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Being active...


Caren

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One of the main questions the Oncologist asked before agreeing to my dad having Chemo is 'How active are you?' We told the him that my dad walks almost half a mile each morning to our Village store and sometimes does the same in the afternoon. We said that he's fine with the stairs in the house too.

The Oncologist never explained why it's important to be active in order to have Chemo and I never asked.

But, for the past week my dad's activity levels have dropped to almost zero. His energy levels are so low that he has only left the house twice in the past 7 days and he seems to hold his bladder for longer, so that he doesn't need to use the stairs so often.

I'm worried now that this could have an effect on how well the Chemo will work.

I don't know if any of you will be able to answer this question, but I thought I would ask.

Oh and I have also requested that his GP prescribe some kind of nutritional drinks because my dad's appetite has dropped quite low and I don't want him losing weight if that can be avoided.

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Caren,

I'm not sure why, but my Mom's oncologist told her to walk, walk, walk. Even when she was in the hospital with an IV and a chest tube.

As far as the nutritional drinks go, my Mom hated the Boost and Ensure. But she would drink the Carnation Instand Breakfast shakes. You can get the powder to mix with any kind of milk. I used Lactaid since Mom was lactose intolerant.

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Caren, This is VERY NORMAL that he gets tired with his treatments. That chemo knocks us on our butts. Chemo is a POWERFUL POWERFUL med., so don't fret the small stuff. They tell us when we start our journey that we will lose energy and we will probably get very tired so please know this isn't going to change what the chemo does. His rest IS VERY important during this time as well. He's energy will come back when we completes his treatments.

They always hand out written info as to what to look for when a person is doing chemo's. Take a minute and read that over.

He's be fine. (((((((((CAREN))))))))))))

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Hi there. I have never been a big work out kind of person. I walked a bit before my diagnosis, did activities with my kids, skiid a little but overall probably low physical activity partly because I was/am a workaholic. But upon initial diagnosis I got into fight mode big time and decided to hit that treadmill big time and walk lots. I really really think that staying as active as possible really helped me through my first line treatment of chemo and radiation. Since I have developed spine mets though and have run into pain issues my physical activity level has dwindled. And 2nd line chemos have taken it out of me in a bigger way. I am just starting to gear up my level of physical activity again which tells me that my pain issues are getting better. Everyone is very different though in how they react to treatments. And we can only do what we can do. That said, I think it is very important to try and do some physical activity every day. Just do what you are able. Lung cancer hates oxygen.

So encourage your dad when he is able to get out and walk a bit like he used to. It may be challenging for him but overall I think it will improve his well being. You also reminded me of the performance status scale used to assess lung cancer patients. I have attached the link. I have also seen a simpler numeric one that my doctor uses. I hope your dad is feeling well enough to get out a bit more soon.

http://www.hospicepatients.org/karnofsky.html

Sandra

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