It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....



Cancer: Pancreatic & Liver Message Board
Post New Thread   Closed Thread
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 06-05-2008, 09:03 PM   #1
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,468
k2626 HB User
Unhappy Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

Hi all, as mentioned in my last post...my father was recently diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer, it is also in his liver and I believe his bones.

I really need feedback on what to expect. I am a total wreck, my mother passed when I was young, hence my father brought me up. He is the only parent I have known. I live in CA, he lives in AZ. I plan on going out every other weekend or at least every 3rd for a long weekend. My sister lives in AZ, and my brother just moved there to be with my dad.

My dad has been depressed (even right before his diagnosis) though he claim he does not know why, I think he is depressed over feeling sick. He said he cannot concentrate on anything and generally is weak, and has lost weight. He is not in horrible pain, but does has stomach pains. Its so hard to see him this way, he has always been the "life of the party", Mr Jokester. This breaks my heart.

The doctor said originally a yr at best. We get his liver biopsy results tomorrow but I dont know if that will give us a more definative time line. How do I know how much time he has?

I am soooo devasted by this and just want to wake up from this nightmare

Thanks for any feedback that you can give me

Last edited by k2626; 06-05-2008 at 09:48 PM.

 
Old 06-05-2008, 09:31 PM   #2
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Calif, USA
Posts: 1,530
Mel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

Hi again. Is your dad having chemo? Have you contacted Pancan? They can offer so much for you. Is he taking any enzymes to help keep his weight on? Sometimes, the stomach pains eliminate any desire to eat.
The time frame the dr gives isn't always accurate. So much depends on how fast the cancer grows, if your dad is having chemo and if he is getting nutrients. My own personal opinion is if it were me I would not want to suffer and would probably throw in the towel. However, it isn't my life on the line. I was surprised my girlfriend fought all the way up to the end so the will to survive sometimes adds time.

 
Sponsors Lightbulb
   
Old 06-05-2008, 09:47 PM   #3
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,468
k2626 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

Hi again, thanks for all of your continued feedback. He is not on chemo. There is no treatable method as you know, and the chemo supposadly will help with pain. However, I heard chemo can make people feel worse? He meets with the oncologist tomorrow. I also remember the oncologist said something about zapping his nerves. Do you know anything about either method? I just dont want him to be in pain. Yes, he gets really depressed when its time to eat. Gosh, thinking back for a month or so my dad said food had no taste. Wonder if that was the cancer as he as always been a big foodie!

I have not contacted pancan,but did just find their site earlier.

What kind of enzymes will help him? I will def. look into this.

He def. has lost his zest for life. I dont think he even wants us around him because he keeps saying nobody wants to be around someone who is sick and mopeing around. Ugh, it just doesnt seem like my dad, its so sad.

Does cancer get in the brain...meaning the fact that he cant concentrate does that have to do with the cancer?

What should I expect, when do I know the end is near?

Thanks so much for your feedback, you really have been a help

 
Old 06-06-2008, 07:44 PM   #4
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Calif, USA
Posts: 1,530
Mel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

Veteran
(female)


Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 370 Re: Feedback needed reancreatic cancer

