paracentesis and ascities round 2

A few weeks ago I shared about some of my new health struggles in the post ascities … another bump in the road.  That was three weeks ago and I had been diagnosed with ascities and 3.6 liters of excess abdominal fluid had been drawn out of my body.

My last chemo treatment was on June 3 but I’m meeting with my oncologist weekly as we work through this latest bump in the road … which all symptoms (ascities, enlarged spleen, lab work and weight loss) seem to suggest is liver related (according to my oncologist and internet research).

Since the first week of June I have lost over 30 pounds and am currently under 200 pounds (that’s even with the new beard) for the first time in over 20 years … not a weight loss plan I recommend.

Most days include two very small meals and one mid-afternoon snack.  Breakfast is usually a boiled egg, fruit and half an English muffin.  The afternoon snack is usually a McDs strawberry banana smoothie.  And supper is usually a salad (which has meant more visits to local farmer markets), a McDs grilled ranch chicken snack wrap or some grilled chicken or fish with rice or pasta.   Yet digestion can still be a real problem at times.

So at this week’s visit with the oncologist we discussed the digestion issues and we did another stomach check … it was once again as taut and bloated as it was three weeks ago.  So my doctor sent me over to the hospital for another paracentesis.

THE GOOD NEWS: From hospital registration, through the paracentesis and release to go home was a brief 90 minutes … and this was for a add-in NOT a scheduled procedure.  I love Northeast Georgia Medical Center and all the folks who work there … I have had some incredible experiences there over the last six years.

THE BAD NEWS:  They drew off another 3.2 liters of excess fluid out of my abdomen … that’s 6.8 liters over a three week period.  But  it really does provide some relief and takes the pressure off my stomach so I can eat … even though there are some foods my liver doesn’t seem to like.

Some folks who suffer with ascities end up having a paracentesis every week … I’m hoping that is not part of my future.  My doctors (oncologist and gastroenterologist) are trying to manage it with diuretics … Spironolactone 50 mg and Furosemide 20 mg … both once a day.

Next steps … my gastroenterologist has been reviewing labwork and my scans for the last week and I have a follow-up appointment on Monday … so hopefully I will know more about what’s going on Monday.

Lord, increase my faith … my trust in You … during the midst of this health trial … I need the peace and patience Lord that only you can provide.

Intercessory prayers appreciated … actually greatly appreciated!



About bwebbjr

A grandfather, father, husband, man, and a child of God who is following Christ Jesus and working out his salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work IN me, both to will and to work for His good pleasure (Philippians 2:12-13). I dodged my first bullet with cancer when a cancerous polyp was removed in a sigmoid colectomy surgery in August 2007. Four years later, in the midst of a second colectomy surgery we discovered I had Stage IV metastatic colon cancer. Rather than colectomy surgery I had colostomy surgery, which now means the colostomy bag is a part of my everyday life ... with the emphasis on life. God has given us a peace beyond understanding as my wife and I have traveled this journey. By the grace of God I am blessed to be a 6 plus year cancer survivor aka warrior. In writing, I am often wrestling with my own personal struggles and beliefs and in the midst God leads me to a lesson He wants me to learn ... or sometimes He simply touches me in the revelation of Himself. My hope is that the result you see here might touch your heart and glorify God. And let me be clear ... I am not the only one with something to say. Please join in the conversation sharing your faith, your cancer experiences, etc. I would love to hear from you. Bernie
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10 Responses to paracentesis and ascities round 2

  1. Bernie:
    I would love for you to consider altering your diet a bit to give your digestion a rest and improve your fluid balance. Let me know if I’m out of line with this suggestion, or e-mail me at sister for details. I would love to help you feel better and your liver needs a break. I live in Georgia too and wouldn’t mind making a house call 🙂 but of course it’s totally up to you.

    • bwebbjr says:

      Thank you so much for this very generous offer … I’d like to get through my gastroenterologist visit on Monday so hopefully I know what exactly is going on with my liver before making any changes … your suggestion is definitely NOT out of line and I certainly appreciate your concern. More than likely I will be e-mailing you the first of the week.

      Thanks again!


  2. jasonlovelace says:

    I wonder, Bernie, if my Dad isn’t suffering similarly to you. He recently had to go to the ER with severe abdominal pain, and his rt. leg has swollen up three times its normal size. At any rate, we have you in our prayers.

    • bwebbjr says:

      Thanks for the prayers Jason … praying the doctors can quickly determine what is going on with your father (seems like oftentimes the diagnosis is the slowest phase) and begin some treatment that will ease his pain and his swelling. Oh Lord, we pray that you bring comfort and healing to Jason’s Dad. Bernie

  3. Ah, Lord God, Thou hast made the heavens and the earth by thy great power!
    Ah, Lord God, Thou has made the heavens and the earth by thine outstretched arm!
    Nothing is too difficult for Thee! Nothing is too difficult for thee!
    Great and mighty God, Great in Power and mighty in deed!
    Nothing, nothing, absolutely nothing! Nothing is too difficult for Thee!

    I pray for strength and courage for Bernie and for your guidance to his physicians. Nothing, nothing, absolutely nothing is too difficult for Thee! Increase Bernie’s faith and bless him Lord for he is your faithful servant. In the name of Jesus, Amen and Amen!

  4. Here with you, Bernie.
    Hope Monday’s visit is helpful. Savvy Sister’s suggestion sounds good too.

    • bwebbjr says:

      Thanks Dawn … unfortunately Monday’s visit did not share too much additional light on what is going on. But they did take six or sever vials of blood for labwork and I have a follow-up visit this next Monday with the actual doctor (have been meeting with physician assistants). And yes indeed, Savvy Sister’s suggestion does sound extremely good.

      Hope and pray things are improving for you and yours!


  5. judikruis says:

    Thank you Lord that You know every inch of Bernie’s body. We pray for Your wisdom to be shared with those working on his care. We pray for his body to feel Your restoration and function as You designed. We give thanks and praise for all that is being done to find answers and bring relief and look forward to how you will work ALL of these things for good!

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