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keeping up the fight

Posts: 18
Joined: Dec 2005

Here is the situation: My dad finished his chemo in August for stage 3 rectal cancer and his PET scan in November showed it was back and in his lungs and abdomen lymph nodes. He was admitted to the hospital b/c of a bowel obstruction due to a tumor. He now has a ileostomy (he had a colostomy before). Onc told him on wednesday that he wanted to start a feeding tube b/c he is so weak and if he wanted to do chemo he would need a kick start of nutrition. He now weighs 134 from 220 last year. The thing that bothers me is that my dad's onc keeps asking "This is what you want right?" Like he is trying to talk him out of it. The onc says if chemo works than he gives him 1-2 years but if it doesn't work, only a couple of months. He will be starting avastin this time. Does anyone have any experience with the chemo working or not in this type of reccurance? Your advice and prayers are needed.

Posts: 425
Joined: Jan 2005

Hi Jessie:
My husband went through adjuvant treatment for stage 3 and like your Dad- at his 3 month check up after the chemo it showed lots of mets in his liver and one in his lung..that was in August 05...he started chemo and didn't do well on folfiri and avastin (no real shrinkage with an increase in metastatic load in the liver...then started xeloda and oxaliplatin in February 06 and is doing really well..feels great- put on some weight and last CT scan showed reduction in size and number of liver tumours...so for sure have your Dad start on chemo and tell him about all the positive outcomes of stage 4 survivors on this site...help him keep his attitude positive and there is a really good chance he will be here for many more years to come...

Posts: 553
Joined: Mar 2006


First of all, please do not pay close attention to those stats. I really hate when doctors give their patients a life expectancy. They really don't know how much time a patient will have with or without chemo. Also, from your previous postings it sounds like this is what your father really wants. I don't really understand why the doctor is discouraging him. I do agree with him about the kick start in nutrition. Your dad will need to regain his strength while he is on chemo. If he is out of the hospital, maybe you could get him started on a good nutritional regimen (i.e., protein shakes, etc...). You and your father are both in my prayers.

God bless,


lfondots63's picture
Posts: 822
Joined: Jan 2006

Hi Jessie,

I think the doctor might be worried about all the weight loss. Like it was said, try to get him started on good nutrition to gain some of the weight back. As hard as it is, he needs to start drinking the protein drinks. Being upset about the set back will decrease his appetite too. Tell him that it is only a bump in the road and work on one thing at a time. Nutrition first and then at least stopping the growths. HUGS and sending your father and you good vibes.

Lisa F.

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