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Mom's latest symptoms


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Hi everyone,

It's been awhile since I first posted. Mom is finishing up her last chemo treatment next week (Alimta) for stage IV lung cancer.

All of the CT scans and MRIs show little change in her lung tumors and the diaphragm except that the tumor in her liver has responded - so for that little bit of good news, we are very thankful. The occipital tumor is the same since the gamma knife radiation last year.

I'm wondering if anyone can give me advice regarding the following - Mom keeps minimizing her symptoms whenever she & Dad see the oncologist.

Mom has been having urinary incontinency problems, especially at night, and during the last couple of months, she has been sleeping 12+ hours every night. She does use her walker, but her gait is getting worse re. the shuffling.

Her mood swings are awful - a lot of anger toward everyone - her memory is slipping, and I know she is suffering with anxiety. She has headaches, complains of dizziness, and has daily episodes of shakiness. She is suffering so much, but she just won't be honest with the specialists. Dad tries to interject his perspective at their appointments but Mom insists he is "exaggerating." She does not want anyone but Dad to accompany her to the oncologist appointments.

The only medication the oncologist is giving her is Tylenol #3, dexamethasone, and folic acid. I don't understand why the specialist isn't at least offering her something for her anxiety, but like I said, she is very convincing when it comes to minimizing her symptoms and making Dad sound like he is an alarmist or something.

Sorry to keep rambling here, but the other thing that concerns me is on her latest CT scan, the radiologist noted normal pressure hydrocephalus. I did some searching about NPH, and the symptoms match up with Mom's. The oncologist, however, dismissed them and instead is now recommending physical therapy. (?!) I don't get it. She can barely stand up without help, so Dad and I are wondering what a physical therapist is going to be able to do??

If anyone has any suggestions I'd really appreciate it. Thanks so much.


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