Colon cancer stage IV

8colon8
8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member

Hi all,

I am the caregiver to my wife who is dignoased as stage IV colon cancer in June 2018. Joined this group and couple of days later, this site crashed...lol.  Anyway, she will be taking her last Xeloda pills tomorrow. Can we claim this as the last day of chemo?  Her last CEA reading before the start of this last cycle of chemo is 6.2, it started from the 30's to 90's and gradually decreased to the current 6.2...we are not sure what to expect after this.  She will be seeing her oncoligist the following monday to find out what he has planned for her.  He mentioned something about being on maintenance but we are not sure what that entails. Any insight would be helpful.

Also, i read about drinking a full glass of carrot juice daily to help keep cancer away.  Any feed back on this too?

 

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Comments

  • Trubrit
    Trubrit Member Posts: 5,625 Member
    edited February 2019 #2
    Welcome back

    I was hoping we didn't lose any new members with the crash. 

    How joyous that your wife is on her last chemo.  I hope for her sake, that she doesn't need additional treatment, and can just be on the watch and wait part of life.  Each Oncologsit follows their own plan, so it is hard to say wether she will continue with a lower dose chemo cocktail or just be taken off completely. 

    As for the Carrot Juice. There are so many different things out there, that say 'if you do this, the Cancer won't come back', but alas, one never really knows. What you need to do is read up on things and chose what your (your wife) think will work for her. 

    Some folks here take many supplements; some none. Some are on a strict no sugar plan, others just cut it down.  I've been reading up on Curcumin, and take a fancy to supplementing with that. I've never taken supplements, but I'll give it a whirl because it appeals to me. 

    I wish you both all the luck in the world, as your wife moves into this new stage.  

    Keep us informed. 

    Tru

  • 8colon8
    8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member
    Trubrit said:

    Welcome back

    I was hoping we didn't lose any new members with the crash. 

    How joyous that your wife is on her last chemo.  I hope for her sake, that she doesn't need additional treatment, and can just be on the watch and wait part of life.  Each Oncologsit follows their own plan, so it is hard to say wether she will continue with a lower dose chemo cocktail or just be taken off completely. 

    As for the Carrot Juice. There are so many different things out there, that say 'if you do this, the Cancer won't come back', but alas, one never really knows. What you need to do is read up on things and chose what your (your wife) think will work for her. 

    Some folks here take many supplements; some none. Some are on a strict no sugar plan, others just cut it down.  I've been reading up on Curcumin, and take a fancy to supplementing with that. I've never taken supplements, but I'll give it a whirl because it appeals to me. 

    I wish you both all the luck in the world, as your wife moves into this new stage.  

    Keep us informed. 

    Tru

    Thank you for your insight. 

    Thank you for your insight.  I was just wondering if any one on this site ever tried the carrot juice routine.  It's true that we don't have sufficient data from those drinking the juice like at what stage of the disease they started drinking and it made a difference.  

     

  • flowerrod
    flowerrod Member Posts: 5
    hi, i'm a caregiver to my

    hi, i'm a caregiver to my husband with colon cancer stage IV. i feel your pain.... we are curr on the maintenance chemo- Avastin + 5Fu. the side effects are minimum so it's easier to handle it. however, hubby is suffering from neuropathy from the previous drug (oxiplati) the goal is now to be maintenance chemo as long as possible.... if disease progress, we have plan B - the other nasty drug to add. oncologist said everyone is different, but he saw patients going on maintenance chemo for years... so that's the goal. i haven't heard about carrot juice, but we drink beet juice daily as it should help blood... the blood counts so far are stable/good..

