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acting loopy?????

Guest fight4dan

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Guest fight4dan

Thank you for the responses. Sadly,things appear to be gradually getting worse. As I previously stated, my FIL has a morphine pump to manage his pain. However, the hospital staff is not allowing time to see if the pump actually works. They are giving him pills whenever he asks. It seems that he does not know what he wants or needs. This is the same man that is asking for people that have been dead for 10 years. He also tried to bite my husband yesterday, when he was acting like a dog. My husband states that about 3 days ago, he became very loopy. He is saying the most off the wall things and then the next minute, he is lucid and able to talk for a few minutes. It is very difficult to watch (as my husband tells me every night on the phone). I got the opportunity to talk to him today on the phone and it made me cry. The Dr who put in the morphine pump came in to see my FIL yesterday. He stated that his loopyness could be one of 2 things: 1)drug interaction or 2) the cancer has moved to his brain. Then he stated to my husband, "your father is nearing the end and his days are numbered". So, that is where we stand. They completed another tx of rediation yesterday. They say that they can not take him to have a CT to check to see if the cancer is in his brain, because they don't want to move him. However, they can take him out of the bed, place him in a wheelchair, go over a bunch of bumps to another building and take him for radiation. Due to all the movement, he "needed" a "pain killer sucker" on the way back from radiation. It amazes me that they can not tell us whether or not the drugs are causeing him to act crazy or if it is the cancer. We are still waiting for him to be transfered to Roswell Park Cancer Center, but they stated that they do not have any open beds. I just can not shake how different he is acting from when I saw him just Last Thursday. Hopefully a bed will open at Roswell Park, before it is too late!!!! Thank-you for listening.

Does anyone have experience with someone nearing the end and acting loopy?..or do you think it is the drugs and he might have a chance?

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Opioid Side Effects: What They Are & How to Cope

A report from M. D. Anderson's Grand Rounds series on pain management.

There's no question about it -- opioid medications are by far the best medications for cancer-related pain. Although powerful drugs like opioids do have side effects, M. D. Anderson pain experts say most of these symptoms can be managed. "We're doing a lot better job of treating pain and creating rational pain management plans," says Larry Driver, M.D., clinical medical director of M. D. Anderson's Symptom Control and Palliative Care Center. "We take a proactive approach to treating the possible side effects of opioid medications."

Opioid medications work on specific receptors in the brain to decrease the sensation of pain. They include drugs like morphine, hydrocodone and hydromorphone. In most cases, opioids are administered orally, but other methods include transdermal, intravenous or epidural applications.

Central Nervous System: opioids can have a wide range of side effects on central nervous system (CNS) functions. "Opioid pain medications can either inhibit or excite the CNS," says Driver, "although inhibition is more common." Patients with depressed CNS functions may feel varying levels of drowsiness, lightheadedness, euphoria or dysphoria, or confusion. These symptoms can manifest themselves when first taking the medication, or when the dosage is increased. Decreasing the dosage or changing medications usually takes care of the problem. "We may sometimes add a psychostimulant like Ritalin to help counteract the symptoms," says Driver. "Those drugs have to be taken before 1:00 p.m. so they won't interfere with the patient's sleep/wake cycles."

If opioids excite CNS functions, it can result in side effects like hyperalgesia (extreme sensitivity to pain), myoclonus (involuntary jerking of muscles), or seizures, in rare cases. Again, treatment involves decreasing the dosage or switching to another drug. "Benzodiazepine drugs (Valium) might be prescribed along with the painkiller, but doctors have to be very careful with the dosage because of possible additive effects of the opioid and the other drug," says Driver.

I know how hard this is right now frompersonal experience and te pain of losing my wife to this disease. She was not loopy but addicted to the pain meds and Morphine shots that she was able to request when she got them. She passed pwacefully alone in her hospital room unexpectedly with out me by her side because we did not expect this to hppen at this time. I am so sorry to hear of Your Father in laws condition and downhill turn. Spend what time you alll can with him and try to keep as comfortable as possible. Cherish every Day and Pray for tomorrow to be a better Day. I will say a prayer for you. Let us know whatever we can help with and we are always here for anything you may need right now. If you want to vent and rage type away. Lots of shouldders to cry on and Ears to listen to you and compassion to be dispersed.


april/03 Diagnosed adenocarcinoma NSCLC

1/20/2006 Admitted to hospital Respiratory distress

1/23/2006 Ran to the light and is waiting for us to be rejoined in the Kingdom Of Heaven Her journey is Over but mine lingers on for Now!!!

"Life Isn't always beautiful, But it's a beautiful ride" Gary Allen

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This is copied from other post return message by myself Couldn't move it all.

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I don't understand whay they cannot give him a CT of the brain. What could possibly happen? That is ridiculous. They just keep pumping him with pain medication. How much can a system take. No wonder he is loopy.

Ask them why he cannot have a CT. If as they say his days are numbered what harm could it do. It just might be the medication.

I do hope that bed opens up for him soon.

I am so sorry for all you and your family are going through.


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Please keep in mind that pain killers are given to patients to STOP PAIN. This is a medicial purpose. Many people confuse this with addiction, which it is not.

Many years ago, my MIL was dying of lymphoma. She did not want morphine at the end. None of us understood her thinking. She felt she would become an "addict." I guess she, in her mind, felt she would live and be addicted to morphine. Maybe it never occured to her that she wouldn't live. Just rambeling now, but, I have read articles about this and doctors are VERY strong about giving morphine to stop pain in cancer patients. They are NOT CONCERNED about creating addicts. They just want to ease their patients pain. One of their primary vows is "do no harm." I truly believe that oncologists stick to that vow. Addiction is defined as not being able to do without ------. Pain relief is a totally different animal. I also had an uncle who refused to take any medication. I couldn't understand that at all. He suffered something terrible. Why???

Pain is terrible and, I feel, should be avoided at all costs.


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As of right now, I'm having trouble understanding why they cannot do a scan to figure out if he has brain mets. There must be something that the doctors can do to figure out why he is all of a sudden "loopy."

In my opinion, it is so tactless for doctors to tell caregivers and patients how much time is left. " the days are numbered." The doctor couldn't figure out a nicer way of saying this?

I really do hope that a bed opens up for him soon and hopefuly the doctors there will be a little more proactive.



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I'm with the others for a Brain CT Scan, it's not invasive and if he's already being moved I don't see the logic of it all. I can tell you that pain medication management can be very tricky, sometimes unfortunately it takes trial and error. I remember when my dad was in terrible pain the first night he was in the hospital. He called saying he couldn't take it and wanted me to bring him home. I told him he had to trust the drs. and they would work it out, and they did. But also towards the end of my dads' life he was out of it, it wasn't just the drugs it was that he was at the end of his life. I hope your FIL isn't in any pain, I pray that something gets resolved for his comfort and peace of mind.


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