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Newbie ... my poppa has stage IVB colorectal cancer, untreatable ... what to expect?

ezzi's picture
Posts: 10
Joined: Apr 2011

My poppa is 79 years old, diagnosed with stage IVB colorectal cancer--poorly differentiated mucinous adenocarcinoma, very aggressive, multiple mets to liver, probably also to peritoneum. He cannot tolerate further chemo or radiation.

He also has IgM multiple myeloma, currently smoldering status, cardiovascular disease, and an abdominal aortic aneyurism 2.57cm.

He has lost about 70 lbs, has no appetite, forces himself to eat, and is STILL rapidly losing weight...cachexia.
He's very, very weak & fatigued.

He has asked me what will happen to his body as the cancer progresses...I told him that he'll probably eat less and less, sleep more and more, and eventually lapse into unconciousness for some time, anywhere from minutes to hours to days, and pass away while "sleeping."

He's having constant abdominal pain now, but is reluctant to take narcotic pain meds because he feels that once he does, he'll be "done for".

Please, anyone, tell me what to expect with end stage colorectal cancer?
I know every situation is different :)

Thank you,

Buckwirth's picture
Posts: 1272
Joined: Jun 2010

I am so sorry to here this. Have you contacted hospice yet? Even if your Poppa is not there yet, they can help plan for it, and they can let you know what to expect.



ezzi's picture
Posts: 10
Joined: Apr 2011

We're in the process of setting up hospice as we speak, Blake. Poppa asked us to call "home health care, because it's gonna be hell on y'all"...he's the one suffering, yet his first and foremost concern, as always, is his children. He is a man among men.

Hospice was an absolute godsend when my oldest brother passed away (glioblastoma multiforme) in 2008.

...I think that I've done all the crying that I possibly can, then grief comes roaring back and hits me like a sledgehammer. Here I go again.

Thank you for listening...it means the world to me.


JoyceSteele's picture
Posts: 146
Joined: Nov 2010

Leslie, sending a hug, and hope you can feel some comfort during this difficult time. I am going to pray for you and your Poppa. Love, Joyce

plh4gail's picture
Posts: 1238
Joined: Oct 2010

You can ALWAYS come here to cry, vent, laugh and (((hug))) others. It's what we do best here. It's definitly understandable, so you go ahead...then take a breath and back to life's stuff until the next wave comes along. Lot's of comfort to you sweetheart.


Posts: 4
Joined: Apr 2011

My father was diagnosed in 2009, 2 days before my final treatment for Hodgkins Lymphoma, with Stage IV Colerectal cancer. It has spread to his liver. After receiving treatment for over a year we were told in January that they can't cure it and he probably has less than 12 months. I cry a lot and feel a lot of grief as well. He is 61 years old.

Posts: 3692
Joined: Oct 2009

I am so sorry. I think it is good you are speaking with hospice + it sounds like you + your Dad are both caring, loving people.

pepebcn's picture
Posts: 6352
Joined: Aug 2010

just stay here and will find support and help for your fears !
Hang there and take care of you too!
Have a big hug!

ezzi's picture
Posts: 10
Joined: Apr 2011

you have no idea how touched I am by this outpouring of support ... thank god I found this forum.

John23's picture
Posts: 2140
Joined: Jan 2007

For what it's worth (and I'm certainly not promoting this), you
might want to look into this: Hydrazine Sulfate

I have two bottles stored away, just in case nothing else works.
The two bottles are enough for the full treatment, and it's cost
was under $60.

I have no idea of it's value against cancer, but when there's
no place else to go, it may be worth a try.

My best to you both,


tootsie1's picture
Posts: 5056
Joined: Feb 2008


Just wanted to tell you that I'm praying for your dad.


Buzzard's picture
Posts: 3073
Joined: Aug 2008

allow yourself to purge your feelings...Its natural to do what we do in these situations. Just let Dad know that he is loved and that all will be ok. The largest thing a father worries about is how his family will be after he is gone. Just assure him that even though he will be missed severely, that you will be ok. When you do that for him, he will then have peace with whatever comes. We know how hard this is as you do, but be ok with the feelings you show. Its natural and ok to cry when we cry...love, peace and calm for you in the days ahead..........Clift (buzz)

ezzi's picture
Posts: 10
Joined: Apr 2011

I spend almost every day with Poppa...we don't say much, but I know that he is comforted by my presence.

Poppa is a curmudgeon who has seen it all and done it all and he has absolutely no tolerance for BS...he's an excellent judge of character. A couple of weeks ago, Poppa and I were talking about my husband, Tracy (an absolute angel of a gentleman...we've been together for 22 years, and I STILL can't believe how lucky I am to have him in my life).

I said, "Poppa...Tracy is very, very good to me."

Poppa looked directly at me, very intensely, and said "I KNOW he is." And then he smiled. I said "I'm good to him, too. We take care of each other" Poppa nodded and smiled. I can't put into words the feeling of peace and approval I still feel after that exchange of words.

I haven't yet been able to bring myself to tell Poppa that even though I will grieve for him like no one else and can't imagine the world without him in it, I will eventually be OK.


I had a meltdown yesterday afternoon. Cried alot. Better today :)

I read each and every word that is posted on this thread, again and again and again---each and every one of you is making a difference in my life. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Love to all of you.

Posts: 6
Joined: Apr 2011

Leslie, I am so sorry to hear what you are going through. I too am new to this site (just a couple of days) and I agree that there seems to be so much compassion and understanding on this site. Please know that I am here and so it seems are many others if you ever need to talk, cry, vent, or anything else.


momma g
Posts: 6
Joined: Mar 2010


I totally agree with buzzard!

plh4gail's picture
Posts: 1238
Joined: Oct 2010

I'm so sorry Leslie, must be very hard. The hospice is a good idea for help for you. Peace and comfort for you and your family.


lselasco's picture
Posts: 5
Joined: Aug 2009

Hi Leslie,

I haven't been on this site for a long time and for some reason needed to check in. I lost my father over 20 years ago when he was 56 years young...to melanoma. I was already 27 but felt like a baby knowing he was leaving us. You are so fortunate to have your dad for a longer time, although no matter what age someone passes it's never long enough.

I think this is a wonderful time for you to just be there with him, tell him you love him and have wonderful chats. My father and I were very close, similar in character, temperament and nature...but during this time we really talked to each other, serious things, silly things and telling each other we loved each other. At such a young age we never would have guessed he would die so young.

It sounds like you have a wonderful marriage and someone to help you through this time and you are very lucky.

If you're all wondering why I'm on this site, I am a 2.5 year colon cancer survivor (Stage IIIC) and so far all is good. Reading all your comments of love and support to Leslie makes me remember why this 'place' is so special. While many of us have great personal support it's good to go where we are understood and I guess for some reason I needed to be with my Colon peeps today.

Bless you and your father Leslie and bless all of you in your day to day LIFE. :-)


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