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  • What to eat when you can't even digest.

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    Old 06-10-2006, 09:20 PM   #1
    ntki's Avatar
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    What to eat when you can't even digest.

    Hi, everyone. I am new to the board. I couldn't find many active cancer related forums, which alarmed me to an extent.. there are literally dozens of pet forums out there teeming with members but not too much for people who literally are dying for help. Please forgive me if my post is a bit long.

    Anyways. My aunt was diagnosed with some sort of gynecological cancer approximately 2 years ago. I believe it was uterine because she had a hysterectomy then... please forgive me if I sound very vague on my facts because I only know what I know from my mom who does not speak English very well, so I don't think she has proper terms to label everything.. and I can only literally translate so much. It had been up and down since last November or so, when the doctors gave her 3-6 months to live. I think she currently weighs about 80lbs at 5'4". She looks 10 years older. Also since her initial diagnosis the cancer has spread to her digestive system. The cancer is latched onto her intestines that she can barely digest. They've cut a hole near her throat for her to pull out anything she can't digest, and they have a tube attached to her intestines for any waste to come out of, into a bag (yes I know there's a technical term for this but it's escaped my mind now).

    I went to see her today for the first time in 6 months, and it scared me very much how deteriorated her state had become. I was so afraid to visit her until this because I did not want to face my beloved aunt on her deathbed. And as scared as I am, I am scared even more to lose her. She means so much to my entire family. She is my mom's best friend; she is my uncle's wife, my favorite cousin's mom; she is the baby of her family, the youngest of 6 children. She is the first one to have gotten any sort of disease.

    As of now, the doctors have said if she comes off her IV, she will die within a few days.

    A few months ago I started researching nutrition for cancer patients. And it has all these recipes and food recommendations; it's all well and good, but what do you do to help a cancer patient gain weight when they are barely able to eat? Puree everything? She has to eat! The doctors have refused to do any more chemo on her because her liver is so weak that she will die if they do any more.

    Please, please any help would be very much appreciated, I am so concerned about her.

    Last edited by ntki; 06-10-2006 at 09:23 PM.

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    Old 06-11-2006, 07:03 AM   #2
    gocatsgo's Avatar
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    Re: What to eat when you can't even digest.

    I am so sorry for your aunt and your family. I'm not sure what you could give her to eat...try some Ensure shakes. You may want to contact a Hospice center. They are very nice and may give you some good tips. My thoughts are with you.


    Old 06-11-2006, 07:19 AM   #3
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    Re: What to eat when you can't even digest.

    Hi Ntki:
    In the way of food, give her anything soft with high calories, I really wouldn't give too many veggies, but if you do, the carrots, for example, need to be OVERCOOKED, so that they are so soft they almost melt as she's chewing them.

    Also, I would go to the store TODAY and start her on Carnation Instant Breakfast. You can mix it with vanilla or chocolate ice cream in a blender to make a milkshake and let her slowly drink that. Supplement three times a day. Ensure is good too, but gives a lot of people diarrhea. The instant breakfast tastes good and will go down good. Also, buy her some straws, or stop by a Friendly's if you have one near you and get a couple of the flexible larger size bendy straws to allow a thicker solution like the consistency of a milk shake. You can also throw a bannana into the blender with everything else, add a little vanilla flavoring (the kind you use when cooking) just to make it taste good.

    SOFT IS THE KEY HERE. You want to make sure whatever she eats or drinks is very soft... chicken with gravy on it, etc. I think you get the picture.

    Also, I agree with Cats... Get Hospice in there. They are great, and will already know what I am telling you.

    I wish you both the best of luck,
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    Old 06-11-2006, 01:04 PM   #4
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    Re: What to eat when you can't even digest.

    I concur with everything Cats and CD stated. Sorry to hear about your aunt and this terrible thing she is going through.

    Good luck and you and your family are in my prayers.

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