Sunday, July 3, 2011

Peri-Ampullary Cancer Survivor

I'd like to discuss more about this subject as a lot of people from different countries had viewed my blog and emailed me about my survival. They asked about my diet and even seek advised on what precautions to do, whether they will continue chemo.and radiation therapy or not. I have no authority to give my opinion since I'm not a doctor so I always tell them to seek advise from medical professionals or experts on these matters. Your doctor is the best person to ask. Only your doctor can diagnose and treat a medical problem.

Well, 20 years is a long way, I don't know if I am the longest survivor of peri-ampullary cancer. After my Whipple surgery in 1991, the gastroenterologist recommended chemo or radiation therapy but my surgeon advised me not to have any. By the way, I have a type 2 diabetes.

I have not heard of this kind of cancer in my whole life, pancreatic cancer yes, but peri-ampullary never. My operative findings was 3-4 cm, mushroom-shaped involving the entire ampulla of vater. After the whipple procedure which took about six hours, the diagnosis were: pancreas, common bile duct, stomach, gall bladder, gastric and duodenal margins of resection were negative for carcinoma.


 My cancer was periampullary. To fully understand the nature of ampullary carcinoma, it is important to know a little about the anatomy of the region, Ampullary cancer is a form of bile duct cancer. 
This cancer is a type of cancer that grows first part of you intestine, the duodenum. 
photo credits to Krames Communications



What is ampulla of vater? "ampulla of Vater" is named after Abraham Vater (1684-1751), a German anatomist who first published a description of it in 1720.

Periampullary means sorrounding the ampulla. The ampulla of vater is the doudenal end of the drainage systems of the pancreatic and common bile ducts. It serves as passageway of bile and pancreatic juices from the liver, pancreas, and gallbladder to the small intestine, helping in digestion.

The ampulla of Vater (Latin: papilla Vateri, papilla duodeni major), also known as the hepatopancreatic ampulla, is formed by the union of the pancreatic duct and the common bile duct. The ampulla is specifically located at the major duodenal papilla.


Carcinoma of the ampulla of vater tends to manifest early, since they guard the exit of the bile duct, so any growth that blocks or narrow the outflow of the bile will create symptoms due to the damming-back of bile into the liver and to the general blood circulation.


Whipple Procedure - was named after Dr. Allen Whipple an American surgeon. He began work on the procedure for resection of the pancreas (pancreaticoduodenectomy) in 1935 and his original technique has since been modified greatly. In 1940, he shortened the procedure into a one-stage process.
During his lifetime, Whipple performed 37 pancreaticoduodenectomies.
Note: As for my diet, I eat anything except foods that are rich in fats. Please visit the site www.cancer.com for other survival forums


Reference: Wikipedia

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