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The chemo may not be working anymore


KatieB

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Hi friends,

Over the last two weeks my dad's condition has gone from stable/almost good, to unsteady and sometimes downright bad.

We did manage to get him to his Onc. last week and it was determined (thru blood tests only) that his counts were low and were the reason for his dizziness, fatigue and dehydration. He recieved an arenesp shot and a big bag of IV fluid to re-hydrate and that was that. He doesn't get seen again until next tues. when he is due for more chemo.

He is still very fatigued (more than his usual) and shakey and vomitting intermittingly. He has said he feels a bit better and not dizzy and never any headaches, but I can see by looking at him that something is just "off", you know.

I can't help but get this thoughts in my head in regards to the chemo and his cancer. What if the chemo has stopped working? By statistical standards, it is about that time for it to stop working. What if the cancer has begun to grow? What if there isn't another chemo that will work like this one? WHat if, not only the chemo isn't working, but he has developed other mets????? Ugh! I know, it's the CWD in overdrive again.

But there isn't a rational explaination for his sudden B/C drop+ dehydration ! He's been on the Topotecan for three months with no effects like this, why now? Also, he has one day (ONLY ONE) of vomitting after his shot and chemo....the last two weeks he has been vomitting off and on every other day. What gives? The only answer I have is that the chemo is wearing down and his body isn't receptive of it anymore and that it may be another turning point for us. I guess all we can do is wait and see.

On a brighter note, my mom- Mrs. Denial - actually said something to cheer me up today. I voiced my concerns about the cancer coming back, growing, and that the chemo may not be working and she immediately told me that we couldn't go there. That only god knows the plan - which could be twenty years, or two days. Can't be bothered with that as God already has it covered. Just enjoy what we can. I was proud of her for saying that. In the old days (I'm referring to the last year here :roll: ) Mom would have said " OH he's fine! He's eatting and everything so he is OK." and wouldn't even discuss anything real.

I got dad out of the house today and talked him into going to the super Target after I came home from church. He rode the lark around and it was good to see him out amongst the living! I walked beside him from the driveway into their house and turned my head for just a second to put my key in their door when I heard a HUGE crash.... My GOSH I thought my dad had fallen down !!

I turned my head and expected my dad and instead saw my mom....she had tripped on her sandals- beside the flowerbed and their boat and was laying flat on the cement! I was terrified!! She is 68 - and tough as nails so I helped her up as my dad had made his own way into the house...

GEEze! Give me a heart attack. A swollen wrist and a skinned knee is what she has - told her to take two tylenol and call me in the morning! :wink:

Sorry for the novel guys, and thanks for letting me vent. My prayers for each and all of you as always,

Love,

K

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Katie, I had to chuckle when you said your mom was 68! Like she is so frail! That happens to me my age, and I don't view myself as frail. I'm glad to see you got your dad out and about. That is a great thing to do. Glad your mom didn't break anything (on her, that is). Blessings. Don

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Katie

I think I know how you are by now and I am telling you just STOP IT! Stop driving yourself crazy, your Mom is right you know. You are thinking of all the worst things that can happen to your dad! (And I do understand and don't blame you at all)

Did you ever stop to think that the reason that he is feeling so lousy right now is because of the cumulative effects of the chemo? They told me that it would get worse near the end of my chemo treatments, the chemo drugs build up in your system so after you have had a lot of them you get sicker and tire more easily. I know it is happening to me and I am only on my first set of chemo drugs, but I expected it to happen. I just started to vomit about 3 weeks ago, before that not once, and now I tire much more easily than I did in the beginning. For instance yesterday morning I did not get up until NOON! And then I went back to sleep at 8:00 p.m., this is a woman who barely slept 7 hours a night all her life and was a night owl! It is bound to happen, just picture all that poison in your system after months and months, it kills a lot of the good cells along with the bad. I think your Dad is just reacting to all the chemo that he has had since the beginning.

