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posted by Homebird
05 December 2020

Caring through another round of aggressive chemo.

Last reply: 1 month ago
Sorry in advance for the long post. My mother was diagnosed with terminal mesothelioma around this time last year. The average life expectancy for her cancer is thought to be 6 months to a year. I had just graduated college and was 2 weeks into my new career in a different city when we found out. With 6 rounds of chemo coming up to try and contain the cancer I had to move back home to look after her as she couldn’t live alone. My employer was incredibly understanding and agreed to let me work from home temporarily. My elder brothers live abroad so it’s just me here and no other family to rely on. The chemo made her incredibly ill with her constantly needing to be admitted to hospital which is always a battle to get her there. She wouldn’t eat for weeks on end, couldn’t stand on her own, dress herself anything. I was sleeping on her floor for weeks to make sure she was still breathing, it was quite honestly traumatic. This was pre covid and my brothers flew home a handful of times so I got a day to myself once every month or two. I barely held onto my job with how much work I had to keep taking off. I’m a finance trainee so my hours can range up to 60 hours a week including weekends during busy periods and I’m also meant to be sitting exams. Looking back I’m not sure how I kept it together. The chemo was eventually dialled down and the harsh drug removed as she couldn’t handle it. Then covid hit and in a bid to keep her safe we have been completely cocooned since March. I don’t leave my house except for a walk when she’s ok enough to be left alone and I don’t see anyone at all. We are completely alone all day everyday. 6 months post chemo she’s been doing relatively ok and the struggle she went through was worth it. But we’ve now found out the cancer has entirely collapsed one of her lungs. In order to slow its spread, the decision has been made to try an even more aggressive 6 rounds of chemo again. As much as I want to be there for my mum and I don’t want her to die I don’t know if I can manage it all again on my own. I honestly don’t believe she will be able to handle the side effects this time around and will be left with no quality of life for her final months. She won’t have a carer come in to help and because I was only straight out of college I’m not entitled to sick pay if I have to take time off work again. It looks like I’m going to have to give it up altogether and apply for carers which I don’t think we can financially survive on at present and job is the only thing I have left of a normal life. I love my mum she’s the only family I’ve known and the idea of losing her has been very hard to accept so I feel an incredible amount of guilt that I don’t want to do this round of aggressive chemo again. Any opinions I had on this have been immediately shut down by the team as they assured me she would be looked after (she wasn’t at all the last time, in fact various complaints were filed over neglect issues in the hospital). I can’t describe in words how stressful and isolated the last year has been. She barely survived chemo last time and that was before Covid meant trips to the hospital were so much harder. I’m terrified if she goes back in she won’t come back out and could die alone in the hospital like so many have since the virus started. Chemos starting next week and I’m just not ready for it. I don’t know how other people are coping with it all during these times but I applaud anyone who is managing it. I’ve been running on adrenaline the last 12 months but I’ve run out and don’t know how to keep pushing through. If anyone else has had similar experiences or methods of coping as a carer I’d love to hear them.
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posted by Estherm
29 November 2020

Caring for someone recovering from surgery for a brain tumour

Last reply: 1 month ago
Hi, My partner has recently had surgery for a brain tumour and we're waiting for the biopsy results. The consultant has said he's 90-95% sure that the tumour is malignant. Since my partner came home from hospital, I have noticed changes in his personality and attention span, ability to find words etc. He is in good form in general, but at times he fixates on certain things such as trying to sort out his affairs, or the fact that he was told he probably won't be able to work again. He can get very anxious, which is understandable. Does anyone have any advice on how to respond to these situations? Also, I work from home and had only been a month in the job when he got the diagnosis. My instinct is telling me that I should take time off to care for my partner asap. We'll be facing into radiotherapy and chemo after Christmas and in the meantime I want to be there for him. I could potentially work part time until Christmas but to be honest, I don't think I can focus on work at all at the moment. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Kind regards,
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posted by biddyq
31 October 2020

apologies for negative post

Last reply: 1 month ago
Hi Folks I posted a few days ago and realise it was a bit negative and we don,t need that so apologies. I am finding it very hard to cope at the moment as i watch my husband suffer. Biddy Q
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posted by Mrs G
15 October 2020

