Aug 31, 2012 - 12:35 pm
My 72 year-old mother was diagnosed with esophageal cancer on November 7th, 2011. After undergoing a multitude of tests, we learned she was Stage IV on January 31, 2012. She began chemotherapy in early February. She had 4 cycles(every other week) of Cisplatin, (5FU) and Leucovorin and then had another scan after the fourth cycle to see how she is responding to chemo. She had mild response to treatment. On 5th cycle changed from Cisplatin to Oxaliplatin. A day before the 5th cycle started, mom had a blood transfusion.
Last week mom had a PET scan and an MRI due to loss of balance. Brain looks ok but the disease has progressed so we did not get the results we were hoping for. The scan showed mets to the bone, stomach, liver and pelvis. New chemo started today is Docetaxel (taxotere). Her side effects from prior treatment include peripheral neuropathy, malaise, mouth sores. No more driving and difficulty walking and maintaining balance. She is losing motor function to her hands as well.
I was shocked to hear of so much spread. I am wondering if the chemo is worth it since the disease continues to spread. They wanted to put her on an additional chemo but I urged the oncologist to consider her quality of life and he said we will try this one only and see how she responds. This is so hard. Now I am second guessing not doing the additional chemo it when he told me about those side effects I just had to wonder when enough is enough.