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Eating after radiation,chemo,pain meds


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Dear Members, I hope this is the place to come for guidence. My sister is not eating and she just is not eating enough, just picking. Can the person overcome this, or does she need family to lovingly guide her. I am far away, and I'm wordering if a nurse sent home with her, will guide her. I know this eating problem is up to her system, that her body will take the posions out, by drinking I think, I could be wrong,please help me. She has primary lung cancer and secondary cancer cells on knee. I just feel she didn't follow,what to eat because of chemo that made her lung cancer stable, and then found out due to painful leg, she had cancer cells in her leg, now her knee only. I feel so helpless in not being there when she started chemo, I realize now the chemo was making her pick at food, and know she lost alot of weight when its needed to cope with the radiation she got. Please help me to understand what I can do and not be able to do.

She is 65,was in critical care due to heart, and now she is in progressive care unit stable.

Sincerely Teardrop

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The Best thing You can do is to make sure she has snacks and food available 24 hours a day 7 days a week. THese can be anything she likes. Soups, Snacks, Protein shakes, anything soft is better, as hard things may be difficult to chew. With all this going on a Cancer patient has to be able to eat when SHE wants to eat. Not when the hospital wants her to eat.. I used to make eggs and sausage at 3 in the morning for My Late wife, cause thats what she wanted when she wanted it. not at a set time.

Hugs and Prayers For all of the Family!!

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Ditto to what Randy said! It really helped me to eat every couple of hours. I just snacked all the time. Foods I could tolerate one day I couldn't stand the next. For some reason I liked fruit juice, green olives, all kinds of dairy, lots of crackers. It's just whatever sounds good to her. If she can only eat a couple of bites, Great! In an hour or so bring her a couple of more bites. Also all the drinks, Boost , Ensure stuff like that. Some of my favorite all times food just the smell made me sick! So you can't force her to eat, but you can try and help her find something she can get down. Good Luck!

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For what it's worth, I just plain could not eat for over a year. I started out with chemo and radiation at the same time and the radiation wiped out my esophagus. That problem caused an inability to swallow hardly anything without pain. Then, I lost my sense of taste to the chemo so all my food tasted just bad. I got through that by basically living on ice cream and cream filled pastries. Through it all, I lost about fifty pounds in that first year.

I still have occasional swallowing problems and my taste buds have never really stabilized. I'll enjoy something for perhaps several months and then quit it overnight. I have managed to gain most of my wait back, as much as I want anyway. It really frustrates my wife because we only shop a couple times a month and when we do, we load up. She'll have a freezer or refrigerator full of what I liked last month and then I won't or can't eat it anymore.

I kind of got off point here, which I usually do. That point was to understand what's going on and help her choose the things she can eat and not necessarily what she should eat. My oncologist and nutritionists used to argue over my diet. One was trying to keep me alive and the other was trying to make me healthy.

I went with the "eat anything I could get in and down" plan. Dairy Queen worked for me.

We'll all be pulling for you both.


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