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Cancer: Lung Message Board
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Old 11-18-2003, 05:25 AM   #1
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How long- Can anyone give me an idea?

Hi,

My Father in Law was diagnosed with lung cancer just over two years ago when he was 78. (sorry, I don't know which kind of lung cancer). They told him his options were radiation or chemo as the cancer was wrapped around his heart and in his lung. They didn't think they could get it out plus they didn't think he would survive surgery. He did radiation and was doing well. He went on oxygen about a year ago and and he was not too bad until about 2 months ago. He started getting weaker and last week they put him into the hospital as he cannot stand up any more at all by himself and is very weak. The cancer has spread to his liver and he is very jaundiced and it's not clearing up. Doctor told him there is nothing they can do. He barely eats anything, maybe a bite or two of mashed potatoes...that's it for the day if that much at all. He does manage to get a bit of juice in him but that's it. He is very weak and has a very hard time breathing and talking although he knows exactly what's going on, sharp as a tack. It is breaking my heart to see him like this. I have never cried so much in my life as this man is like a father to me.

What I wanted to ask is does anyone have any idea how long? He is not on an IV for fluids or food...I am assuming that this is because of a "do not resuscitate" request from him. Can anybody please tell me what to expect now that it has gone to his liver? Any information you can give me would be helpful...I just don't know where to turn as my husband is having such a hard time dealing with this and I want to be as prepared as I can and know what to expect so that I can be calm for him.

Willow

 
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Old 11-18-2003, 02:19 PM   #2
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i am so sorry about your father in law- get in touch with a local hospice, explain the situation and ask them to have their nurse talk to you about what to expect, they are very very good about that. it should not matter that you are using their services or not. good luck

 
Old 11-19-2003, 08:38 AM   #3
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Willow,
Did your father-in law do chemo and radiation? I am glad to hear he has done so well, and sorry to hear he is know struggling. Cherrish every moment with him and enjoy the time you have left. I just wanted to let you know that your father in law is an inspiration to me and my family as my mom is going thru the same thing--sounds like same areas of cancer and the doctors only gave her 6 months IF she chose to do nothing and a 15% life expansion if she chose chemo and radiation--which she has---and so far she is doing really well! 15% of 6 months is not very long, but with you FIL he has went 2 years---maybe mom Mom would be as lucky and we could cherrish even more with her. May god bless you and your family i these trying times>

 
Old 11-20-2003, 11:21 AM   #4
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Re: How long- Can anyone give me an idea?

Willow Star,

I would contact your local hospice inn. My dad is in your father in laws shoes. It is so very sad, my dad is only 60 and has been diagnosed less than two years. Doc's tell us he has about a month left. We rely heavly on hospice nurses to help us through this all. Any questions you have they will be able to answer. My heart goes out to you and your family, I know exactly what you are going through. Cherish these days with your father in law, hug him and tell him how much you love him daily.

My thoughts and prayers are with you...
K.

 
Old 11-20-2003, 03:44 PM   #5
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Re: How long- Can anyone give me an idea?

Hi Everyone,

Althea and Lingstar - Thank you for the advice on the hospice. I guess I didn't think of that since I'm pretty sure my Father in Law will not make it out of the hospital. I will definitely look them up and see what they can tell me. The links were very helpful too.

Chazzy - My FIL opted for the radiation only since where the tumour was (in lung and wrapped around his heart) made surgery very iffy along with his age at the time (78). He may not have recuperated too well. Also the doc understandably could make no guarantees that it would help and his quality of life may have been drastically reduced because of the surgery. It's been almost 2 and a half years since he was diagnosed so I am very thankful for the extra time we had but it still doesn't make it any easier as I'm sure you all know. I sincerely hope that the chemo and radiation can give you and your mother that extra time. It's a gift from God.

Medphoto - I know just how you feel. We were told this Monday that it was a matter of days to possibly a few weeks but I feel he is getting worse very quickly. Both DH and I are spending all our time with him as I have no idea how much time there is left. I am doing exactly what you have suggested...telling him exactly how I feel about him, how thankful I am that he has been here for me and how much he means to me. God it's just so hard. Especially trying to keep myself under control and be strong for DH cause I know he is so scared, he has told me he is. He tries to be brave but I know he wants to run out of there screaming.

My heart truly goes out to all of you and I will say a prayer for everyone. Thank you for taking the time to write to me. It's so hard to go through this but at least there are people out there who understand exactly what I am going through. You are all angels...

Willow

 
Old 11-22-2003, 10:28 AM   #6
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Re: How long- Can anyone give me an idea?

Hi Everyone...

Just wanted to let you all know that my Father in law passed away this morning. I'm sure he is at peace now. Thank you for all your kind words and prayers. I wish the best for all of you.

Willow

 
Old 11-24-2003, 05:22 AM   #7
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Re: How long- Can anyone give me an idea?

Willow,

I am so sorry to hear of your loss. Your father in law is at peace now and he is resting more comfortably now in a much better place. My thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. I think that it's much harder especially around the holidays when we are usually celebrating to have such a great loss. Peace and love....K.

 
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