May 30, 2011 - 2:31 am
Even though my mother was first diagnosed with gallbladder cancer, it has spread to the liver. I'm a bit confused because they are still calling it "gallbladder cancer" even though her gallbladder was removed. When it was removed, they had NO idea she had cancer. We found that out weeks later and then weeks after THAT they had her tested again.
A tumor was found in the liver and they said it had "doubled" in size but we didn't even know there was a tumor there before that! Anyway, they are now saying she has "months" to live because of her age. She got through the gallbladder surgery and was shopping in the grocery store, pain free, within days. Such a trooper!
But here is the thing: she is 98. Does this mean we must just accept this and try nothing? I don't want to make her life miserable and I know surgery probably isn't an option - or is it? At this point, she has NO symptoms so it is hard to accept that this woman, seemingly healthy and loving life, is going to die soon. No radiation, no chemotherapy - no doctors will recommend it.
So if she is indeed going to die relatively soon, can someone please tell me what to expect? Will she start to have increasing pain? They have already given her a container of Vicodin and told us to set up home health care now, even though she doesn't seem to need it yet. Also to make hospice arrangements. Maybe I am in denial and I don't want to be because my first priority is to be an effective and loving caretaker and that means handling the reality - but it just doesn't "seem" real yet. I have trouble understanding she is very sick when she doesn't seem to be.
Please someone...give it to me straight because the doctors have said when things get worse they will get worse VERY quickly. Has this been anyone else's experience when caring for someone? I just want some answers or shared experiences because the doctors won't talk straight, even when I urge them to. They just look away and give vague answers. Maybe that is all they can give? Maybe they don't know how things will go and everyone is different? Anyway, they say she has between 1 to 5 months left.