hi everyone.im new to this forum.my dad had trouble eating,he said it seemed as though it felt like food would get stuck in his throat.he had lost a lot of weight but he thought it was due to his new style of eating habits.when he was at my house for thanksgiving he didnt eat much.when we got together at christmas,and he spent most of the time in the bathroom vomiting.he looked like a different person because of the weight loss and it was at that point i was scared and afraid of what news was down the road.he had an appointment for a CT scan the following week which revealed a tumor in his esophogus.it was later revealed where spots were seen on his liver as well as his lymphnoids (please excuse my spelling errors).the main part of this tumor is where the esophogus meets the stomach,its in both places.as a precaution he had a feeding tube put in 4 days ago and he is having problems with mucous,and is in a lot of pain.we met with his oncologist to discuss chemo treatment which begins next week once every other week,there is this other drug which he needs as well which i believe is a 1 time thing where he has this drip for 48 hours has to wear this thing on his side and a nurse will turn this off after 48 hours.im very concerned.its been 4 days since the feeding tube installation and hasnt met with a nutrionist to begin the feedings.2 days ago he had blood work done which revealed he is anemic and dehydrated.im praying that once these chemo treatments start that it will shrink the tumor and allow him to at least eat.he needs to put weight back on and get some of his strength back.there are so many questions one of which i asked my dad why something wasnt discovered earlier?he said he didnt know and in fact he had a complete physical in september,but didnt tell the doctor he was experiencing acid reflux either.looking back now it seems as though back in april of last year he ran into a problem while eating a piece of steak,it seemed as though it got stuck but he didnt think anything of it.he had a PET scan on friday and we wont know the results until monday or tuesday.is there anyone else on this board who is or has experienced anything similar?its my dad's 70th birthday today,looks like the big bash is put on hold until the cancer is in remission.thanks everyone.
Can your dad eat/drink anything? If so, have him try Boost or Ensure which are nutritional shakes you can get at a drug store (and some grocery stores). You are right that the nutrition is a big concern as Chemo is very tough on a strong person and can be overwhelming for someone who is weak so getting him some nutrition is very important. The feeding tube will help and is not hard to maintain at home.
When he starts Chemo he will have probably even less appetite so talk to your nutritionist about what he may be able to do (yogurt, cottage cheese, creamed soups, Boost/Ensure etc.) to keep up his strength. If he develops moth sores due to the chemo (very common), talk to your oncologist about Magic Mouthwash to make the eating and swallowing easier. (Magic Mouthwash is a prescription made up by the pharmacist of liquid antacis like Maalox with lidocaine to coat/numb his mouth and throat) It's not very expensive (we paid about $20 for a bottle) and it does help after the chemo.
Unfotunately this type of cancer is typically not found early in my experience because until you have symptons, the doctors don't know to look for it. It cannot be found simply with a blood test. Until my husband became ill, I naively thought that there were common tests to detect cancer. Unfortunately only a few cancers are found that way (prostate, breast cancer with mammogram etc.) Most are found after there are symptons which means they have progressed.
i just visited with him today and he is feeling a little better.he is able to drink but not eat.when we suggest he eat something he thinks we are forcing him to eat.hes been drinking soup,chicken broth just to name a few.i asked him that after a few treatments if tests show that your tumor has shrunk,will you be trying to eat more?he said yes,he would even go buy a steak and cook it on the grill.the problems is right now when he tries to eat ,whatever he eats gets stuck as the tumor is right where the esophagus meets the stomach and its blocking it so to speak.during the week when i was visiting he was eating eggs and had a hard time with those.tomorrow he is getting treated for dehydration via an IV,tuesday he is getting a port installed to get ready for the 1st chemo on wednesday or thursday.i did get a list of the drugs and they are as follows:
folfox,oxaliplatin,5 fluorourncial,folinic acid,and avastin.
I really have no advice but your dad's story sounds so similar to my uncle's. They just found out he has stage III esophageal cancer and it's into his stomach and lymph nodes. I'd demand more info from the nutritionist and see what they can do to help with the feeding issues. Hang in there.
My MIL died in december...cancer that had spread. She didn't want to eat either and she got so tired of the Ensure. So..I told her I was making a milkshake and I mixed 2 Ensures in with the ice cream and little milk......she loved it...........plus she was getting the ensure and didn't know it. the chemo can dehydrate you too.............MIL had to go in hospital for dehydration and they took her off the chem...she was 78....her little body couldn't take it...