I know how difficult it is but try and take it one day at a time and see what the doctor has to say before you give yourself a nervous breakdown.

Praying for your dad and for you

Best

Bess B

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Katie- my mom seemed to look the worst at the end of her chemo treatments, too. She actually even had to have a blood transfusion, but after that really bounced back.

I hope that happens with your wonderful dad, too.

Hugs,

Hope

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Katie,

I hope that your dad is feeling better soon. Maybe he just caught a virus or something. My mom is having alot more nausea with her chemo lately also. Is your dad due for any scans in the near future? I will keep you and your father in my prayers. Lets hope both our parents will be feeling much better for the 4th of July holiday!!

Keep us posted.

Lots of Hugs,

Susan M.

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Katie, you said your mom is tough as nails, I think you take after her. It was good you got your dad out of the house. That seems to help me tremendously. Bess may also have a point-the cummulative effects of the chemo may be getting to him, lord knows it is getting to me now. Hang in there Katie and like your mom said, trust in God.

David C

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Dear Katie,

I am so sorry for your anxiety. I too think its the chemo. I cant tell you from experience cause my dad prabably will never get chemo, however just from belonging to the boards, we have heard it will get worse before it gets better. Try to get those thoughts out of your head and listen to your MOM!!!

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Katie definetly adopt your mom thought process right now!!! who the hell knows! Your dad is entitled to a bad few weeks, it has happened before and he has bounced back! You know what i am in shock of BUT it goes with out saying in texas....SUPER TARGET??? you kidding me??? hahaha Mass has nothign like that we got target what maybe tops 3-4 years ago I am waiting for the IKEA to open up in 2004! :D Again if you need anything do not hesitate!!!

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Katie,

I am definitely with everyone else. I think that is why my mom looks and feels so horrible too. Her doctor told her to expect it. It is very cumulative and the side effects get worse. Thats why my mom wants to quit chemo.

She has one to go if she does do it.

I know its taking her longer and longer to bounce back after each chemo. Its been 2 weeks since last chemo and she still aches and cant walk 20ft. without a break. She is sicker and sleeps more and goes longer between eating too.

I would bet its the chemo.

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Katie, I am so sorry I didn't see your post earlier, but couldn't get on the board for two days-which completly panacked me...I thought the board was gone, or I lost my way to it. Anyway, I apologize.

How hard is it NOT to put the cart before the horse? But your mom is right, and it is good to try to remember that you just don't know...which sucks, by the way...not that I have to tell you, cause you know that already. Is my post even necessary??? :lol:

Sorry there are no Golden words of wisdom I could give you...it seems that the confusion is an epademic these days. I feel like I am in such a haze of confusion, I told Farley to get to the potty before-he's my dog :oops: ...I think I need to give MYSELF a break from potty training my 2.5 year old, the stress with Dad is getting to me...so why give myself MORE?

Katie, lets make a deal...when the thoughts of those GRIM statistics come into our heads (which is natural) lets get a mental picture of those statistics being wiped out by a HUGE TORNADO...the tornado just gets hold of those statistics and sends them into a whirlwind, because honestly, that is just about what they are worth. Be realistic, sure, but exactly WHAT DOES THAT MEAN, ANYWAY? In my humble opinion, they mean to keep a keen eye, so that you can nip any problems in the bud, whether they are side effects from chemo-dehydration (which you are all too familiar with), or mets...and keeping an eye on the docs, if you feel something is up, speak up...I got dad to the Dr. on Monday because I decided enough was enough with the difficulty breathing, and the doc got the CAT scan moved up from the thurs afternoon test to Tues. morning, which means we will have the results THIS week, instead of NEXT week-which helps. It is common knowledge that you have been doing the same, you have been looking out for your dad, and been involved with his treatment- please remember that, no matter what happens, you MUST remember that YOU HAVE DONE YOUR BEST, after that it IS IN GODS HANDS. NO REGRETS, OK? Please, Katie, try not to let the worring consume you, I know that is hard, believe me, but you have to try.

