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week one down - so far so good

Posts: 25
Joined: Feb 2012

Hello all,

Just another update. Dad just finished week one of the rad/chemo combo. He is having radiation every day and chemo (Taxol/Carboplatin) infusion every wednesday. So far so good, except for being a little tired he hasn't had any symptoms. He did fast for 48 hours before the chemo and 6 hours afterwards, so maybe this did help after all! I'm sure we won't know until we are farther along in this. (He only lost 1 pound in the fasting and the doctors were all very supportive of this as long as he didn't lose too much weight.)

The portland VA has been amazing so far - put my Dad up in an apartment connected to the hospital - and even let myself and my son stay there with him for a few days. OHSU has also been very kind - doctors from both hospitals are part of our "team." Dad has to walk a good hike across the skybridge to OHSU everyday, but so far everything has been going smoothly.

He seems to be worried about the surgery (and the feeding tube after the surgery) the most at this point. I keep telling him to take it one day at a time.

Hmmm..okay, that's it for now. Sending good healing thoughts out....

- Karrie

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Posts: 665
Joined: May 2010

Feeding tube was my husband's best friend.

I was terrified of his getting a feeding tube. Its operation is simple. The little joey pump is efficient. Due to swelling, infection and inflammation from radiation, he had a rough time and had nothing by mouth for well over a month.

The feeding tube kept him nourished and helped with weight maintenance. He tried to stay active during treatment, which as it progressed, became challenging, but he kept going. Since he loves to be busy, he discovered that he could go all day and not have to stop to eat. He'd come home, "hook-up" the feeding tube, watch TV and then sleep. I could operate the pump. If I can do it, anybody can.

Celebrate the upcoming surgery. There are some post-op challenges for awhile--some worse than others depending on the form of surgery you have, but the outcome is ultimately the same, a chance of showing no evidence of disease (NED)!!!!

Husband two years post-op; busy as can be. Last scan NED. Yes, he has eating issues when he overeats, chooses sweets or "heavy" foods like mashed potatoes (that aren't homemade), sticky rice, etc. He knows how to avoid these, but.....

So, the journey is a bit bumpy for some; however, it is a blessing to have the opportunity to travel. Good luck on the treatment!! BMGky

Posts: 71
Joined: Feb 2012

yes, my husband worried about the feeding tube too. Turns out it's one of the least troublesome of the things that's happened to him.

stephikindred's picture
Posts: 153
Joined: Mar 2012

The feeding tube helps me keep my mom hydrated during chemo. She is supposed to drink at least 24 oz of water on chemo and that is not easy for her to do. Heck, it's not easy for me to do either. Not only is the feeding tube providing nutrients at night, it is providing hydration during the day. I put a cup in at a time via syringe at different intervals throughout the day. At first, we were all sad about the need for a feeding tube but now that we can really see the good it does I am so glad that it was one of the first things the doctors did right for my mom.

captdave's picture
Posts: 168
Joined: Feb 2012

Karrie, The surgery is tough no matter which one your father has. He is fortunate that he has the option of surgery! That hike to OHSU every day will help your dads conditioning going in to the surgery. Facing the surgery was scary for me but not having it was scarier. You father is a lucky man to have the option of surgery and to have you looking out for him.

Posts: 57
Joined: Dec 2011

I'm glad that your Father has had a good 1st week. I still am shocked that he would choose to fast - as eating/getting nutrition seems to be quite problematic with EC. Please keep us posted. I'm hoping the best for your family.

Posts: 25
Joined: Feb 2012

Hi Monica,

The research on the fasting is so impressive we couldn't not try it. We are being careful, though. In consultation with our doctors (who are also supportive) he is carefully watching his weight. He is only fasting if he is back up to his baseline weight on mondays (chemo is on wednesday.) He fasts from monday morning to Wednesday afternoon, then reweighs himself to make sure he hasn't lost to much weight (and to know how much weight to put back on for the next monday!) We know that he probably won't be able to do this for all 6 weeks because it will get harder to keep the weight on, but its work getting the best start on zapping this cancer as possible!

- Karrie

a good article on fasting: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=fasting-might-boost-chemo

mruble's picture
Posts: 179
Joined: Jun 2011

Thanks for sharing the link to the article, Karrie. You learn something new everyday on this site!


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