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Thread: Can you live without a pancreas?

  1. #1
    Da' Spellin' Homegirl Grgranny's Avatar
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    Can you live without a pancreas?

    I hope someone knows the answer to this. I suspect I just wasn't give the correct information. My nephew, around 40, is extremely ill. He is the only child of my late sister. They give him 3 months if they don't find a liver to transplant. They have taken out his gall bladder and now I'm told they will take out his spleen and pancreas. He has been at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix and is now living with his wife, as an outpatient, in their little trailer with no air conditioning in PHoenix. Sure would appreciate any prayers. Seems as if things keep getting worse and worse since my husband died.

  2. #2
    Skating Diva Kara Bear's Avatar
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    I don't know the answer to your question but I am keeping your family in my thoughts.

  3. #3
    Rinkside
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    is he currently taking insulin injections? i think one can live without a pancreas as long as they are taking insulin injections. i hope things look up for him.

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    Grgranny, I'm so sorry to read about your nephew. There are two really good sites with information about pancreatic problems and transplantation which you might want to check out.

    www.vh.org/ Follow the path "By topic" and "By Body Location/systems" to digestive system, to Pancreatic Diseases, and Transplantation.

    The second site: http://www.nlm.nim.gov/medlineplus/e...pedia_P-Pl.htm There are several listings for pancreatic diseases and one for transplantation.

    Your nephew will be in my prayers.

  5. #5
    Figure Skating Is A Dangerous Sport Dee4707's Avatar
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    Granny, I will send lots of prayers your way and your family's way. Keep us updated on his condition.

    Dee

  6. #6
    bugs are smarter than we are bronxgirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grgranny
    I hope someone knows the answer to this. I suspect I just wasn't give the correct information. My nephew, around 40, is extremely ill. He is the only child of my late sister. They give him 3 months if they don't find a liver to transplant. They have taken out his gall bladder and now I'm told they will take out his spleen and pancreas. He has been at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix and is now living with his wife, as an outpatient, in their little trailer with no air conditioning in PHoenix. Sure would appreciate any prayers. Seems as if things keep getting worse and worse since my husband died.
    Yes, you can live without a pancreas. it does require insulin injections, and pancreatic extract replacement therapy (to aid in food digestion). There are also institutions that do pancreas transplants. It sounds like he might be a candidate for a multiple (liver and pancreas) transplant, but that depends on the institution and availability of organs. Liver does come first as you cannot live without that organ.

    You definately have my prayers for your nephew's recovery.

  7. #7
    Da' Spellin' Homegirl Grgranny's Avatar
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    Received a little more news. He was only out for the weekend I guess. He's back in for more tests, etc. He is first on the list, they are only waiting now for the insurance answer. I understand that if it is successful, he may not have to lose his pancreas and spleen. Just depends on how everything works when they're done. He is at the Mayo Clinic (or hospital!) in Phoenix.

    I am so grateful to all of your answers and prayers.

  8. #8
    Gliding Along dlkksk8fan's Avatar
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    GrGranny I hope everything works out ok.

    Sending my good thoughts and prayers.

  9. #9
    ~ Figure Skating Is My Passion ~ Ladskater's Avatar
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    Grgranny:

    Sorry to hear your news. In answer to your question: diabetics live without functioning pancreas - thanks to insulin, so yes, one can live, but it would be pretty much the life of a diabetic. What a horrible ordeal for your nephew! I wish him the best - you too!

  10. #10
    Da' Spellin' Homegirl Grgranny's Avatar
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    I haven't heard anything for several days but he has turned almost black and has been in a coma for almost 2 weeks. The insurance co. has never ok'd the transplant and it is obviously too late now. Do the ins co's purposely hold up so as not to pay?

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    I'm so, so sorry you're having to go through this Grgranny.

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    On Edge Piel's Avatar
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    Sending prayers to you and your family. I would like to think that insurance companies would not be that cruel. These days nothing surprises me.

  13. #13
    Da' Spellin' Homegirl Grgranny's Avatar
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    On top of that, my bro that broke his leg in 5 places from a cycle accident - and it has just healed, fell and broke the steel plate they put in. (Someone ran him off the road.) He had two complete fractures and 3 others. They were going to do surgery and replace it but he has a hole in the front, they think it was burnt, that is not healing. He's the one that owns a campground in Idaho. We left there last Weds. My bro in Wyo we visited on way back had two stents in (heart) artery a week ago Mon and has to have another one Thurs. Everybody's falling apart.

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    Health insurance companies are notoriously slow about approving organ transplants. Typically, they will stall, then turn down the first request, and maybe even the second and third, with lots of lost time between requests. Many hospitals will not do transplants unless the insurance company has given the OK or the patient pays for it up front.

    The insurance companies are in a profit-making business and transplants of any kind are extremely expensive, so they callously foot-drag and/or refuse payment in hopes the patient will either improve and not need the transplant after all (very unlikely), or will die.

  15. #15
    Arm Chair Skate Fan show 42's Avatar
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    GrGranny........so sorry for your recent sorrows. It does seem at times that problems come in pairs.........I'm keeping you in my prayers...............42

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