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Beating Bowel Cancer Community

Stage 4 bowel cancer


Need some hope

Hi everyone, I'm new to this forum. Apologies in advance for rambling, but I'm looking for some hope and postive stories, and if possible, advice on what we should be asking the oncologist for. My husband was diagnosed in August 2016 with stage iv bowel cancer with multiple liver mets, peritoneum, and a tiny appearance in a lymph node round his back. Due to the far lymph node spread, we've been told he's inoperable.

After having a stent fitted, he started fortnightly doses of cetuximab with irinotecan. His 3 month scan brought positive news, with no evidence of disease in the far node, and significant shrinkage in the tumours in his liver. We were told that while surgery still wasn't an option (high chance of reoccurrence due to previous evidence in the far node), he could step down to a maintenance programme after the next scan. However the next scan didn't bring the news we'd been hoping to hear. While the mets in his liver had continued to shrink and there was still no evidence in the far node, the tumour in his bowel had begun to change a little and there was a "tiny" spread in his abdomen. The oncologist felt that his body has already got used to the cetuximab, so felt a change in drug protocol was required. We were crushed as we'd heard so much about how cetuximab has prolonged people's lives. He's now on oxaliplatin, and due to have his 5th treatment on Thursday. He's recently been having some discomfort in his tummy, which he feels us due to constipation, but my mind is running away with me. I'm trying so hard to be positive and strong, but this weekend find myself struggling. We had 3 children placed with us for adoption only 6 months before his diagnosis, which is stressful enough in iteself! My husband was 38 at the time of his diagnosis (now 39).


Hello @Rach77.

I don't know much about your husband's situation though I am sure others with more knowledge will post later at the end of the weekend. There are as many outcomes as there are patients. Your specialist nurse or oncologist would be the best people to ask about stomach discomfort and to check it out thoroughly. Constipation can become very painful as I know to my cost and which developed as a direct result of having bowel cancer.

It's wonderful that you've adopted 3 children.


Hi @Rach77
As @belinda66 says, it would be best to discuss this particular problem with your husband's specialist. But why do the most worrying things crop up at the weekend? It sounds as if his oncologist is on the case so that is reassuring.

Have a look at the booklets on the nurses' section for more information, or contact them on Monday. And I expect others here will have got personal experiences to share.

But you must be feeling the strain! A friend's daughter has just adopted sibling toddlers and so I have learned a lot recently about the delights and about the complications. Do you have support from friends and family? Don't forget that they will be happy to rally round if you ask. And, please, continue to 'ramble' here. It helps to put your thoughts down in writing, especially when you don't want to add to your partner's worries.


Hi @Rach77 . Don't worry. Miracle happen all the time and this forum full of people told inoperable and then great Chemo shrinks things. It's brill your hubby now on Oxylaplatin. It's tough but a total 'bad ass' Chemo. I was diagnosed last Aug age 36. had op to remove bowel tumour and Stage 4 with mets peritoneum and para aortic lymphs. Had 12 cycles Folfirinox Oct - March and PET scan April showed nothing there now bar something lymphs to see again soon. There's all sorts on internet about natural things but green tea and turmeric v good I do two green tea and turmeric every day. Maybe it does nothing but I want to feel trying anything!! Hang in there. And that new Chemo is good news lots love :x::x::x::x::x:

Community user

Miracles happen...., he is here today and so are you .... and we are all here today. Dont lose a second because none of us know what tomorrow will bring.


Thank you for your replies. After it was becoming clear that he was becoming increasingly uncomfortable last night, we rang Christies outreach team who were great. We were advised to go a&e where they diagnosed an obstructed bowel. The tumour in his bowel has changed shape as it has continued to progress in parts, while in other parts it has been zapped. I suppose the concern now is that the oxylaplatin isn't effective, but then he's only had 4 cycles of it so I refuse to give up hope on it! Strangely feeling more positive now. It's the not knowing that is often harder sometimes.