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Cancer: Lung Message Board
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Old 01-22-2004, 12:18 PM   #1
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ChazzyBear HB User
need answers on signs

my mom has moved to stage 4 lung cancer back in december. We have been told she had about 6 weeks left, then we where told that she would not be here to see Valentines day. Can anyone tell me what to look for.... what kind of symptoms do we watch for to know that things are getting close? What does it mean when your feet start turning --like a bruising color???? Is it normal for her to have a good week or day then a week of hell and then a week of heaven? Is there body odor associated with cancer? Is it really true people turn "grey" before they die? When the cancer moves to your brain, what are some signs that you know that it has reached the brain? What does it mean when your cathider has very "rusty" dark urine? Sorry for so many questions, but I am sure that there is someone here who can help me.
WE know that Mom will not be on earth long, but are just searching on things to know it is getting near as we have family 1200 miles away that would like to be here when it is time if at all possible, but can not afford to be here for weeks.
If anyone can give us some kind of info on these questions we would be greatly appreciated.
May God Bless Each and everyone of you!
Thanks for all your help!
Chaz

 
Old 01-22-2004, 09:04 PM   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2003
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butterflytrans HB Userbutterflytrans HB User
Re: need answers on signs

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChazzyBear
my mom has moved to stage 4 lung cancer back in december. We have been told she had about 6 weeks left, then we where told that she would not be here to see Valentines day. Can anyone tell me what to look for.... what kind of symptoms do we watch for to know that things are getting close?
Things like increasing pain, increasing shortness of breath, loss of consciousness for long periods of time, seizures (if the cancers spreads to the brain), increasing weakness, stopping eating food...etc. etc. etc. There's no specific thing that you can watch for, but in general, it's just a gradual deterioration.
Quote:
What does it mean when your feet start turning --like a bruising color????
This is probably not necessarily related to the cancer, but it could be due to a clot, or just poor circulation.
Quote:
Is it normal for her to have a good week or day then a week of hell and then a week of heaven?
Yes, cancer patients often have fluctuating courses in their illnesses, but overall, if they have terminal cancer, it's a gradual decline over time. There will still be good days, but they will be fewer and more far between as the disease progresses.
Quote:
Is there body odor associated with cancer?
Yes...there is, but it's hard to explain. You kinda have to be on wards with sick people to know what the smell is like. Maybe it's just the smell of the hospital itself, but I've noticed a certain smell that goes along with some very sick cancer patients.
Quote:
Is it really true people turn "grey" before they die?
Not necessarily...the grey appearance often comes some time after death.
Quote:
When the cancer moves to your brain, what are some signs that you know that it has reached the brain?
Signs can include seizures, weakness on one side of the body, confusion, headaches, problems with vision....i..e the same types of symptoms you can get with a stroke.
Quote:
What does it mean when your cathider has very "rusty" dark urine?
If the catheter has very dark urine, it can mean a lot of things. It can mean the urine is very concentrated...it could mean that there is blood in it, it can mean that there is a lot of bilirubin in it due to liver problems etc....usually, in a hospital, it means the person's urine is very concentrated due to dehydration (i.e. the kidneys are working hard to conserve water)

 
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Old 01-23-2004, 06:15 AM   #3
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mephoto HB User
Re: need answers on signs

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChazzyBear
my mom has moved to stage 4 lung cancer back in december. We have been told she had about 6 weeks left, then we where told that she would not be here to see Valentines day. Can anyone tell me what to look for.... what kind of symptoms do we watch for to know that things are getting close? What does it mean when your feet start turning --like a bruising color???? Is it normal for her to have a good week or day then a week of hell and then a week of heaven? Is there body odor associated with cancer? Is it really true people turn "grey" before they die? When the cancer moves to your brain, what are some signs that you know that it has reached the brain? What does it mean when your cathider has very "rusty" dark urine? Sorry for so many questions, but I am sure that there is someone here who can help me.
WE know that Mom will not be on earth long, but are just searching on things to know it is getting near as we have family 1200 miles away that would like to be here when it is time if at all possible, but can not afford to be here for weeks.
If anyone can give us some kind of info on these questions we would be greatly appreciated.
May God Bless Each and everyone of you!
Thanks for all your help!
Chaz
Hi ChazzyBear,

