Janet Williams

Pancreatic Cancer Patient Stories

Janet Williams

Janet Williams and her husband, Hal, also a Fox Chase patient. Read Hal's story.

Janet Williams absolutely loves being a grandmother. In her own words she explained, "I love my grandkids to pieces." Family has always been important to Janet, married for 51 years and the mother of 3 children and 5 grandchildren.

Several years ago, Janet watched her father's battle with pancreatic cancer, a fight he eventually lost. When Janet began to see the same symptoms appear in herself - fatigue, jaundice, blood in her urine and a gnawing pain inside - she was scared.

"I decided that I deserved the best. So I went to Fox Chase Cancer Center."

"I went to my doctor who ordered a blood test. With the results, he diagnosed me with pancreatic cancer. He predicted I had 8 - 12 months to live," Janet recalled. "I didn't want to lose my family. They are too important to me. I decided that I deserved the best. So I went to Fox Chase Cancer Center."

At the age of 65, Janet had her first appointment with Dr. James C. Watson, oncologic surgeon at Fox Chase. "At that point, I was willing to try anything," explained Janet. Dr. Watson performed a "Whipple" procedure on Janet, who also had cancer in her large bile duct. This procedure can selectively be performed on patients with pancreatic cancer. It involves removing the head of the pancreas, some of the small intestine and a portion of the bile duct. Dr. Watson then rebuilt Janet's digestive tract.

"Dr. Watson saved my life. I can't say enough about him. He is so skillful, yet so kind."

"Dr. Watson saved my life. I can't say enough about him. He is so skillful, yet so kind," said Janet. "The nurses were terrific, too."

"Fox Chase is really different than other hospitals. Everyone is so positive and cheerful."

"Fox Chase is really different than other hospitals. Everyone is so positive and cheerful," explained Janet. "The highlight of my stay was meeting James, my patient escort. He sang to me every day. It certainly lifted my mood. Now, when I see him during my visits, he always gives me a big hug. It's like family."

"Anytime we can make a donation, we send it to Fox Chase. They are my favorite cause."

Janet and her husband, Hallock, a psychiatrist, are very grateful for their health. Hallock was treated at Fox Chase for prostate cancer and skin cancer. "Anytime we can make a donation, we send it to Fox Chase. They are my favorite cause," Janet said.

"If someone doesn't think they have any hope, have them call me!"

In addition to the staff at Fox Chase, Janet attributes her success to "keeping a positive attitude, which helps you recover faster. If someone doesn't think they have any hope, have them call me!"