Vit C and Berberine

Last reply: 3 months ago
Hi All, My husband was last month diagnosed with cancer when he was sent to hospital with suspected pneumonia. He is in his 30’s, has never smoked, always been healthy and so far we are still waiting on biopsy results to determine primary cause but the doctors commenced him on an “aggressive” chemo course 2 weeks ago instead of waiting. I am desperate to help him in any way i can and am reading a book called “how to starve cancer” and am keen to get him some good quality berberine which seems to be proven to work well with chemo. Also intravenous vitamin C has been shown to have massive benefits but i can only find a couple of clinics online in Ireland and i wonder if anyone here has experience with using either of these treatments in conjunction with chemo? And if so can you recommend a good brand and stockist of Berberine and a reputable intravenous vitamin c clinic? Many thanks for reading.
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posted by Romybriem
24 September 2020

Advanced prostate cancer with liver and bone metastasis.

Last reply: 3 months ago
My husband has been battling prostate cancer for many years now. He is 62 and very determined and positive. I’m supposed to be his Carer but while I’m good at the medical stuff I’m rubbish at the emotional support. I suffer from severe depression and anxiety and feel so inadequate that I’m not stronger for my husband. I also have a lot of physical illness. Any one else feel like this?
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posted by Lindah1967
19 August 2020

Kidney Cancer

Last reply: 5 months ago
Hi, My mother had her kidney removed 7 weeks ago but they didn't get all the cancer and they also found it in her lymph node. The oncologist are not giving her any more treatment and she is being referred back to her surgeon. We feel very in the dark at the mo. She is waiting to have another scan to see if it has shown up anywhere else and it is a high grade cancer. Our worry is that she is in pain, she has received some stronger pain killers after we contacted the hospital and her doctor but we are feeling useless and unsure how to help mam with this pain.
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posted by Cath Williams
09 August 2020

Fatigue and lack of appetite AFTER cancer treatment has concluded

Last reply: 5 months ago
My husband has recently completed his treatment (chemo & radiotherapy) but his fatigue and lack of appetite have gotten worse over the last 7 days (he completed treatment 2 weeks ago). He is now sleeping 20 hours a day and is eating very little, sometimes nothing. I have tried lots of recipes and tempting treats that he normally likes but he is not eating and continues to lose weight. I am really at my wit's end and simply do not know what to do. I intend to call the doctor in the morning but he does not want me to do that. He is lacking all energy for anything and I really do not know what else to do. Any suggestions please. Thanks
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posted by sandie20
04 August 2020

Advise on weight loss

Last reply: 5 months ago
Hi all Husband has started treatment for his lung cancer we have just completed week 1 and he has lost so much weight I’m scared dnt know how to help what to do for him any advice would be great I feel out of my depth here and we have only just started this journey
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posted by catriona
19 July 2020

Continuous Nausea

Last reply: 6 months ago
Hello. My Dad has just completed his second round of chemo(folfox). He experienced continuous nausea with vomiting after his first treatment. He ended up in hospital and was put on a pump to administer anti-nausea meds. He had his 2nd treatment on Thursday (they adapted his infusion in the hope he wouldn't be as sick) and while he is nowhere near as bad as he was the last time he still is feeling continously nauseous. He was vomiting on Friday but that has stopped now. I suppose I'm just looking for advice on any tips any of you might have on how to combat nausea. He's tried Valoid, Maxolon and Zofron but they don't seem to do anything to alleviate the symptoms. Thanks.
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posted by Annette
17 July 2020

Helping my dad

Last reply: 6 months ago
Hi there, my dad has been told that the cancer has spread to other places and is not curable. He is losing weight rapidly and losing interest in most things. I'm just looking for advice on what I can do to help make his days bearable. Some days he stays in bed and I'm trying to find ways to show him we care and bring some enjoyment to his day. New to this so open to all suggestions. Thank you
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