© Gastrectomy Connections 2017

  • Michelle Lykokapis

The Call That Changed Everything



My stomachless journey started with a phone call.

I don’t not remember the date, but I remember the call. It was from our youngest sister telling me through tears that she had breast cancer. At that time I had no way of knowing that a few months later there would be a second call. This time from me to her letting her know that I too had tested positive for the CDH1 genetic mutation. Both were filled with tears, anger and fear.

It took a while for me to come to the realization that having my stomach removed was really the only decision I had. There is a lot you have to consider. Stomach cancer claimed the life of my Grandpa. My mother shared the CDH1 and battled breast cancer. It also attacked my sister. Still another form of cancer claimed the life of my father. So in the end even having the chance to eliminating even one form of cancer was worth the risk.

I had my TG on August 4th of 2015 at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester Minnesota. It was supposed to be laparoscopically done but there was a complication during surgery and they needed to open me up. After the surgery there was a number of strictures and another extended hospital stay.

A few years later and more than just a few bumps in the road I am doing fine. I am active and have run a couple of 5Ks. More importantly, I recently became a Grandfather. One important reason to celebrate being stomachless.

I keep track of my journey through blog if you would like to read more.

https://rogerengnell.blogspot.com/

#CDH1 #GastricCancer #totalgastrectomy #Gastrectomy #GuestBlogger #Stomachless #GastricSurgery #geneticdisorders