After experiencing pain while driving, a father of three had three organs removed.
A dad of three who had stomach pains was told he had tumours in his pancreas just six months later.
Barry Grace was given the option of letting the tumors develop or having a “life-changing” procedure. The now 41-year-old chose the latter option.
Barry found out on New Years Eve 2013 that he had the tumours, the next month he had a 12 hour surgery that saw surgeons remove his pancreas, gallbladder and spleen, changing his life forever at just 33-years-old.
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“I’d been getting stomach pains,” the diehard Evertonian from Sefton told The Washington Newsday. Then one Sunday, I was traveling to referee a [football]game and I started having these pains, so I ended up driving myself to the hospital.
“Over a period of time I’d had a scan done then I was told I had to have another scan. They compared the two scans which were six months apart and it turns out I had benign tumours on my pancreas that were growing and multiplying.
“I was given the news and told I can either have this operation or I could wait another six months and see how it’s progressed from then. It was a no brainer.
“That happened on New Year’s Eve 2013, and I had the surgery in January 2014.” Because cancer was spreading at the time, doctors ended up removing my pancreas, gallbladder, and spleen.
“It was a big 12 hour operation I ended up having. I was in hospital for two weeks.
“Since then, I’ve had a lot more issues with it. As a result of the operation, I’m now diabetic, and my type is 3C. I’ve recently been diagnosed with angina pectoris. My life has completely transformed since the operation.”
Barry, dad to Kayleigh, 19, Sean, 17, and Steven, 15, has said it has been “life changing” for not just him but his three children and wife, Claire, 41.
He told The Washington Newsday, “Since this pandemic, I’ve become clinically exceedingly vulnerable because I’m a diabetic and my spleen has been removed, I’m now clinically extremely fragile.”
“I don’t have an immune system at all. Altogether I take about 16 or 17 tablets in the morning and eight or nine at night. Because of my stomach problems I take enzymes which varies with what type of meal I have. I take anywhere between five and 15 tablets per meal just to digest food.
“I have high blood pressure and I suffer with my back which is down to the operation. Where I was opened up at the front they cut through my nerve systems which now means I suffer with my back.
“It’s been life changing, not just for myself but for my family as well.”