Thank you for the suggestion, I will be passing that on.

God bless!

RE: Jaundice & Itching

by kanntguy on Fri Jul 17, 2009 12:00 AM

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Thank you for your reply.  This message board has been a God send.

I'm so grateful we came across it and for the people willing to take a minute and respond.

God Bless!

 

RE: Jaundice & Itching

by kanntguy on Fri Jul 17, 2009 12:00 AM

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Joan,

Thank you for your advice!  My brother in law had a new stint put in today, he is scheduled to start chemo on Tues if all goes well.

God bless you!

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