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giving up

Posts: 15
Joined: Apr 2002

My husband continues to have a very sore, swollen throat and swallowing is very difficult. That, along with his COPD has brought him to give up any treatment other than pain management. He feels that at 74 he has no more to contribute. I support him in his decision."Who's life is it , anyway." He is very headstrong and will not be swayed. I have done all I can to help him and appreciate all the help I have received from the network members.

Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2002

Does your husband have Nasopharynx cancer? My does, and its a rare cancer and I have no one to ask questions. He has gone through radition and chemo treatments, just finished 04/10 however he is so weak, after all this time, he is only 53 years old, the cancer was found in Feb, and they stated at a very early stage, his complaint at that time was some lost of hearing. His chemo treatments was 5 days in hospital 24 hours of chemo for 5 days, he was suppose to do this 4 times, every 21 days plus his radition from neck up. He completed radition, 7 and half weeks and 2 sets of chemo, however, he got so weak and has lost 50 pound, on a feeding tube that they couldn't do the other two. I'm not sure if I'm going to lose him or not. I feel maybe he has given up, all he does is sleep.... I don't know what to do, we have been married for 31 years. It seems like the doctors don't know what to do....

thanks for listening......

Posts: 15
Joined: Apr 2002

Dear Roseanne, My husband has oral pharyngeal cancer. Had 2 mos of radiation starting in Jan. That is all the treatment he has had. We live in a small town on an island and have little access to resources. A visiting ENT has been doing the follow ups every two mos. We don't like his attitude. When the throat started to swell and even be visible form the outside, he dismissed it saying "that happens". He can eat only canned peaches and drink a nutrition drink and this is very hard for him. He is 74 and we have been married 40 years. He feels he has lived his life and done all that he wanted, so he refuses to have any further treatment. Says he will hang on as long as he can, but is resigned to dying. He is taking an antidepressant and is able to stay up all day, watch TV and read and play solitaire. He is treating himself with pain pills and whiskey. So all I can do is support him at this time, but dread the suffering at the end. If he must go, I pray for a quick end.
It sounds like your husband is very depressed and unless he has a good reason to keep on, it will be very hard to snap him out of it.
My heart goes out to you as I know what you are going through and I pray for you and your husband. You may have to resign yourself to the ultimate fate, as I have; but I still have a glimmer of hope.
Best wishes and prayers. Jaunty

Posts: 27
Joined: Apr 2002

Roseanne I have nasalpharnyx cancer and have it sice I was 29 I am now 55 and have had several recurrances so if you would like to talk to me jerrikehoe@hotmail.com hearing was the first to go with me as well.

Posts: 7
Joined: Apr 2002

Hi Roseanne,

To state the obvious, your husband has been through a great ordeal -- you also! On top of that he's lost 50 pounds. I can only suggest giving it some time. I too went through the radiation (bar-b-que) therapy and it really kicked my you know what. I lost 27 pounds. It took me 6 months to get the strength to go to the gym. Today marked the third month back at the gym and I've put on 15 pounds weighing in at 173 - only 12 more to go. The only thing I can offer is to get food into him and lots of it. His body is fighting for it's life and he needs mucho calories. To give you an idea, I'm consuming roughly 2800 calories (8 cans) of equate plus and 2 large glasses of juice from my juicer for a total of about 3300 calories per day.

As far as what you can do -- stay positive, be there, and let him know that this will pass.


Posts: 17
Joined: Jan 2003

I agree with him for goodness sake he has been through enough I feel that often when cancer strikes when you are older it could be better left alone unless life is at stake eg eating breathing etc at 74 cancer is slower to,kill than in young cells

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