No more chemo?

kellyh33 Member Posts: 287
My Mom has been chemo since June 22nd 2010. She had 7 rounds of carbo/taxol three weeks apart, 13 rounds weekly of a clinical trial and now she has had four treatments of doxil three weeks apart. Debulking surgery Sept 2010 was unsuccessful. The oncologist at the time said 12-18 months.
Her last chemo mom was very upset. She is down to 83 lbs (this is nearly a 7 lb loss from the month before) and she was just anxious, scared and sad.
Today she told me doesn't want to do it anymore and has been thinking about it for a few months. I asked her if she knew what not doing it anymore would mean and she said yes, she knows she will die. God, this makes me so sad. It's not fair.
Of course she was crying and so was I. I told her I would support whatever decision she made. She promised me not to tell anyone, she said she mentioned it to my Dad once and he told her she was being ridiculous. I don't believe my Dad really knows how exhausted my mom is, since he is blind he can't see her to know she is woren out.
She also said this is what she wants most of the time but not all of the time. I told her if she decided she didn't want chemo anymore then she probably could not change her mind down the road.
I don't know how to help her, she is so scared. Everyone is my family is at a loss what to do. My Dad wants her to be get her nutrition through an IV and Mom does not want this. I can tell but she will do it because it's what he wants. Apparently, he will call tomorrow to find out about this.
Part of me wonders if it's been worth it for her. She has done all this chemo and for what. She is worse off now then she was last summer and it is killing me.


  • LaundryQueen
    LaundryQueen Member Posts: 676
    chemo break
    It is possible to take a break from chemo--I did it for a couple of months. I think your mom needs the IV nutrition, too. It's called TPN. I think it is way overdue, too.

    There is something called hydrazine sulfate that is given to dying cancer patients to slow the wasting process but it is not considered a viable treatment by oncologists. You would have to find an alternative doctor to see your mom and find out if the hydrazine sulfate could help her. I took it for a few months when I was moving in the direction of dying. Your mom is dying of malnutrition along with the cancer. I am very sad for your whole family.

  • Cafewoman53
    Cafewoman53 Member Posts: 735 Member
    This is so hard
    This is so hard for you and your family. If your Mom decides on chemo or not she needs to address her nutrition issues. She and her body can't fight if she isn't strong enough. Maybe a chemo break to build herself up. Im sorry you have all this to deal with,good luck.
  • mopar
    mopar Member Posts: 1,972 Member
    I've been at this place, with my dear mother. And I really know what it feels like to say, 'I'll support you no matter what your decision'. But I agree with the other ladies - maybe building up her body with a chemo break and good nutrition will help her to decide more effectively. 'The spirit is willing, but the body is weak' is what comes to mind. When I 'felt' strong I had a whole different outlook and energy to move forward. But on bad days it was almost as if because my body wasn't up to par, must mean I couldn't do this? Well, I know better than that now, so I really hope you can encourage your Mom to pursue the nutritional support.

    As for your Dad, I agree that because he doesn't actually see her physical appearance, his perception will be different. Maybe not much you can do to change that, only a heart-to-heart talk between Mom and Dad.

    Sending hugs and prayers, Kelly. Please keep us informed.

  • Tethys41
    Tethys41 Member Posts: 1,376 Member
    I agree with Laundry Queen. Your mom needs TPN, and anything else that will help her body get stronger. It is possible that if she gains some strength, she will have a better outlook on life. High dose IV vitamin C would also contribute to making her feel better, as well as help her body keep the cancer at bay.
    That being said, however, cancer is a personal journey. Some people use it as a way to leave their body, for whatever reason. If she sincerely wishes to end this fight, it IS completely her decision. If it is what she chooses, she will need her family's blessing.
    Perhaps you could make a compromise and ask her to do the TPN, high dose vitamin C, and what Laundry Queen recommended, and give it a month, to see if she changes her mind. If not, then you could support her decision.