Jefferson University Hospitals

A Mother of Twins Receives Pancreatic Tumor Diagnosis

"Dr. Yeo and his staff were an integral part of my recovery"

In February 2007, I was symptom-free, expect for a small hernia in my abdomen, which I was having surgery to repair. MRI concluded that this was indeed a hernia but something else was showing up on the MRI - a small mass near my pancreas. "This wasn't happening," immediately came into my mind. I was a healthy, athletic, 39 year old, married mother of 12 year old twins.

I underwent a series of biopsies that ultimately did reveal a pre-cancerous tumor of the pancreas. My immunopathology report revealed a solid-pseudopapillary tumor of the pancreas. I went to see Dr. Edith Mitchell at Jefferson and she referred me to Dr. Charles Yeo. He removed a tumor the size of a grapefruit. I had a distal pancreatectomy, splenectomy and cholecystomy- part of my pancreas, my spleen and gallbladder were removed. It’s a good thing I saw Dr. Yeo when I did, had the tumor gone unchecked, my condition would have significantly deteriorated within months.

I returned to work 6 weeks after surgery. I continue to do everything I was able to do before the surgery. With the support of my family and friends I was able to keep focus on getting well again and Dr. Yeo and his staff were an integral part of my recovery.

Early detection was critical for me and fortunately my tumor was pre-malignant. No radiation or chemotherapy was needed. Every 6 months I return for a PET/CT scan at Jefferson and a year and half later I am still clear!! I cannot stress early detection enough because that is what saved me and may save the lives of others.