• under pressure

    Asked by tibby150 on Saturday, May 4, 2013

    under pressure

    Hi guys...I'm 2 years out from my whipple surgery and just wondering if any of you get severe pain or should I say pressure like a fist under your breastbone and then basically have to explode on both ends...it's getting very scary...like I'm getting afraid to eat...last night it caused alot of agony...any ideas or is it just gas from what I ate...

    6 Answers from the Community

    6 answers
    • FreeBird's Avatar

      It's best to ask your doctor to get their assessment based on your history.

      My dad does have occasional chest pain under the breastbone and towards the left shoulder. since his diagnosis. This was relieved with the morphine, and nitro. But what happens with him is not necessarily what's going on with you.

      I did read that you might experience reflux with the digestive system problems, and that can feel painful. But I would definitely not mess around with any chest pain and pressure by guessing, and go with your doctor's opinion.

      over 5 years ago
    • Tracy's Avatar

      I would really highly suggest asking your doctor but it also sounds a lot like the symptoms I get with my Gerd - severe heartburn, if I don't take my prilosec every day it starts to feel like my chest is going to explode. But it is important to talk to someone about it - Tracy

      over 5 years ago
    • pancrease54's Avatar


      I would be at t my onc's office Monday morning IF it were me. Had my Whipple 9 years ago on 4/27/2004 and almost like the previous poster I never experienced anything remote similar to that.

      No sense waiting. It never pays off. My Whipple was 9 hours, 9 days in and 2 weeks on the couch

      over 5 years ago
    • JMS's Avatar

      Hi libby150 - I had my Whipple just a bit more than a year ago. I haven't experienced the exact same symptoms as you (and definitely agree with the others who have posted that you should contact your doctor right away), but I have had strange side-effects over the past couple of months and am finding it difficult to get any of my doctors to pay attention to the symptoms, let alone take ownership of them. The principal issue has been a strange protrusion around my navel - which isn't far below the breastbone. It feels like one of the organs may have become loose on one end and is sticking out very visibly - it's a bit hard to explain, but it's fairly painful and has caused further digestive issues. I mention this only in case others may also have experienced the same type of thing.
      I guess my overall take is that the Whipple is in fact a huge operation with ramifications that extend well beyond the immediate recuperation period. With so many separate organs affected by the surgery, I guess we shouldn't be too surprised, but it certainly would be helpful for doctors to give us a better idea of what to expect both immediately after surgery, as well as other issues that can arise during the months and years thereafter.

      over 5 years ago
    • kelley_gleason's Avatar

      I also agree with others about contacting your doctor. I have had many a strange pain after my Whipple 4 years ago, and sometimes there has been something wrong and other times it's been nothing except for something I ate that didn't process very well. I have to adjust my pancreatic enzymes sometimes based on what I did eat to sort of "counter act" what I ate. Keep us posted on what you do and learn as we all can benefit.

      over 5 years ago
    • Russ' Avatar

      I am a 12 year pancreatic cancer survivor, and while I was undergoing treatments there was very little that I could eat...I vomited every day, and after treatments were finished I had bloating and pain, but it was along the scar from my surgery. Just about everything we eat goes through the pancreas, but because I lost 40% of my pancreas it has to work extra hard with the help of enzyme pills. Consequently when I am done eating I can feel my pancreas becoming cramped very easily and swelling up. I have had problems with my bowel movements for a very long time. In the first 6-7 years I had many accidents because I could not control my bowels. It got to the point where it was very embarrassing and humiliating. These past 5 years it seems to be better, but I will still have an accident every once in awhile. I know where the bathroom is in every store I go into. When I have an appointment or want to play golf in the mornings I have to get up 2 hours early so I can have my breakfast and hopefully go to the bathroom before I leave the house. I wrote a book about my life pre-cancer, battling cancer, and my life post cancer. In the book there is a chapter on side effects, short-term and long-term. There is a separate chapter about my battle with my digestive system. I never had the book published, but it was very therapeutic for me. I hope that all of this is of some help to you, but please check with your doctor. There is also something called ascites (a-site-eez). That is when the pancreas leaks fluid in to the abdomen and causes swelling and bloating...so check with your doctor. All of us have different reactions to our battles with pancreatic cancer and how we deal with our treatments. We all react differently. Therefore take all of the answers that we have given you here on WhatNext with a grain of salt. Then ask your doctor if any of this is what you are experiencing. Nobody knows your body better than you do, but the doctors are the experts, so ask them the same questions you would ask us. Good luck to you and if you have more questions do not hesitate to ask us...let us know how you are doing.

      Best regards,

      over 5 years ago

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