How is your mom doing since her spill? Was she trying to take your mind off of your "Dad worries", :lol: Tell her that she is to stay AWAY from the sandles, she is to start wearing sneakers only---make that the velcro ones, you don't need her tripping on any untied shoe laces :lol: .

Seriously, Try to take care, Katie...and NO APOLOGIZING FOR LONG POSTS> as always, you are in my thoughts and prayers, Deb

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LOL :lol::lol::lol:

Thanks so much ALL of you. And YES, as always, you are all right. I am severely cursed with CWD, and yes, dad did start to feel better this week, and yes I know that it could last one day or one year....I just had a melt down and you guys are great in lifting me back up again. I'll post more this evening when I get a chance. LOVE and hugs to each one of you, my heros.

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Hi Katie,

I am sorry to hear that your dad was having a few bad days there. As everyone has stated, it may or may not be an indication that the chemotherapy regimen has stopped working. It is out of our control, and yes it can suck, but it can also help us. If you think about it, if you let go of control, you are free to live. Even if the chemo has stopped working there are other things that should be vaailable based on what your dad has been on. For instance, the drug taxol would be a possibility, as it has shown activity against SCLC. Also the regimen of cytoxin/adriamycin and vincristine have helped many with SCLC. So hang in there, and now that the ship is not sinking. You are in my prayers.

Sincerely,

Jonathan

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Katie - As everyone always tells me " don't look for trouble, it can find you all by itself ". You sound alot like me - constantly worrying about the "what ifs" and WE NEED TO STOP IT!!!! Hope Mom's on the mend also... (make sure you pay extra attention to her, I find that sometimes my Mom gets alittle jealous of all the attention I shed on Daddy). Love, Sharon

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Katie, I'm sorry I missed this post initially!! Glad to hear your Dad's doing better. I am sure it's just he cumulative effects of the chemo. My mom was feeling very tired at the end of her treatments and she couldn't understand why.. I am sure it was the effects of 6 treatments of poison!!! It can wreak havoc on the body, it's perfectly normal.

Try not to worry too much, I know easier said than done!!! Hang in there and I am praying for your Dad!!:)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Katie,

As I just started posting, I came across this just today. Your worries are a testimonial to how much you love your father and that can be a double edged sword. I am the same about my wife Jan and I know what you mean you say you can tell your Dad's "off". He probably can't explain it to you as Jan cannot explain it to me, but I know when she's "off". This chemo for the good it does, has effects that are dramatic at times, and they come out of the blue. That "chemo look" as I call it. There are so many factors involed in your body that can go wrong and cause the nausea, fatique, etc. that I can't figure it out. I have to trust that the doctors know what they are doing, and I continue to read up on stuff. This is allnew waters for us. I hope your Dad is dong better now, and it's just the chemo that was doing some funky stuff to him at the time.

Take care,

Larry

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LArry,

You're right. When I wrote that several weeks ago - It was the chemo and if I haven't introduced myself to you properly, my name is Katie and I have CWD (cronic worry disorder!! :wink: )

I am a control freak when it comes to my dad's care and treatment (he must have the best, and he is so soft spoken and "go with the flow" that nothing would get done if I didn't do it or push!) He says he appreciates this - Before the cancer, he would have lovingly called me a pushy loud mouth!!!!! 8)

He's just had a great x-ray and for the second time, his lungs (on x-ray) show no signs of disease! But CT's are coming in two weeks that then is when we will really be able to tell.

He's still on chemo every other week. He is still extremely fatigued and weak, but he eats well and life is moving on. We have hope and LOTS of love.

Welcome. And thanks for your reply to my post!!

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Thanks again Katie. I am in the CWD club too. Got that from my Mother I believe. Glad your Dad is doing better, that's fantastic news! Will await hearing good news from the CT scans. Take care.

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