I was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer on 25th May 2011 when I was experiencing persistent discomfort in my abdomen. Referral followed to a specialist who confirmed my condition.
The chemotherapy treatment started later in 2011, together with taking tablets that I take twice a day. I also have diabetes that I take tablets for, together with insulin injections and I continue to have the chemotherapy treatments.
After diagnosis I had swelling in both legs that did gradually subside. I have difficulty in maintaining my balance, so when away from home use a walking stick that helps me not to topple and aids general confidence.
The continuing effects of the treatment is a very sensitive feeling in my feet and lower back. Furthermore I have a very reduced appetite, so food does not taste as it should and things I used to like eating, I no longer do.
During the early days my ‘markers’ were at 5000 and this figure has significantly reduced to the mid-50s.
In the main I have coped well in having this condition, and have had much support from my family, especially my wife and grown-up children, who show great interest in how I am coping with treatment and keep me abreast of encouraging information that comes their way that I can take strength from.
My condition has improved from my early months after being diagnosed and the days have long passed when my son-in-laws could be seen wheeling me about in a wheelchair on hospital visits.
I did lose weight by 2 stone initially which I have regained substantially. My appearance hasn’t altered in that I do not look like one who is unwell.
In all, my experience of interacting with medical staff and others that I have met has been a positive one, and I hope I have a number of years before me which, in part, is so far due to the encouragement I experience from my family.