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Questions, need your input and help PLEASE!!!! UPDATED


MsC1210

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Hello again.

I spoke to Mom this morning and Jerry is doing "ok". We are in the northeast and being blanketed with the incredibly hot and humid air, so I was almost surprised when she said he was doing "ok". She said she has the A/C on and fans going and he is on the sofa watching tv and sipping Gatorade. A simple solution to his dislike of plain water!

Mom asked me to post and get some ideas from all of you about what type of things she can do after the bronchoscopy tomorrow. One thing I mentioned to her was to ask about a feeding tube since he is not able to eat much and his weight is continuing to decrease. Right now he is hovering somewhere around 100lbs. I know there have been a couple of members who have had the feeding tube inserted on a short term basis and I'd love to be able to share those stories with her and Jerry.

One new development, not too surprising really, is that he started coughing up some blood Friday. This is the first noticeable blood he has had. I am so glad that they are doing the procedure tomorrow.

It was mentioned in one of my other posts that Jerry should qualify for palliative care. I did some research on that before I mentioned it to Mom as I did NOT want to toss out the Hospice word to her and get her mind going in that direction. This morning I was able to introduce that thought to her, mentioning that he may benefit from having a nurse make home visits to check on his hydration, etc and be able to set up an IV if needed. I pointed out to her that this service would make things so much easier for her AND Jerry as it would potentially eliminate the need to drive to Albany in a crises. She agreed and said she would talk to the local doctor about this. We DID talk about hospice, too and she is aware of the services they provide. I have to be so careful bringing ANY of this up as I don't want to put the wrong idea in her head. It is such a stressful time as this is Mom's first time actually dealing with any type of cancer. I had the whole experience of going through this with Brad, but never shared all of his ordeal with her. I have a bit of an idea of what we have ahead, she is clueless.

So, I guess the whole point of this post is to get advice and input that I can print out and share with Mom. I am so grateful, in advance for all of your help.

Hugs to all,

Chris

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Ok I get to share some neat Medical news with you about weight loss. THis si a very important issue with LC patients. Here is my most recent medical discovery! Hope it helps. Can not share with Feeding tube cause we never had to use one!

A group of patients with advanced gastrointestinal or lung cancer was randomly selected to receive either MA alone, or a combination of olanzapine and MA. The patients were evaluated at four weeks and eight weeks and the results showed that patients receiving MA plus olanzapine had significant improvements in weight gain, appetite, nausea and quality of life measures. Patients receiving the MA alone experienced weight gain, but there was no significant change in appetite, nausea or quality of life measures, suggesting that the combination of olanzapine and MA appears to be an effective intervention for patients with CRA.
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I don't have much input, but I know my mom was dehydrated a lot on chemo and got hydration IVs which helped a lot. If he doesn't drink a lot and needs to be hydrated, she went a few times a week.

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Chris-

Cannot help you with the feeding tube question as I never had the need for you. My bronchoscopy really went like a piece of cake and I had no issue from it except a constant on and off bloody nose in the nostril they used (they went up my nose not down my throat).

I am so glad for all of you that tomorrow is going to be the day and you will finally be able to get some answers to your questions. Will be thinking of all of you and praying for the best.

Hugs - Patti B.

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Hi, Chris.

I had bronchoscopy and it didn't affect my ability to eat at all (I recovered fully within hours). If possible, I would try to avoid feeding tube, for two reasons: (1) it can aggravate/irritate his throat, esophagus, etc. and end up with a whole new set of side effects to deal with; and (2) the more "normal" his life is (and feeding tube is NOT normal), the greater, the quality of his life, and the better his health.

If he liks the Gatorade, that should take care of the dehydration problem.

As to food, at this point, the concern shouldn't be with whether he's eating healthy, but whether he's eating at all. Does he have a sweet tooth? Ice cream? Peanut butter and jelly? Cookies, pies, cakes? (Anything to get that weight back up!)

Sorry I can't be of more help, but onestep at a time.

Carole

Life is a Terminal Condition

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Randy thank you for that piece. I tracked it down hoping to learn more but was not successful. If you have more informaiton I would really appreciate it. I did print that bit out and will give it to Mom to discuss with the doctors.

Carole. the reason we are looking for information about a feeding tube is that the weight loss issue is severe at this point. Jerry is not opposed to the idea as he is aware he needs to get his strength up in order to be able to fight this with any degree of success. It is only a temporary thing to help get him back on his feet. I know there had been a couple of members a while back that had this done and they were very, very glad they did as it gave them the edge so to speak.

Everyone.... today is the day. And, it almost got lost in the frenzy, today is Jerry's actual 71st birthday. Praying so hard that he gets some good news and some serious relief for the breathing issues,as there could be no greater or better gift. As I type this, the procedure SHOULD be ongoing. I will post more later when I hear from Mom. In the meantime thank you all for your replies. I am really still hoping to hear from those who have done the feeding tube.. Will do a search and see if I can find those memnbers.

Chris

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H Chris,

Happy Birthday to your stepdad Jerry!

I hope you can find more info out on the information Randy gave to you. That sounds pretty promising.

As far as the feeding tube you will have to discuss that with his doc to see what he thinks. I know it is only temporary so that part is good. I don't think it will affect the throat as it is inserted into the stomach. (I think)

Keep us posted and I pray for good news.

Maryanne

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Hi Chris,

After my treatment I deal with the same issues you speak of..I could not eat and could not drink enough water to keep hydrated. My problem was largely due to the radiation burns.

I do know that without the feeding tube, I would not have survived!!!!! I would have died. You can not live if you are not eating and drinking. Your body has to have nourishment. I had the tube for two months and it was a godsend. I immediately felt felt and started to get some energy back.

It is recommended that you continue to eat while you have the tube and I did this. The problem comes in with losing your muscle memory with swallowing.

If I had to have a feeding tube again I would get another.

I hope this helps!!

God Bless!!

p.s. I could also take all of my pain meds through the tube. I would feed during the night.

Oh yes, the peg tube is inserted in the stomach. It is an outpatient procedure.

Jamie

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Hi Everyone..

Well the news is mixed tonight. Mom and Jerry got to the VA Hospital at 8am and the doctor came in around 9. He took a look at Jerry and said there is NO WAY he could do the procedure today as Jerry is just too weak and was not going to be able to withstand it. UGH UGH UGH. The doctor decided MAYBEEE he would send him back to the ER and rehydrate him then send him home again. Mom and Jerry's son who was there stepped in and said NO! After some words about that Jerry did get admitted.

Tomorrow he will be seen by and ear,nose and throat specialist to evaluate his inability to speak or swallow and then he will be having a full body scan (not sure exactly what type of scan, Mom was so tired she was having trouble reading her notes) and if he is not able to endure the bronchoscopy they will do a needle biopsy. So MAYBE, just MAYBE we will eventually find out what type of lung cancer this is.

Mom said it has been a constant parade of doctors in and out all day and there seems to be a good chance that they will be starting chemo and/or radiation within the next day or 2.

I will post again tomorrow when I am more able to compose my thoughts a little better.

Jamie, THANK YOU SO MUCH!! Yours was the feeding tube post I was thinking of and could not find!!!!! I will get into all of that tomorrow too!

Thanks so much for all of the thoughts and prayers, please keep them coming..

Hugs

Chris

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