CSN Login
Members Online: 8

You are here

Mom has Stage 4....

shmoots1
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 2014

Hi I'm new here. My Mom was diagnosed with Stage 4, non-small cell adenocarcinoma in Nov. 2013 She is 63.  They used the Gamma Knife to take care of the lesions in her brain, then started her off on chemo, which (except for the nausea) she was doing nicely on, the tumors even shrank, until she started having severe pain one side of her face after the last chemo. Then they gave her 10 radiation treatments to her head. But while they were giving her that they halted the chemo and her breathing got bad. So they did a procedure to drain the fluid, then started her on 10 radiation treatments to her lungs which she will be done with this week.  Her stomach has never been good, she gets bad nausea and only one of the meds works a little- is that normal? These radiation treatments have sores all over the inside of her mouth and down her throat...she has been in so much pain, One nurse finally perscribed Diph Maal Lidocaine (a Swish and Swallow), at least making it easier for her to eat!! She also takes her regular pain meds, but they constipated.

We could really use any advice/experience. thank you.

Agv
Posts: 13
Joined: May 2014

I have started a round of 30 radiation treatments 5 days a week and one chemo treatment a week for 6 weeks and I'm on my second week of this.  I spent the whole weekend vomiting and being so weak I could hardly go.  I am trying my second nausea medication now but from what I hear many people have the nausea, vomiting, mouth sores and hair loss with all this.  I too have been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer with it in my T12 bone in spine.  

I have tried Zofran for nausea and now am taking Compazine, which doesn't help either.  Prayers that your mom feels better.  

 

dennycee
Posts: 836
Joined: Mar 2011

You should not be experiencing it this bad, especially in The first week.  Are they giving you Emend with the chemo?   How is your hydration level.  Do you know the tent test for dehydration?  Gently pinch the skin on your forearm, if it goes right down when you release it its okay.  If it stays tented for a moment before returning where it belongs you are experiencing dehydration.  Please ask your dr about the Ativan as well.  

Combined chemo and radiation are very hard on the body.  it is much easier to become dehydrated than you might expect.   It happened to me early on.  

Agv
Posts: 13
Joined: May 2014

I will ask about that.  Today after radiation I am running a fever.   I am very tired and weak and, yes, dehydrated.  I am drinking a lot but staying dehydrated anyway.  This combination is very hard on my body.  I hope I can make it through this treatment.  Do you have any idea why a fever?  

 

Thanks 

dennycee
Posts: 836
Joined: Mar 2011

Adding a sports type drink can help replace them.  I kept beverages on both sides of my bed a d drank whenever I was awake. Even if I wasn't thirsty.  Let your nurse or dr know that you are mildly dehydrated.  They can increase the amount of fluids they give during chemo.   

I don't know what causes chemo fevers but if they hit 100.5 you should report it to the dr.  It can only make dehydration worse. The body needs fluids to flush chemo from kidneys so no damage is caused.    

dennycee
Posts: 836
Joined: Mar 2011

Your mom has had quite the roller coaster ride.  It's quite a scary one.  For the rest of her radiation to the chest, have her swallow a tablespoon of honey 30 min before her treatment and again 15 min after.  It helps lessen the damage to the esophagus.  L-glutamine can help as does aloe juice.   

To help relieve constipation give her Miralax or Sennakot daily.   Tell the nurse or dr that the anti nausea meds are not doing their job.  They can increase the strength of the one that does.  Does she take an anti anxiety med?  Ativan helped manage my nausea as well as anxiety.  

Stock up some easy to swallow foods, that have no spice especially peppers. Applesauce, pudding and fruit cups, cottage cheese, yogurt, fruit for yogurt smoothies, mashed potatoes, buttered noodles, oatmeal, cream of wheat, scrambled eggs, ice cream, bananas, rice with butter, soups (heat up to kill bacteria and cool down), use a blender to chop up pieces of roast beef or pork, puree or finely chop veggies and fruit and anything else that fits. 

Calories are more important now than a balanced diet. She may not be able to stand things she usually loves, it's the chemo. Plastic forks and spoons are good, they help reduce the metallic taste the chemo leaves on the tongue. Keep some of these things stocked next to where she rests and sits in a pretty basket to make it more attractive to her and easy to get independently. 

shmoots1
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 2014

Mom is done with radiation and can't start chemo for another 4 weeks because she is too week. I didn't realize that anti-anxiety meds might help with nausea. We'll have to be sure to ask about that. Do you take them daily or as needed?

She has been drinking tea with raw honey to sooth her throat. Also, lots of soft foods. Whatever tastes good to her, but things do taste different to her lately. I asked Mom's dr if any special diet would even make her feel better and she basically said No Eat whatever.  

The cancer has metastasize in her brain and they recently drained fluid from her lung, so her dr gave her a ballpark prognosis of 9+mos if the cancer is kept under control. 

@Dennycee,  I hope you don't mind me asking, I noticed you said you were diagnosed over 3.5 years ago, what have you done to stay healthy? If I am being too forward I appologize.  I would like to do whatever I can for my Mom.

@Agv, I hope you feel better and good luck with your treatments

I will keep you both in my prayers.

shmoots1
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 2014

Dad had to call an abulance 3am tuesday morning because Mom was having so much trouble breathing. They put in a chest catheter and have drained over 5 liters of fluid over the last few days. They are going to use some sort of powder in her chest when it is done draining so this wont happen again. Has anyone ever had this/ heard of it? She is swollen and still in pain/weak from the last bought of radiation. It is hard for her to move.  Luckily, the drain has helped and she is breathing better and in better spirits.

Subscribe to Comments for "Mom has Stage 4...."