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Chemo questions/support


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Thank you all so much for the quick replies .....

This hasn't been the easiest weekend for me or my family. I recently started a job in Tucson AZ, and had only been here 2 weeks when I found out the devastating news about my mom. I immediatly flew home for two weeks, while we took her in for her biobsy, waited for the results, and then waited to be contacted by the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. Like I said before, our lives went from completley normal one day, to completely miserable the next day.

Now that I am back in AZ, I am really having trouble coping. I am here with my fiance ... we just got engaged in April, but I really wish that I could just go back to North Dakota and be with my family and my mom. I am struggling with anxiety, loss of apetite, trouble sleeping, and lack of motivation - especially at work.

My mom however, seems to be doing a bit better. She is currently in the hospital with a blood clot (doctors say due to the malignancy in her body) and is scheduled to begin chemo this Tuesday. Something of which she is deathly afraid of. DEATHLY AFRAID of! Last week, she was even considering NOT doing it .... but I think she has come around.

Is there anyone out there who can relate to being a family member and being far away from the situation. I am struggling daily with wanting to go back home and just be with her. Or anyone that has any "Chemo Tips" that I can give her. She keeps saying she would love to visit with someone who has had inoperable lung cancer and is living on a daily basis with it.... which many of you are.

Thank you all so much for listening and providing helpful advice!

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I'm taking chemo right now--it really doesn't seem to be causing me too many problems. First, while you are getting your treatment, the nurse will inject anti-nausea drugs right into your IV. You will leave with anti-nausea drug prescriptions or maybe even some free samples. I was instructed to take them before bed that night and for the next three days whether I thought I needed them or not. I did that, and while I wasn't really interested in doing much, I was not sick.

I also am continuing to work full time and take care of my dogs and my house. My husband is a big help, but I've been doing yardwork, mowing the lawn (trying to build up that lung capacity), and basically whatever I feel like. I think I am tired more and require more sleep, but that's ok too.

I was not able to get my treatment this past week because my blood counts were too low, but that happens all the time, and there is nothing I can do about it. Chemo was not required for me, but I wanted some extra assurance that I'm doing everything I can to fight this.

I hope your mother takes the chemo--it's not nearly as bad as it may have once been. I think that one of the most important things during chemo is to drink water and more water. You get really sick if you let yourself get dehydrated, and it helps to move those drugs out of your kidneys and the rest of your system if you keep pushing fluids.

Good luck to you and your mom.

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I am a caregiver for my husband. He is presently have chemo again, now because the cancer met'd to the liver. The chemo didn't bother him much. He did drink a lot of water and still does...It was the radiation that took him down for months. He is now getting a bit stronger, for we just got back from an 11 hr driving trip to myrtle beach. Tell your mom that.....

Things alway look black when one finds out that they have lc. the family is just as devastated as the person with it. We fear for what will happen to us whether we want to admit that one or not. We fear what will happen to our loved one. I say over and over again, go for today, if its a good day, enjoy it. If a bad day, 24 hours will be over soon....

YOu mentioned family. Who is at home with your mom or nearby? I am sure they will be able to handle whatever comes around. Hopefully, things will go well throughout these treatments. I know my friend's mom, who is 73 was still cutting her grass throughout her chemo treatments..and is still cutting after her treatments.

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I just wanted to say thank you for the advice on the chemotherapy questions. I spent about 2 hours one the phone last night visiting with my mom about her first chemo treatment this upcoming week. She is taking medication to help her blood thin out and the dr's were worried about putting a "port" in for the chemotherapy. Thankfully, they did in the end, decide to put a port in her upper chest area for the chemo. From all that I've read in books and on the internet, the port is the way to go for chemo.

My mom does have tons of support at home. I am currently in Arizona with my job, but my family lives in a small town in western North Dakota. The whole community has rallied around my mom, as it does when anyone is sick. She also has tons of friends that have cleaned the house, brought over meals for my family, visited, and dropped off cards. So the support is definitley there!

Does anyone have any nutrition ideas for chemotherapy and even after treatment is over? She has been struggling on the eating thing since she was diagnosed, and they finally gave her something for that. She has been able to eat right all weekend now. I'm trying to do as much research as I can for her.

Again, thank you all for the support. I have begun to take things one step at a time. Although this has not been easy for my family, I am slowly starting to digest things and get the ball rolling. Thanks for the help!

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As far as Nutrition advice during treatment, the hospital will most likely have some brochures or booklets on the subject -- also check and see if they have a staff nutritionist that you can talk to.

As far as a good book -- I always recommend "What to Eat When You Have Cancer". It has specific eating recommendations during chemo, broken down into very easy to follow guidelines.

Prayers going out to your mom -- tell her to stay strong. Chemo isn't fun, but it wasn't as bad as I had envisioned it in my mind.

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Nice to meet you.....I am sorry to hear about your mom's diagnosis but I thought that I might share my story with you (briefly) and offer some advice. My mom (46) was diagnosed with Stage IV NSCLC in April. Like you, I had just recently moved from their house in PA to new job (and life) doing cancer research in Boston. When she was diagnosed, I felt like I had been hit with a truck. Im an only child, and my mom is my best friend. We have an amazing relationship, and I always spoke to her on the phone every day- though college and the move here- she was my support system. Anyway, all I could think about was getting back home to be with her. But a few family discussions later, it was decided that I would stay put. She started treatments, and I started visiting every other weekend. My whole world has turned upside down...and I can't focus on much of anything...But...she has tolerated the treatments reasonably well...and I have every reason to believe that she has a lot of time left with us.

As far as tips for chemo go, I don't have much more to offer you...but I wanted to let you know that I am here to listen...and I know what your going through...

Stay strong...


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