  • SandiaBuddy
    SandiaBuddy Member Posts: 1,259 Member
    Carrot Juice

    It seems a glass of carrot juice a day would be helpful.  It is not part of my regime, but it must be awfully nutritious.  There is plenty of research about it on pubmed, which is a good resouce for most any medical questions: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=carrot+juice+cancer

  • 8colon8
    8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member
    flowerrod said:

    hi, i'm a caregiver to my

    hi, i'm a caregiver to my husband with colon cancer stage IV. i feel your pain.... we are curr on the maintenance chemo- Avastin + 5Fu. the side effects are minimum so it's easier to handle it. however, hubby is suffering from neuropathy from the previous drug (oxiplati) the goal is now to be maintenance chemo as long as possible.... if disease progress, we have plan B - the other nasty drug to add. oncologist said everyone is different, but he saw patients going on maintenance chemo for years... so that's the goal. i haven't heard about carrot juice, but we drink beet juice daily as it should help blood... the blood counts so far are stable/good..

    Thank you. That's what she

    Thank you. That's what she was not looking forward to. We are praying for a non chemo maintenance route. I am not sure she's emotionally ready to go on to an endless chemo regimen. As it is, she was struggling emotionally for the last 10 months throughout this first chemo treament.  She had to take Ativan to help tie her over some days.  Her neuropathy is not as severe, feels tingling only thank God no numbness. What was his CEA at the end of his first treatment if I may ask? Did his oncologist indicate if there is a point where they do not have to go on a chemo maintenance?   

  • 8colon8
    8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member

    Carrot Juice

    It seems a glass of carrot juice a day would be helpful.  It is not part of my regime, but it must be awfully nutritious.  There is plenty of research about it on pubmed, which is a good resouce for most any medical questions: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=carrot+juice+cancer

    Thank you. Her oncologist

    Thank you. Her oncologist restricted her food consumption to cooked food only and that it has to be no more than 3hours old during treatment. So I read about carrot juice and its effects on cancer and now that she's coming off chemo just wondering if any fellow cancer survivor have experience with it one way or another.  Thank for the link you have provided, definately will check on it.  

  • Trubrit
    Trubrit Member Posts: 5,625 Member
    8colon8 said:

    Thank you. Her oncologist

    Thank you. Her oncologist restricted her food consumption to cooked food only and that it has to be no more than 3hours old during treatment. So I read about carrot juice and its effects on cancer and now that she's coming off chemo just wondering if any fellow cancer survivor have experience with it one way or another.  Thank for the link you have provided, definately will check on it.  

    Cooked food only and 3 hours old

    That is the first time in my six years mixing with the good folks here, that I have ever heard an Oncologist suggesting (and it is just a suggestion) that. 

    Quite odd! 

    I guess it doesn't hurt, so might as well try it. 

    We used to have allot of juicers on the forum, when I first got here.  I know a couple who won't be coming back, but a couple more who are doing well and don't post any more.  I hope you find your answer about juicing.  If not, your wife will find something that she believes works for her. Its a very personal thing and sometimes has no medical backup.  I personally like to drink a glass of freshly squeezed orange and lemon juice, every day. Now I can't say that is the only reason I am 5 years (almost - April is almost here) NED, but for me, at least in my head, I believe it. 

    Tru

     

     

  • Joan M
    Joan M Member Posts: 409
    I was told no raw veggies too

    I guess we've all hearf of the ecoli scares, and other problems with raw foods that cooking eliminates.  They probably didn't say meat because it's not common to eat uncooked meat - except for those who like their steaks bloody.   I've heard of the lemon water, and other alkaline foods, and also heard about the carrot juice, there must be some good benefits but wouldn't trust any diet alone to cure cancer.  I do believe that a good diet and suuplements can help keep along with the medicine to get rid of it and keep it at bay once you've killed it off.  You'd have to read the results of any studies out there to know and then everyone reacts differently to each and every medicine and supplments I assume.

    Wishing your wife the best and hope that her treatment goes well.

    Joan  

  • SandiaBuddy
    SandiaBuddy Member Posts: 1,259 Member
    Trubrit said:

    Cooked food only and 3 hours old

    That is the first time in my six years mixing with the good folks here, that I have ever heard an Oncologist suggesting (and it is just a suggestion) that. 

    Quite odd! 

    I guess it doesn't hurt, so might as well try it. 

