Pancreas Cancer Web


Our mother, Pat Brockmyre was diagnosed May 30, 1997 with Pancreatic Cancer with mets to the liver, Stage IV, inoperable. She was diagnosed after being hospitilized for the third time with blood clots. Her age at the time was 57, female, smoker, slightly overweight. She had had some weight loss <10 pounds. She sought a second opinion, and went with the second doctor. She immediately began a treatment of gemzar once a week. After 3 weeks, her blood counts were not good, so she switched to gemzar every other week. She had very few side effects, and the gemzar reduced the size of the tumor. Her ca-19 went from 20,000 at diagnosis down to 94, at which time the gemzar stopped working, 5 months after she began treatment. The doctor suggested she go to Roswell, a cancer hospital in Buffalo NY, where we discussed an experimental procedure-gene therapy.My mother decided against this, as it wouldn't show any effects for 6-8 weeks, and she and my father felt that was too long to wait, at her stage. So they tried 5-fu, to which she didn't respond, and finally a third chemo, which had no result (Ican't remember the name). She began having a problem with bloating (ascites) in January, and was drained 4 times over the next few weeks. She died at home on February 1, 1998.Teri and I are two of her 8 children. She has 16 grandchildren, and my father (who had since entered the seminary to become a priest!). Teri and I live in the same town as my mother did, thus our high input. We often went to the doctors with her, or to chemo. At the time of diagnosis, our youngest sister was a senior in high school, and went to college in Boston. Our other sister, Jennifer, moved home from Memphis Tennessee to live with Mom and Dad while my mom was sick, and stayed after my mother died to help my father get through the first wave of grief. We have been blessed with a supportive family, but still miss our mother everyday. Our lives are forever changed. Teri came on this support group after my mother died, and I was here while she was sick. And thank you to all of you who have helped us so very, very much!

Addendum from Teri:
Just a couple things I'd like to add: Altho I think it's clear to most, Jody and Teri are sisters. Pat Brockmyre , our mother, died of pc. The third chemo Mom tried was CCNU(lomustine). Her second blood clot caused the hemo doc to look for a malignancy, but she continued to have clotting problems for 2 months after dx. I'd like to add my own thought here about my mother: Although her denial of the illness drove me crazy, I now realize that she was the toughest, bravest lady I know. She didn't want us mourning her while she was here, but to enjoy the time we had left together. She loved us kids and Dad so completely. I miss her everyday, and long to hear her voice. I absolutely detest this disease that stole her from us.

Posted 10/21/1998 11:19 am by Jody
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