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Old 11-12-2005, 06:57 AM   #1
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Rhiannon163 HB User
Unhappy New here - worried daughter

Hi everyone,
My mom was just admitted to the hospital this am with severe dehydration from vomiting and diarhea. She's in her third week of radiation and has had 4 days of chemo. She has stage 2 anal cancer. She was supposed to have 6 weeks of radiation, 5x a week, with 4 days of chemo at the beginning and 4 days at the end. I know the doc said it's not uncommon to have to be admitted to the hospital during treatment, but I'm still so worried. Could this kill her? Will they continue her treatment even though it's making her so ill? Even the very expensive anti nausea drug they gave her didn't stop the nausea. I am so worried. And of course, I have a miserable chest cold right now, so I don't dare go anywhere near her. I'm afraid she might decide to stop the treatment and just take her chances.

 
Old 11-12-2005, 08:14 AM   #2
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gocatsgo HB User
Re: New here - worried daughter

Hi,

Sorry to hear of your situation. I would imagine that they might give her a break from chemo (happened to me) and/or radiation. After a break they may be able to re-hook her to the chemo at a lower dose and with some anti-diarrhea drugs. (That worked for me. I still had some diarrhea and nausea but it was managable enough - though it is no picnic.) I would encourage her not to give up. Six weeks of Hell is totally worth it...I promise it will get better post-treatment. I know that feeling of sitting on the toilet feeling so sick and saying to yourself "I can't do this!" Take it one day at a time and it DOES get better.

Good luck...Keep us posted,
Gocatsgo

Last edited by gocatsgo; 11-12-2005 at 08:15 AM.

 
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Old 11-12-2005, 09:57 AM   #3
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jaydees HB User
Re: New here - worried daughter

I too had my chemo suspended once. It was due to low white cell counts. They monitored white, red and platelet counts as well as a few other blood constituents. I was given a blood test every day while on chemo and was not administered the chemo until the results came back each day.

I was lucky and only had nausea twice in the 6 months of chemo(5 weeks of radiation included)and diarrhea was controlled when it flared up, by 4 or 5 Immodium tablets.

Your Mom will feel better with IV saline restoring her water and electrolytes, they will make her less dizzy and less fatigued. Anti-nausea drugs only work to certain degree. Now that she is off the chemo for a while she should slowly return to normal although near the end of the radiation she will experience "sunburn" on the rear end. Keeping that area dry helps, and after the radiation is over a steroid cream such as polysoprin speeds healing.

 
Old 11-12-2005, 10:21 AM   #4
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Re: New here - worried daughter

I am sorry to hear about your mum. You must be feeling pretty awful too with a bad cold and you are right not to go too near her. Her immune system is bound to be low at the moment. The doctors will not give her treatment if they consider her to be too ill but jaydees is so right when he says that the saline treatment will make her feel much better. Dehydration can make you feel terrible.

Towards the end of my husband's radiotherapy treatment, he was admitted to hospital three times but he was able to continue and complete the treatment. He felt absolutely awful and looked it too! But, not long after completing the radiotherapy/chemotherapy he started to pick up and, even though he was still getting chemotherapy once a week, he managed to return to work part time. It seemed incredible at the time that he could make such a recovery but he did. I expect your mum will be the same. Her stage is 2 which is much better than 3c, which is what my husband had.

Take care of that cold ....you are probably run down with the stress and must look after yourself too.
__________________
Husband dx July 2003, advanced rectal cancer stage 111C; myself dx July 2006 indolent lymphoma; husband dx February 2010, stage 2 prostate cancer.

 
Old 11-14-2005, 07:11 AM   #5
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Rhiannon163 HB User
Re: New here - worried daughter

Thanks for the responses. She's now on oxygen, she has fluid in her lungs. Both her blood pressure and her white cell counts are very low. We won't know much more until we meet with her oncologist today.

Now I have another question for all of you. I'm not even sure it's ok to talk about this here, but I need opinions. How many of you smoked during chemo? Did it help? Should I get some for my Mom? Obviously it wouldn't be until she's released, but I hate seeing her suffer so much. A few people have suggested this, and I know Melissa Etheridge swore by it during her treatment.

 
Old 11-14-2005, 07:42 AM   #6
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ktee_uk HB User
Re: New here - worried daughter

Dear Rhiannon163

Sorry to hear about your mums poor health. Its great to hear you are trying to take such good care of her.

Regarding the ciggies (tobacco or otherwise) ....... I personally would not volunteer to get them for her but if she were to ask for them then I would not say no. The only thing I would say is that you need to talk to her docs if she does smoke, continues to smoke or starts up smoking from being a non-smoker as it can sometimes alter results of various blood tests and how she responds to treatments/drugs/etc.

Think about it carefully though as you may be undoing any good that the doctors have been doing for her. Also, there is abundant evidence in a variety of cancers (including lung, breast, colon, prostate, cervix, kidney, head and neck cancer and melanoma) that never-smokers or ex-smokers have a better chance of longer survival than continuing smokers.

I was in a similar situation with my mum ..... she had smoked for over 60 years and had a really hard time giving them up. The last 6 to 12 months of her life were "I think" cigarette free because she stopped having a smokers cough but i doubt very much if her lungs would have allowed her to inhale anyway as she also had fluid on her lungs.

i wish you and your mum well
ktee

Last edited by ktee_uk; 11-14-2005 at 07:50 AM. Reason: additional info

 
Old 11-14-2005, 07:58 AM   #7
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Rhiannon163 HB User
Re: New here - worried daughter

Actually, I wasn't referring to cigs. She hasn't smoked anything in her entire 69 years. I was being cryptic because I wasn't sure what the rules were here for talking about things that are illegal. I don't give a flying hoot about the law if I can help my mom from feeling like she wants to give up and die. I'm not even entirely sure she would go for it, but I'm guessing she'd do anything to make the nausea stop.

 
Old 11-14-2005, 11:34 AM   #8
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jimmielegs HB User
Re: New here - worried daughter

I'm not sure of the rules, either, but I do understand what you are talking about. It's a tough call because you doc will probably not recommend something illegal - but if you think he/she is open to at least hearing your question, certainly ask about it.

I have read that many chemo patients find relief from smoking weed, especially as it seems to reduce nausea and actually give the patient an appetite. I know you want to ease your mom's pain. I know you want the best for her. Can you talk to her about this?

 
Old 11-14-2005, 07:26 PM   #9
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jaydees HB User
Re: New here - worried daughter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhiannon163
Actually, I wasn't referring to cigs. She hasn't smoked anything in her entire 69 years. I was being cryptic because I wasn't sure what the rules were here for talking about things that are illegal. I don't give a flying hoot about the law if I can help my mom from feeling like she wants to give up and die. I'm not even entirely sure she would go for it, but I'm guessing she'd do anything to make the nausea stop.

I thought about this the first time I read your original post.

Many say that it helps with the nausea, personaly it actually made me dizzy way back when I used to partake of it recreationally.

That said, if she is to try it I would suggest mixing it with chicken broth or making tea with it. Smoke in the lungs is never good for the body no matter what the source.

,,,, and of course there are the legal implications, if you get in trouble you may not be able to help her.

 
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