    We used to have allot of juicers on the forum, when I first got here.  I know a couple who won't be coming back, but a couple more who are doing well and don't post any more.  I hope you find your answer about juicing.  If not, your wife will find something that she believes works for her. Its a very personal thing and sometimes has no medical backup.  I personally like to drink a glass of freshly squeezed orange and lemon juice, every day. Now I can't say that is the only reason I am 5 years (almost - April is almost here) NED, but for me, at least in my head, I believe it. 

    Tru

     

     

    Cooked?

    I took capecitabine (Xeloda) with no dietary restrictions besides "resume normal diet."  I often ate two "uncooked" salads a day with no ill effects.  I guess everyone's situation is different.

  • Diane_K
    Diane_K Member Posts: 75 Member
    Great news about your wife

    Great news about your wife finishing chemo! 

    I am a stage 4 colon cancer survivor which had metastasized to my liver and both my lungs.  They were able to surgically remove the tumors and I am now a little over two years NED.  I have scans scheduled for next month and am getting nervous but hoping for the best.  I'm following a life style plan by a MD who has been practicing integrated medicine for over 20 years, specifically for cancer patients.  He has a book called Life Over Cancer, by Dr. Keith Block.  In his book he outlines food, supplements, exercise, stress reduction in a very clear and concise way.  He believes that chemo and surgery are important in battling cancer but these other healthy choices can also help our bodies fight cancer and endure the surgeries and chemo. I juice cruciferous vegtables, green leafy vegetables and a small amount of carrots daily.   

    Best wishes to you and your wife.

  • 8colon8
    8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member
    Trubrit said:

    Cooked food only and 3 hours old

    That is the first time in my six years mixing with the good folks here, that I have ever heard an Oncologist suggesting (and it is just a suggestion) that. 

    Quite odd! 

    I guess it doesn't hurt, so might as well try it. 

    We used to have allot of juicers on the forum, when I first got here.  I know a couple who won't be coming back, but a couple more who are doing well and don't post any more.  I hope you find your answer about juicing.  If not, your wife will find something that she believes works for her. Its a very personal thing and sometimes has no medical backup.  I personally like to drink a glass of freshly squeezed orange and lemon juice, every day. Now I can't say that is the only reason I am 5 years (almost - April is almost here) NED, but for me, at least in my head, I believe it. 

    Tru

     

     

    No, it wasn't a suggestion

    No, it wasn't a suggestion and my wife took it very seriously. She can't eat fruits like strawberry or any food that is grown in the ground uncooked. What's cooked strawberry going to taste like...lol.  We are chinese so she doesn't really eat the raw salad anyway.  I on the other hand loved salad especially when it's covered with lots of dressing.

    One of my biggest challenge the last 10 months was getting her to eat, as one of her side effect was the lost of her smelling filter and taste bud. none of the food she used to like smell or taste the same. It is a struggle for her at meal time. We cook typical chinese food, so now frying garlic and ginger is too pungent for her. Ahhhhh.

    I agree with you that the head/mind is very important.  I need to find ways to help her find that peace with this situation as her emotion is getting the best of her right now. She has not been able to receive the positive direction her treatment is heading. She was not able to express any joy towards good news.  We are seeing a pyschiatrist that is helping but the medication reacted with the chemo meds causing additional side effects. So we decided to try after her chemo treatment. Yeah, so the goal is to help her get her mind set towards positive thoughts one day at a time.

     

     

  • 8colon8
    8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member

    Cooked?

    I took capecitabine (Xeloda) with no dietary restrictions besides "resume normal diet."  I often ate two "uncooked" salads a day with no ill effects.  I guess everyone's situation is different.

    Yes, guess everyone's

    Yes, guess everyone's reaction to the side effects are different also. It's the oncologist... he has a terrible bed side manner anyway.  But my wife has taken his instruction to heart, and I find it pointless fighting it.