The chemo sometimes can hold the cancer at bay and actually can shrink the tumors. If the cancer is wrapped around a vein, then sometimes the chemo helps shrink the tumor and help with the pain. Chemo, of course, has its own issues. I am really talking out of my league though as my experience is only with my girlfriend, listening to her doctors at USC and reading the message boards. The chemo did make her feel bad. She had sores for awhile, her hair fell out, she was tired and it lowered her blood count. It probably bought her some time and it was something she wanted and had hope she could get the cancer tumors reduced for surgery. She had alot of fatigue. How much was from the cancer or the chemo? She thought it was the chemo. Her week off from chemo, she felt better. She also said food didn't taste good. She lost interest. Foods high in fat would increase pain. I made my zuccini bread specialty and she ate one bite. She survived mostly on Ensure and melons. Is your dad drinking Ensure? It has nutrients he needs. The dr will advise you about the enzymes, also the message board people talk about it. I don't know anything about zapping nerves unless the dr is talking about a nerve block to stop pain. It is a painful cancer. Depression is common. I was reading some people take ritalin or antidepressants. Again, something to discuss with dr.
My girlfriend put on a good show. Her line was "it is what it is" She told me the worst thing in the world was telling her husband and me she had cancer because she knew it would devastate us. She was so brave and so strong. Toward the end, she no longer wanted people over, just her family and me. She never talked to me about after she was gone, but she gave me my birthday present early because she said she didn't know if she would still be here. I can't believe she even had thought about my birthday. She slept more and became very quiet. Once in awhile she would snap at us, something she would never, never do prior to this nasty disease. The last few days she didn't talk, no longer responded and only sipped liquids. She passed away 4 days after my birthday.
The cancer can go into the brain but also the build-up of toxins can affect the thinking. It didn't seem like my girlfriend either and the whole thing was just hard to believe. I would just sit with her while she stared at the tv. Her husband and daughter-in-law were amazing providing around the clock care.
Have you called Hopsice? There are so many things going on around you and with you. I never even knew where the pancreas was until this cancer hit close. Really calling Pancan and hooking up with others will help you. You must be feeling so alone, in shock and scared. I am sorry you are all going through this. I will say this though. I lost my sister 4 years ago in a drowning accident. I never got to say goodbye or the things I wish I had. I was there when my friend moved on and I got to say goodbye. I also had time to tell her the things I wanted to and how I loved her friendship for my entire life. Share good memories with your dad. Talk about your camping trips or whatever you did. Joke about things. There will be tears but it will help later. I am so glad I took alot of pictures as they are even more precious now There's alot of support out there. Grab it. hugs Mel


What kind of enzymes will help him? I will def. look into this.

He def. has lost his zest for life. I dont think he even wants us around him because he keeps saying nobody wants to be around someone who is sick and mopeing around. Ugh, it just doesnt seem like my dad, its so sad.

Does cancer get in the brain...meaning the fact that he cant concentrate does that have to do with the cancer?

What should I expect, when do I know the end is near?

 
Old 06-09-2008, 04:58 PM   #5
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,468
k2626 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

Thanks again for all of your feedback. We got the enzymes today and my dad started his chemo today, it is by IV drip. Hopefully he feels okay from it. He is eating, for now which is good. He has other health issues which makes this more tricky. Diabetes, (apparently this is a red flag of pancreatic cancer when diagnosed in relativley healthy people) and A fib, which is an irregular heartbeat. The tricky thing w the afib is that part of his heart chamber could break off and give him a stroke or heart attack, yet putting him back on the medication for this or shocking his heart again outweighs the risk. So we have all sorts of worries. We now need to schedule a stint surgery, he has turned yellow from jaundice and apparently if not fixed he will get really itchy.

His moods change its odd. One day he is relativly okay w little depression, the next pretty down and very tired-just very unpredictable.

Thanks again for all of your feedback...

 
Old 06-09-2008, 10:39 PM   #6
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Calif, USA
Posts: 1,530
Mel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

It sounds like your dad is being well taken care of. You may find he gets very tired on his second week of chemo. My friend had two weeks on, one off and she would get very weak and then bounce back during her off week.
Your dad having jaundice because of the bile building up can affect his moods too. I read something about the toxins being the cause. If he is having alot of chemo ask about the port. Over time the veins collapse and it can be painful so many people opt for the port.
The diabetes goes along with it. The pancreas stops working properly and the insulin levels are affected. I read too high fat is really hard to digest. Did the dr say anything about him drinking Ensure to get nutrients in him?
Are you driving back and forth between Arizona and Calif? I hope you live close to the border with the cost of gas.

