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In Their Own Words

Cancer - George H.

03/08/2016

When George Haskin felt the pain in his back, he knew it was a kidney stone—like the one he had before. What George did not know was that he also had an advanced stage of a very rare form of appendix cancer called pseudomyxoma peritonei (PMP). A CT scan done in the hospital emergency room showed there were multiple tumors in his abdomen.

George went to his primary care doctor who sent him to an oncologist. He was told the slow growing cancer was not treatable. George was encouraged to seek palliative care, which supports people with serious illness likely to be terminal. Up to this point, no one had offered any hope.

But, rays of hope did appear when George met surgeon J. Augusto Bastidas, MD. Dr. Bastidas had experience performing the long, arduous surgery needed to remove as much of the cancerous tissue as possible. He also recommended a type of heated chemotherapy called HIPEC, to be administered in the operating room after surgery.

George went through more than seven hours of surgery. His appendix, gallbladder, spleen, most of his large intestine and part of his small intestine were removed, and then the HIPEC treatment was given. After16 days in Good Samaritan Hospital, George returned home to continue his long, difficult road to recovery. He lost 90 lbs., some of which he has now regained.

More than a year since his surgery, George has come a long way. He still has limited stamina and feels pain at times. He knows his cancer is not cured, nevertheless, he enjoys his life, including his woodworking hobby.

Considering the number of organs I lost, I am doing extremely well,” George says. “So far, I can’t say the treatment has saved my life, but it has certainly prolonged it. For that, I am most grateful.”