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Bill is so very tired........

Posts: 29
Joined: Jun 2011

Bill had his esophagectomy 3 months ago and has actually had his j-tube removed because he was eating well on his own. He has not had to have chemo or radiation since they caught his cancer so early. But he is having such a hard time getting his strength up. He is literally exhausted when he does the least little thing. He is 74, so we know it will be harder to get strong again because of his age. But it is alarming to see how little he can do right now. Is this normal? How long does it take to start doing things again? We were told that he would be very tired after surgery, and he was in the hospital for 35 days with several setbacks, but I just don't know whether to be concerned or not at this point. I know this seems like a trivial problem after all some of you have gone through, but you have all been very helpful to us in the past. I'm sure some of you have had a similar experience. Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.


PS- I pray for all of you every night. Our faith has kept us going through some very bad days and I know the Lord will be with all of you through your difficult times.

sandy1943's picture
Posts: 883
Joined: Jun 2010

Hi, I was extremely weak after surgery. My oxygen level dropped and I had to go on oxygen for a couple of months. I started going to the gym and did low impact exercise. I contribute this to my starting to regain strength. It took me several months to start feeling good again.
Praying he'll do a turn around soon,

Posts: 665
Joined: May 2010

My husband was very weak and tired. He could not walk the length inside our house without assistance and rest at first. He, too, was hospitalized for over a month. Takes a lot out of you. It is one year plus a few months post op. He is pretty much back to normal in activity but he gets very tired still. While stronger, he is not nearly as strong as he was before all the treatment with its issues and the surgery. Yet, he is doing great! He was significantly weak for several months post op. It was some 7 months post op before he started getting to be like his old self.

Hope he feels better soon. Try not to get discouraged. It takes a long time to get over the treatment and surgery.

Thanks for the prayers, and prayers are sent your way.

Donna70's picture
Posts: 921
Joined: Aug 2009

I had the more extensive surgery in 12/09 and then had some lung complications which were treated but I remember it was not till that was addressed that I started getting my strength back in July 2010, so 7 months was when I could actually start doing more than cooking and some lite cleaning, could go in the garden and walk a little farther. It is different for everyone and depends on any other health issues that the patient has. He should not be discouraged, just be patient and do a little more and make sure that there are not any other issues to be addressed. My lung problems were not recognized at first, everyone thinking it was just regular post op problems. So any issues that remain should be addressed to the drs. Hope he starts getting more strength. I ate peanut butter a lot and that helped my nutrition and weight and then I got stronger also. good luck!!

Posts: 65
Joined: Apr 2011

Hi, my husband is 75 and weak. We are still in the hospital, only 1 week post op, but I will def. be asking to see if he is a candidate for acute rehab to get him back to his pre-chemo/radiation/surgery state. Maybe you could ask his Dr. if he could be evaluated for that program. I'm assuming he is Medicaire and that would be covered. Just a thought.

Posts: 149
Joined: Jul 2011

My husband was 67 when he had the Ivor Lewis op and for the first 6 months he did very little. A lot of the time he was asleep. And then he just started to improve and has been improving ever since. He is great now and I remember the surgeon telling him that it would take him at least 12 months to recover and not to worry because he was very good at his job. Alan is 14 months post surgery and the surgeon was right on both accounts.

birdiequeen's picture
Posts: 329
Joined: Mar 2011

My husband also did not have chemo or radiation but did not have energy back for 3 or 4 months. He is 24 years younger and only in the hospital 8 days. I agree that you should bring up any issues with your Dr. and just try a little more each day. Small steps.....before you know it things will improve. It does take effort to improve, make sure he continues to push himself.

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