  • 8colon8
    8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member
    Joan M said:

    I was told no raw veggies too

    I guess we've all hearf of the ecoli scares, and other problems with raw foods that cooking eliminates.  They probably didn't say meat because it's not common to eat uncooked meat - except for those who like their steaks bloody.   I've heard of the lemon water, and other alkaline foods, and also heard about the carrot juice, there must be some good benefits but wouldn't trust any diet alone to cure cancer.  I do believe that a good diet and suuplements can help keep along with the medicine to get rid of it and keep it at bay once you've killed it off.  You'd have to read the results of any studies out there to know and then everyone reacts differently to each and every medicine and supplments I assume.

    Wishing your wife the best and hope that her treatment goes well.

    Joan  

    Thank you Joan,

    Thank you Joan,

    Guess the oncoligist was afraid of the ecoli etc from uncooked food. We were told that drinking alkaline water would help, and the oncologist was totally against it. He even told us of a person who died from drinking alkaline water while receiving chemo treatment.  Yeah, he is quite something, though everyone said that he is an excellent oncologist on staff.

    Her body is responding positively to the treatment as every test result has shown, it's her head and heart thats having difficulity absorbing this turn of event in her life. Thanl you.

     

  • 8colon8
    8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member
    Thank you Diane,

    Thank you Diane,

    Her cancer has metastasized to two lymph nodes by her aorta around the abdomen. Initially, the oncologist didn't think any of the surgeon would operate on it because of the location and the size. At his turmor board, one surgeon would but only after my wife completes the chemo treatment. Since then, we had 3 PET scan and each time the activities around the site has shrunk in size. The head to hip scan did not pick up any other active activities. (fingers crossed) eliminating other possible spreading of the cancer cells.

    With the end of her oxliplatin infusion 2 monday back and her oral xeloda just yesterday, we are set for another scan next month to be followed up with the surgeon in April. The surgeon feels that since she is responding positively to the chemo, that it would not be advisable to go fishing around the aorta.

    Mind if I inquire what plan did your oncologist put you on for 2 years since your last chemo and operation? And thank s for suggesting the book from your doctor. I will  definately check it out.

  • SandiaBuddy
    SandiaBuddy Member Posts: 1,259 Member
    8colon8 said:

    No, it wasn't a suggestion

    No, it wasn't a suggestion and my wife took it very seriously. She can't eat fruits like strawberry or any food that is grown in the ground uncooked. What's cooked strawberry going to taste like...lol.  We are chinese so she doesn't really eat the raw salad anyway.  I on the other hand loved salad especially when it's covered with lots of dressing.

    One of my biggest challenge the last 10 months was getting her to eat, as one of her side effect was the lost of her smelling filter and taste bud. none of the food she used to like smell or taste the same. It is a struggle for her at meal time. We cook typical chinese food, so now frying garlic and ginger is too pungent for her. Ahhhhh.

    I agree with you that the head/mind is very important.  I need to find ways to help her find that peace with this situation as her emotion is getting the best of her right now. She has not been able to receive the positive direction her treatment is heading. She was not able to express any joy towards good news.  We are seeing a pyschiatrist that is helping but the medication reacted with the chemo meds causing additional side effects. So we decided to try after her chemo treatment. Yeah, so the goal is to help her get her mind set towards positive thoughts one day at a time.

     

     

    Heart and Mind

    Reading between the lines a bit, it seems the "heart and mind" issue may be the more important one for your wife.  Since you mention your Chinese heritage, perhaps she would be open to meditation.  Buddhist philosoply may be a bit different from the practices of traditional Chinese Temples, but many on this board have found meditation helpful. 

  • 8colon8
    8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member

    Heart and Mind

    Reading between the lines a bit, it seems the "heart and mind" issue may be the more important one for your wife.  Since you mention your Chinese heritage, perhaps she would be open to meditation.  Buddhist philosoply may be a bit different from the practices of traditional Chinese Temples, but many on this board have found meditation helpful. 

