My doctor is recommending I get the Whipple procedure. Is it an effective treatment for my ampullary cancer? And, what is it?

By: Dr. Thomas Incledon

My doctor is recommending I get the Whipple procedure. Is it an effective treatment for my ampullary cancer? And, what is it?

The Whipple procedure or a pancreaticoduodenectomy is a surgery that removes the head of the pancreas, as well as the first part of the small intestine, gallbladder, and bile ducts. All these body parts are involved in digestion, so the surgeon will reattach the rest of the body parts, so people can still eat, digest food, and filter out waste.

“While there are risks with the procedure, as with any surgery, the survival rates are much better than they used to be with the Whipple procedure,” says Dr. Tom Incledon, Founder and CEO of Causenta. “Patients also have to weigh the benefits with the risk for their particular case.” He notes that for many patients with ampullary cancer, if they do not have the Whipple procedure, they will likely die sooner than if they had done it.

Research shows that having the Whipple procedure improves the 5-year survival rate for those with ampullary cancer by 25%. However, there are some limitations to the procedure taking it off the table as a treatment option for certain patients. For the surgery to be effective, a person’s ampullary cancer must be clustered or focused in this area. Usually, this means the cancer was detected early. In these cases, surgery can be a good option because it removes the cancer from the body immediately. Incledon cautions that patients should be sure their blood is tested for any ampullary cancer cells that may remain in the body following surgery.

“If the cancer is already in the blood, surgery is not an appropriate first treatment,” says Incledon. “In those cases, doctors may do a Whipple procedure as a secondary strategy once the sign of cancer in the blood is gone.” Whether used as an initial or follow-up strategy, Incledon recommends thinking of the Whipple procedure as part of a treatment plan, not THE treatment plan.

With this in mind, there are other treatment options for ampullary cancer. Traditionally, these are chemotherapy and radiation. At Causenta, they also look at each patient’s vitamin and mineral status to provide additional naturopathic strategies that can fight the cancer and improve quality of life.

Incledon also stresses the importance of exercise for cancer patients. “Being active helps your immune system do a better job fighting the cancer,” he explains. While the FDA does not yet recognize physical therapy and exercise as strategies for fighting cancer, at Causenta, they are seeing results. “We are masters at this,” says Incledon. “We can tell if the regiment you are on is having a positive effect on markers in your blood that we know are signs of your health.” Before you begin treatment at Causenta, they test your blood, then you do therapy – traditional medical treatment as well as exercise and physical therapies. Then, they test again to know what works for each patient. “We really focus on the individual and on testing as we go so that we can shift gears as needed to provide the best results for our patients.”

For more information about ampullary cancer and treatment at Causenta, schedule your complimentary 30-minute consultation today.  

About the Author

Recognized as one of the most complete non-toxic wellness clinics and alternative cancer treatment centers in the nation, Causenta offers an array of cutting edge technology, a state-of-the-art facility and personalized medical protocols not found anywhere else in the world.

There is no one-size-fits-all treatment. Instead of taking what we call the Band-Aid approach to your health and performance, we focus on discovering the ROOT CAUSE of what is holding you back.

For over 17 years, our highly experienced and trained doctors have combined traditional medicine and break-through therapies to provide patients the right treatment for even the rarest conditions.

  • Cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy somewhere else are reporting little to no side effects when they’re working alongside our oncologist.
  • We have been able to permanently treat different kinds of neuropathy in as little as one day up to a week.
  • We have seen patients that haven’t been able to walk for years, walking out of our clinic in perfect balance.
  • Radiation, chemotherapy and surgery are always the last resort to treating cancer at Causenta.

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