 
Old 06-10-2008, 07:43 PM   #7
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,468
k2626 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

Hi Mel. He is on an IV drip and it takes about 45 min, the doctor said it should not make him feel ill as it is very "light" chemo. However, this morning he was VERY tired, the most tired I have seen him. I told him I was sure it is due to the chemo, within 30 min of spending time with him his mood started to uplift as did his energy. He goes once a week for three weeks, then one week off. I hope his body responds to the chemo.

I think some of his tiredness is phsychological....I notice on days he gets out of the house and walks around his is more energetic then when he is inside laying around. My family and I spending time with him really helps too. My brother and I spent at least 7 hrs a day with him this past week, only leaving when he napped or went to bed.

He went in for his stint consult today, I was on my way to the airport when he went in. I am so fearful of him getting so itchy from the jaundice. It is very interesting that the jaundice could effect his mood.

I live in San Francisco and my Dad in Scottsdale AZ so I have to fly back and forth. My plan is to try to be out there every other weekend. It is difficult for me to be here in SF while he is in AZ, I just want to be with him all the time, but I cant. Thakfully my brother moved there and my sister is there to help when she can.

Thanks again for all of your feedback, it really has been a nice little support for me- You are so very kind!

Last edited by k2626; 06-10-2008 at 07:54 PM.

 
Old 06-10-2008, 09:21 PM   #8
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Calif, USA
Posts: 1,530
Mel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

Is there a reason they have your dad on a light dose of chemo? Is he on a clinical trial? I know with my girlfriend they had her on several "cocktails" to sock it to the cancer. She also took oral pills.
When they put in the stent or drain the bile from your dad's liver, it will help the jaundice. When are they planning on doing it? My girlfriend got so dark and her eyes were yellow.
My girlfriend moved to Scottsdale a few years back. Glad you are flying as that is a long jaunt and she lived here in Southern Calif. I am glad my little doses of information help. This is a really ugly cancer and I feel for the battle you all are going through.
I miss my friend so much. We grew up riding horses together and stayed close for over 41 years. I still can't believe she got sick. Now, that she is gone, I don't know why I still read all the pancreatic cancer boards, but I do. Maybe it helps me get through the grieving helping someone else, as others helped me. I feel for you

 
Old 06-10-2008, 10:26 PM   #9
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,468
k2626 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

You are definately helping me and I appreciate it. I still cant believe this is happening, I just want to wake up from this nightmare. It is so hard to see someone you love so much in pain, and sad....it breaks my heart.

My dad is on a light form of chemo (per the doctor) since it is only for pain management. He is not on any pills that help sock the cancer, I wonder why....The doctor wants to wait to see how the chemo goes before he refers him to doctors that do clinical trials. I am glad my dad is open to doing this. Any hope that he has helps. I am such a believer that mind set and the will to live has such an impact on this. If has a will to live it will help with his overall attitude, which is so important. I can understand why he would not want to leave his apartment and walk around but notice such a difference in his energy and mood when he forces himself to get out,even if it is for a little walk around his apartment.

My dads stent consult was today and I was at the airport. I am not sure when they will be doing it yet. I am thinking next week. Wonder how long it will take? My dad's big fear is getting something put down his throat, he has such a fear of choking that he has never been able to swallow pills well. I am thinking he will be in a twilight sleep for this though.

When did your friend start really losing her strength, how long afer the diagnosis?

Not sure if I told you but after my dads oncologist appt on Friday (where they went over the biopsy) they gave him 2 to 4 months to live with chemo buying him a couple more months if it works.....his original diagnosis was at best a year.

Thanks again for your input, your friend was lucky to have such a support from you!

Last edited by k2626; 06-10-2008 at 10:29 PM.

