This is my husband Tom with our daughter and grandkids. We have been together for nearly 20 years. In that time we have been through many things together, the birth of our grandkids, lost jobs, financial challenges just to name a few.
Tom has always told me that he doesn’t have family longevity. He lost his parents at an early age and four of his seven siblings all while in their 50’s. That’s why when he told me he wanted to retire at 62 I understood and didn’t have a problem with it even though we could have used the money he would have brought in. After a year he decided to get a part-time job to get out of the house. This last May he found one and as he started his I lost my job. This hit us hard because I was carrying the health insurance for us. Tom researched all about available health coverage and since we didn’t have much money coming in we were able to sign up for Obama care.
In the coming weeks he started having stomach problems. We thought he might be getting an ulcer and after 4 weeks of pain he finally went to the emergency room. They did all kinds of tests and thought he had gallstones. The surgeon that was going to go in and remove them wanted an MRI done first. This showed what looked like a small mass in the area of the bile duct. After looking at all the scans and tests etc. the surgeon felt there was more going on and that more experienced doctors should deal with it. They took Tom to UPMC in Pittsburgh via ambulance that Saturday afternoon. After admitting him they just monitored him until Monday morning when they went in to see what was going on. They do this all through a scope that goes down your throat to the affected area. They discovered that his bile duct was closed because of a small mass and put in a stint to open it up and took a biopsy of the mass. This particular procedure can cause pancreatitis and it did. At this point Tom is in a lot of pain and isn’t eating because of it.
The pathology from the mass came back as cancer. It is not just any cancer it is called choangio carcinoma. It’s a rare cancer that only affects 1 in 100,000 people. Though it’s rare the doctors inform us that my husband has better chance of survival than if he had pancreatic cancer. They also informed us that it is aggressive and needs to be dealt with quickly. The course of action is to do a surgery that is called the Whipple. It involves taking a part of his stomach, pancreas and small intestine and all of the bile duct and gall bladder. Once this is done they have to reconnect everything so that he can digest food. They tell us it is more involved that heart surgery and will take around six hours to complete. Once the surgery is complete he will need to recuperate for several months and then they will put him through chemo therapy to ensure there is no cancer left.
Although we do have Obama care it will not cover a portion of the expenses. Our income consists of my unemployment and his retirement social security. I look for a job every day and hopefully that will happen sooner rather than later. Right now I am the one taking care of my husband but I will have to find someone else to do this when I go back to work. The expenses keep coming and we don’t know when it will end. That is why I am asking for any assistance you can give. Please help me get my husband back his health. I would really like to keep him around for a long time. Any and all assistance is greatly appreciated.
- Anonymous Anonymous
- Susan Albright Williamson
- Ellen Welker
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