    Hi Sandi, yes you hit it on

    Hi Sandi, yes you hit it on the button. We are Chinese Catholics and we migrated from Singapore.  She's aware of the need to have faith, trust and all that stuff. She knows about various meditation form but is struggling in getting it going.  She just can't find that motivation to get there.  That's my other challenge,  helping her see and feel that the journey forward is achievable. Sighhhh.

  • SandiaBuddy
    SandiaBuddy Member Posts: 1,259 Member
    8colon8 said:

    Hi Sandi, yes you hit it on

    Hi Sandi, yes you hit it on the button. We are Chinese Catholics and we migrated from Singapore.  She's aware of the need to have faith, trust and all that stuff. She knows about various meditation form but is struggling in getting it going.  She just can't find that motivation to get there.  That's my other challenge,  helping her see and feel that the journey forward is achievable. Sighhhh.

    Meditaion

    Tru often mentions a meditation recording she found helpful.  Perhaps listening to something like that would be easier than reading or practicing in a more traditional manner.  Thank you for your great concern and love for your wife.  I am sure she appreciates it, even if she is preoccupied with other matters now.

  • Diane_K
    Diane_K Member Posts: 75 Member
    When I was diagnosed in 2015

    When I was diagnosed in 2015 my colon cancer had spread to my liver.  I had colon and liver surgery, and six months of chemo. (oxaliplatin and xeloda)

    Three months after I ended chemo three nodules began to grow in my lungs and tested positive for cancer.  I had them surgically removed and went back on chemo for six more months. (irinotecan and 5FU)

    I did not go on a maintenance chemo after that.  It's been a little over two years since my last surgery and one year and seven months since I ended chemo.

    Before I had my lung surgeries I sought out a second opinion.  One doctor suggested an ongoing maintenance chemo after the surgery, and the other doctor suggested a more aggressive approach of full strength chemo for six more months.  I chose the more aggressive approach.

    Each person has their own unique situation and one treatment plan doesn't fit all.  I wish the best for your wife and hope you are doing well too.

     

  • 8colon8
    8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member

    Meditaion

    Tru often mentions a meditation recording she found helpful.  Perhaps listening to something like that would be easier than reading or practicing in a more traditional manner.  Thank you for your great concern and love for your wife.  I am sure she appreciates it, even if she is preoccupied with other matters now.

    thank you Sandi, I will wait

    thank you Sandi, I will wait to ask Tru about the audio meditation. Yes, she finds it hard to focus in reading books. Family and friends bought books for her to read, but the books are just sitting on the table. We are trying audio kindle and audio books, problem is that we are not certain of legit authors or titles.

    The frustrating part is seeing her getting frustrated at herself for not being able to get out of her depressed condition. Guess only you survivors would know.

    anyway thank you for responding.

  • 8colon8
    8colon8 Member Posts: 40 Member
    Diane_K said:

    When I was diagnosed in 2015

    When I was diagnosed in 2015 my colon cancer had spread to my liver.  I had colon and liver surgery, and six months of chemo. (oxaliplatin and xeloda)

    Three months after I ended chemo three nodules began to grow in my lungs and tested positive for cancer.  I had them surgically removed and went back on chemo for six more months. (irinotecan and 5FU)

    I did not go on a maintenance chemo after that.  It's been a little over two years since my last surgery and one year and seven months since I ended chemo.

    Before I had my lung surgeries I sought out a second opinion.  One doctor suggested an ongoing maintenance chemo after the surgery, and the other doctor suggested a more aggressive approach of full strength chemo for six more months.  I chose the more aggressive approach.

    Each person has their own unique situation and one treatment plan doesn't fit all.  I wish the best for your wife and hope you are doing well too.

     

    Thank you Diane, my wife was

    Thank you Diane, my wife was diagnosed in April 2018, had her colon surgery in June, followed with 8 cycle of oxaliplatin with 14 days of xeloda in each cycle. the oncologist started her also on the aggressive approached then adjusting the dosage down when she experienced adverse side effects.

    Thank you for sharing your journey. your experiences help us see that it is possible to go on without maintenance chemo, as long as we (the cancer team) are on top of tracking the cancer cell movement.