 
Old 06-13-2008, 10:42 PM   #10
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Calif, USA
Posts: 1,530
Mel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

It is like a bad dream. I still can't believe this cancer took away my best friend. I was lucky to have her. I would fall apart and she would calmly say "it is what it is". It was difficult. SHe was always so strong and healthy and to see her go through this was heartbreaking.
I asked a dr friend of mine who lives in Scottdale. It was difficult for him to answer my question because he knows nothing about your dad's case but if you are seeking to make your dad comfortable, then the Mayo Clinic or the Scottsdale Cancer Clinic. If you want to be very aggressive or if your dad could be a candidate for surgery, then LA or San Francisco.
My girlfriend was put out while drains were put in to relieve the bile buildup. I guess she had so many blockages, stents wouldn't do it. It took about an hour.

 
Old 06-15-2008, 08:59 PM   #11
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,468
k2626 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

Thanks so much Mel....

Gosh, I wish my dad were a candidate for surgery, but the cancer has already spread to his liver and I think bones.

 
Old 06-16-2008, 07:21 PM   #12
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Calif, USA
Posts: 1,530
Mel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB UserMel52 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

I think my friend was on the same chemo plus pills. She also had sores in her mouth and a rash. I read on message boards the rash means the chemo is working. I don't know if it bought her some time or not. Hopefully your dad will feel somewhat better after the stent. Has anything been said about a port for the chemo? Sometimes the veins start collapsing and that means being poked over and over. It might be a good time? to inquire about one. Maybe it could be put in at the same time as the stent
I know what you mean about the last Father's Day. I think the same thing about my parents for each birthday and holiday. You just never know. They have their health issues. Just keep making new memories so you have something to look back to. I had my hubby take a picture of my girlfriend and me the last time she came up to my house to go shopping. Within weeks she could no longer drive nor shop. I like to look at that picture as it was a good day.
My sister drowned 4 years ago and I didn't get to say goodbye, leaving no closure. Cherish the time with your dad. I feel so bad for you. It is tough.
Did you check into the Ensure drink for him if he starts balking at eating?

 
Old 06-17-2008, 04:24 PM   #13
Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: connecticut
Posts: 81
Marie1973 HB User
Re: Feedback needed re:pancreatic cancer

[QUOTE=k2626;3597735] Gosh, thinking back for a month or so my dad said food had no taste. Wonder if that was the cancer as he as always been a big foodie!



I too wonder this as my dad has been saying that the food has no taste.
I always thought it was the chemo that took the taste away-not the cancer itself.
But my dad has never had chemo.

 
Closed Thread

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Board Replies Last Post
Pancreatic Cancer? marky1956 Cancer: Pancreatic & Liver 8 09-07-2010 07:00 AM
Pancreatic Cancer Final Stages khug Cancer: Pancreatic & Liver 16 08-30-2010 04:42 AM
pancreatic cancer and blood clots?? desperate girl Cancer: Pancreatic & Liver 1 01-13-2009 11:52 AM
pancreatic cancer end stage what to expect slavkadraskovic Cancer: Pancreatic & Liver 5 12-03-2008 10:41 PM
Re: pancreatic cancer kiwikid Cancer: Pancreatic & Liver 0 08-01-2008 11:54 PM

Tags
pancreatic cancer



Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Join Our Newsletter

Stay healthy through tips curated by our health experts.

Whoops,

There was a problem adding your email Try again

Thank You

Your email has been added








TOP THANKED CONTRIBUTORS



Mel52 (6), mboose (2), Asym (2), ladybud (2), Chele60 (2), Flabbergasted (2), MaCxI (1), meandmyman (1), resolution09 (1), vbeiter (1)

Site Wide Totals

teteri66 (1180), MSJayhawk (1006), Apollo123 (906), Titchou (852), janewhite1 (823), Gabriel (759), ladybud (755), midwest1 (669), sammy64 (668), BlueSkies14 (607)



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:55 PM.



Site owned and operated by HealthBoards.comô
Terms of Use © 1998-2014 HealthBoards.comô All rights reserved.
Do not copy or redistribute in any form!