About Me

I have been affected by pancreatitis since 2002.  As most of you know, back in 2012 the doctors felt that I had pre-cancer of the pancreas and I had to have The “Whipple Procedure” Surgery.  As a result of that surgery, I’m in the hospital every 4 months or so and have a poor quality of life with constant pain of some degree.  My future does not show much hope for improvement. I have been given a second chance at life with the opportunity of having a surgery called a Total Pancreatectomy and Islet Auto-Transplant (TP-IAT) at the University of Minnesota.  It will involve removing the rest of my pancreas, my spleen and more of my small intestine.  They will then remove the Islet of Langerhans cells from the pancreas which control the body’s insulin and other essential hormones, then transplant them into my liver through the portal vein. This surgery normally takes about 10 to 12 hours, but since I have had the Whipple Procedure my surgery is expected to take about 7 to 8 hours. The recovery period will be 2 days in ICU and 7 to 12 days in the hospital. Following that, I will need to stay near the hospital for 5  to 6 weeks while they make sure everything is progressing as expected. I will be a diabetic until the newly transplanted Islet cells begin to function and produce insulin as they did when they were in my pancreas, with hope this will take 4 to 6 months. All this is being done by the world’s leading doctors at the University of Minnesota Medical College and Hospital.  They are the ones that pioneered this surgery. This is all still fairly new but has been successfully performed in over 300 Whipple patients.  I was selected in early July and my Surgery is scheduled for August 31st. My future now looks hopeful.  I still need lots of things to go smoothly and most of all good wishes and PRAYERS. Thank you.