I'm so sorry to hear of your mom's decline. As far as the last weeks, I know my dad went quickly. I know everyone is different, but I can tell my dad's story. He was admitted to the hospice unit of our hospital on a Tuesday morning. I got there when he arrived at 10am and he was 'dad'. He knew me, he was talking, he was eating pudding, he was 'dad'. Yes he was in pain and it was getting worse but he was concious and aware. We talked for a while and I remember him telling me that he didn't know what was going to happen. He thinks that this is it. I told him he was crazy, he's not going to leave just yet. Anyway, as the afternoon went on, I noticed dad just sleeping more, he was comfortable. That evening we got a call from the hospice nurse, dad fell out of bed Tuesday night, he tried to get up to go to the bathroom and he fell. The nurses had to put a restraint on him till we got there because he kept wanting to get up. Mom arrived Wednesday morning and I arrived Wednesday at 2pm. When I walked into the room dad was sitting in a chair, sweating and sleeping. My mom and sister were in tears. They just spoke with dad's doctor and they gave dad 2 hours to a day to live. I could tell the change in him just from the day before. His color changed, he stopped eating, the colors of his fingers and toes were pale at that time. As he sat sleeping in his chair we held him, we talked to him, we kissed him and we never let go of his hands. A few hours later dad woke up and he wanted to go back in his bed, the nurses help us help him to his bed, dad never went back to sleep after that he was awake and very fidgidty, like he was fighting death with everything he had. He was awake and concious but he couldn't speak well, he would motion for my mom, he would want her to come closer to him and he would kiss her on the cheek. Right there I knew, it would be soon. He was saying goodbye. All through Wednesday night my mom, sister, brother and I stayed with him. We took turns holding his hands while the other's would get some sleep. He was still very fidigity and jerkey, he wouldn't rest, at about 6am Thursday (Thanksgiving) morning dad just took a huge gasp for air. He held it in for a while and then let it out, the nurse came in and said dad was unresponisve, he was still with us but unresponsive. She said it would be any minute now. I noticed his toes and fingers had a blueish tinge, his color, well there was none in his face, it looked grey, he was breathing slower, his heart was beating fast, but he was sleeping so peacefully. We talked to him and told him to go to heaven now it's OK we will all be OK, he needs to rest in heaven now. At 6:30am dad took his last breath. We spend the next hour with him in his room mourning. We all cried and it hurt us to see him not responding but he was so peaceful, he was sleeping in heaven now. He had no more pain he is now flying with the angles. It's been 2 months since dad passed away and I feel him with me daily. I know he hasn't gone far. As long as my heart is still beating, he will be a part of every beat.

Like I said this was my dad's story, everyone is different, you will make it through. I didn't think I could ever do this but I did and I am so thankful I was able to be a part of dad's journey to heaven. Please stay strong, the next couple of hours/days/weeks will be hard but you will get through. My thoughts and prayers are with you chazzy...
K.

 
Old 01-23-2004, 01:05 PM   #4
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: ohio
Posts: 49
ChazzyBear HB User
Re: need answers on signs

Butterfly and Medphoto,
Thank you so much for your quick responce to my post. I have been getting on the boards since September when Mom was diagnosed with lung cancer and I have been helped with all my questions and concerns. Sorry to hear about your losses and at the same time glad to hear that there are also gains in this sad times of our lives also. W e gain wonderful memories that we would have missed out on if there was a car accident, we gain friendships with those who has or will go thru what we are or have, and we gain angels to be with us each day till we one day will meet again. As I read your shared experiances tears run down my face as I can relate to your feelings. It is so nice to know other people who can "REALLY" know what we are going thru!THANKS AGAIN FOR ALL YOUR HELP!
Hope you both are very blessed with many great memories of your loved ones.
Chazzy

 
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