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Tuffcookie 10-05-2006 05:13 PM

Any ideas on life expectancy of stage 4 oral cancer patient
without treatment?

The reason I'm asking "without treatment" is this:

My mom is 83 years old, living with me. She was diagnosed with non-hodgkins lymphoma-myeloma in 2000. She wanted to have new partials made. During the process of having teeth removed the oral surgeon saw "suspicous tissue" in her upper mouth (hard palate). He biopsied it and we are awaiting the results. She also has developed a lump on the right side of her neck.

Being the worry wart that I am, I am almost certain she must have stage IV oral cancer. She has always been so proud of her appearance. She gets her hair done weekly, won't leave the house unless she has her make-up on., etc. (Me I'm up and out the door in 1/2 hour!)

If we are faced with the realty of oral cancer and this was your mom, what would you do? From what I'm reading surgery, radiation, and chemo would greatly deminish her quality of life.

I hate to think of her leaving the world this way.:(


angeleyes0906 10-06-2006 03:09 AM

Re: Any ideas on life expectancy of stage 4 oral cancer patient
I am sorry to hear about your mother, its always hard to hear this news, and worse to have to wait for results.

Hopefully it will be nothing, but I have been where you are, my grandmother was 92 and had a second round of colon caner, she elected not to undergo treatments. She remained happy and alert right to the end. She was a teachers aide and was in class up to the last two weeks when she became to weak to go anymore.

My mother is 72 now and just diagnosed with mens ii, terminal. She also is electing to not undergo surgery or treatments. She looked at the treatments, and the prognosis effects and she felt that it didn't warrent taking the chemo or radiation, as she would not have quality or gain longevity.

It is such a personal discission whether to pursue treatment or not, look into the treatments, side effects and effect on prognosis. If the treatment causes debilitating side effects and doesn't effect the prognosis in a significant way, then I would have to think hard about doing it. However, look at the progression of the desease itself and see which is worse the treatment or the process of the desease itself.

Best wishs

shnswms 10-06-2006 06:51 AM

Re: Any ideas on life expectancy of stage 4 oral cancer patient
Each patient is different. It also depends on the pathology of the cancer whether it is slow or fast growing. At her age I would think most forms of treatment would hurt her quality of life. It really depends on what she wants to do. Without treatment anywhere from a few months to years. It's really impossible to tell. Best of luck.

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