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Old 07-17-2012, 04:50 PM   #1
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Questions about Cancer

My mom was diagnosed with Gallbladder Cancer January.6th 2012. She is my best friend, and mentor. I can honestly say that losing her is my biggest fear. I can recall being quite young, and having a conversation with her about death and i cried and told her she wasn't allowed to die, where she just smirked as a response. Unfortunately lately we have become rather distant, which im assuming is myself putting up a wall. When she was first diagnosed the only question was "why", but as the months go by i find myself asking so many more questions to which she doesnt have the answer to. I dont know if she is purposly not telling me(or my sister), or she genially doesnt know. I guess my first question to this forum is:
1. How informative are the doctors to their patients. Do they try to shelter them or are very straight forward?
For example, i asked the question what stage her cancer is at and she said she didnt know. Ive wanted to do research for some time, but each time i ask she doesnt seem to know. From reading forums and just trying to think as realistically as possible i feel that would be one of the first things you find out about the cancer.. I try to be patient because i was told the chemo makes her forgetful, but it seems more like she is keeping things from me.
My next concern is how she is handling her chemo, or other drugs. I am not sure the 'chemo cocktail' (i think its called?), all i know is she takes it in IV once a week. When she was in the hospital she was alright. She would dose off now and than, but she could keep up a conversation with someone and would go for walks all the time. She has been home for months now, and she has seem to go downhill extreamly. She looks.. bad.. When she stares at you, its like shes in a totally different world. Her eyes are so wide, and glossy all the time. She responds slowly to conversation and seems to have very little emotion. When i read information about beating cancer i see that the best thing to do is eat healthy and exercise.. but she can barely move. I guess my second question is:
2. Is this normal? Or is this her body failing or admitting defeat.
Part of me thinks it could be the morphine doing this to her. but im not a doctor

Alot of my confusion comes from the actual cancer itself.. Gallbladder Cancer.. There doesnt seem to be too much information on the internet about it. I have found a few forums with survivors, but they are dated years ago. Is there any newer hope out there? I would really like to speak to someone who has it, or a family member of someone who has it or preferred a survivor.

Is there anybody out there who can help me? At this point i feel soo alone. I know im not, so i really need to talk to somebody.

 
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Old 08-01-2012, 06:37 AM   #2
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Re: Questions about Cancer

Quote:
Originally Posted by stephstir View Post
My mom was diagnosed with Gallbladder Cancer January.6th 2012. She is my best friend, and mentor. I can honestly say that losing her is my biggest fear. I can recall being quite young, and having a conversation with her about death and i cried and told her she wasn't allowed to die, where she just smirked as a response. Unfortunately lately we have become rather distant, which im assuming is myself putting up a wall. When she was first diagnosed the only question was "why", but as the months go by i find myself asking so many more questions to which she doesnt have the answer to. I dont know if she is purposly not telling me(or my sister), or she genially doesnt know. I guess my first question to this forum is:
1. How informative are the doctors to their patients. Do they try to shelter them or are very straight forward?
For example, i asked the question what stage her cancer is at and she said she didnt know. Ive wanted to do research for some time, but each time i ask she doesnt seem to know. From reading forums and just trying to think as realistically as possible i feel that would be one of the first things you find out about the cancer.. I try to be patient because i was told the chemo makes her forgetful, but it seems more like she is keeping things from me.
My next concern is how she is handling her chemo, or other drugs. I am not sure the 'chemo cocktail' (i think its called?), all i know is she takes it in IV once a week. When she was in the hospital she was alright. She would dose off now and than, but she could keep up a conversation with someone and would go for walks all the time. She has been home for months now, and she has seem to go downhill extreamly. She looks.. bad.. When she stares at you, its like shes in a totally different world. Her eyes are so wide, and glossy all the time. She responds slowly to conversation and seems to have very little emotion. When i read information about beating cancer i see that the best thing to do is eat healthy and exercise.. but she can barely move. I guess my second question is:
2. Is this normal? Or is this her body failing or admitting defeat.
Part of me thinks it could be the morphine doing this to her. but im not a doctor

Alot of my confusion comes from the actual cancer itself.. Gallbladder Cancer.. There doesnt seem to be too much information on the internet about it. I have found a few forums with survivors, but they are dated years ago. Is there any newer hope out there? I would really like to speak to someone who has it, or a family member of someone who has it or preferred a survivor.

Is there anybody out there who can help me? At this point i feel soo alone. I know im not, so i really need to talk to somebody.

 
Old 08-01-2012, 06:52 AM   #3
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Re: Questions about Cancer

Hi. You`re not alone, although I know it feels that way. I live in the UK, and from what I`ve read on the internet, America is vastly better when it comes to medical care. You didn`t say how old your Mom is. My father is 85 and has prostate cancer. My Mum and I can`t get answers either. My father is forgetful and has to write everything down, so we don`t know if the hospital or doctor have told him, if he`s forgotten, or if he didn`t want to know. The hospital must have more information, but don`t pass it on to the doctor at the local surgery. We don`t know if it has spread, what his "T" number is, and they won`t carry out an MRI scan. It`s very frustrating not knowing. I did read that everyone is different, and the medical staff don`t always know the answers.

My father has been losing weight since December and feels the cold, even in the middle of summer, and has to have the heating on. He has just started hormone therapy, and his moods are up and down more than usual. He just wants to forget all about it, and carry on as normal. It could be your Mom feels the same - their way of coping with it.

I can`t help you with gall bladder cancer, but if you need to talk, I`m here.

Best wishes

 
Old 08-01-2012, 02:34 PM   #4
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Re: Questions about Cancer

First of all, I am sorry for what your family is going thru. COuld it be that your mother doesn't want to know and therefore doesn't ask the doctors any more than immediate type questions? I had a friend to had breast cancer and totally did not want to know ANYTHING about the prognosis, possible treatments, etc. She left that to her husband and she just showed up and did what they told her to when they told her. That was it. Some people are just that way. I'd want to know everything.

All that being said, is it possible for one of you to go to the doctor with her? has she signed a power of attorney for one of you to handle her affairs? If so, it's possible for you to go see the doctor on your own. Your attorney would be the best source for that information. I don't know the rules in Canada.

 
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