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Questions regarding Radiation- Please help!!


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Hi Everyone,

I hope everyone is doing well!! Thinking of all of you...I havent been on in a bit. I had a quick question hopefully someone can help me. My mom was diagnosed with brain & lung cancer last year, had tumor removed in brain, no brain cancer since...so thankful for that... the doctors decided to treat the other tumors in her lung with chemo..she has been doing that for some time and has been so very successfull!! again so thankful.. her last visit the doctor said she has no cancer in her body. no tumors execept 1 in the lung that had died from the inside out, and has been there for a few months... so since no more active cancer the doctor wanted her to start radiation just to get rid of the dead tumor in the lung. she is on her second week of radiation.. do it everyday for five weeks or maybe six.....she is still continuing her chemo because is has been worked and has no side effects from it...since day one on chemo she did great, not sick or having any side effects, except being tired of course, and i think thats really catching up to her, b/c she get a steriod during chemo and that keeps her up for one to two nights... the doctor gave her ambien to help her sleep, and that helps a little, but the first night after chemo she ever rarely sleeps at all...OK so this is her second week of radiation...and i'm so concerned, of course she is more tired, but still be such a trooper....def napping a lot and the past few days she has been saying wierd things and forgets things....for example, she called me the other day and was very tired you can hear it, and told me she had her chemo and radiation and they did the blue cross blueshield test... I said mom thats your health insurance and she said i dont know forget it.... she didnt have any testing done that day..... and then today she babysat my boys with my dad of course.... and got confused when trying to tell me what they ate, and how much and etc.... then she feed them with me while i was with her, then the next hour told me to get the bottles to feed them again.. but we just fed them... My dad said the past few days she put the coffee on and forgot to get it. My dad said that she is just so drained and exhausted from chemo and radiation now on top of it, especially that she is going in for radiation every day and chemo on fridays..... Is this normal? is she just so exhausted? or can this be a side effect from the radiation? I only noticed this after radiation.....so trying to figure out is it b/c its tiring her out completely and kicking her butt and she's just out there right now or is it damaging her memory and etc... it broke my heart today.....I have been so happy thankful and grateful that she is cancer free and doing so great and kicking this cancers butt but today i left her home so sad and confused myself... can someone help explain why this is happening? or what your thoughts are? My dad will speak to doctor on Monday...I'm so scared b/c we have been so lucky this year and she took so well to the treatments and etc with no side effects, she really impressed everyone with her success and then to all of a sudden see her so confused its alarming...the only differenc is she started radiation..... Thank you so much for listening, this is the only place I talk about this.... I appreciate everyones support. Thank you again

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It must be really scarey to see your mom so exhausted. It sounds as though you are saying she had chemo only and now is having chemo and radiation concurrently. I can only speak personally to having chemo and radiation concurrently (that was my first treatment plan). It does cause a fatigue that is really hard to describe to someone who hasn't been there. I thought that the fact that your mom could babysit (even with your dad) was amazing. I could barely get out of bed and get clothes on to go to the radiology center every day - and when people talk about chemo brain, it really does exist. Is your Mom taking any other drugs - I would assume she is. One woman I drove to chemo would take Ativan and become very confused and sleepy - much more so than normal. However, everyone is different and you are obviously worried about your mom's symptoms. It's good that your father will be talking with the doctor Monday - is there any chance you could go with him and get your questions answered?

Please let us know how your Mom is doing.


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Hi Katie,

Thank you for responding to my post. Its very much appreciated. Yes, my mom has brain scans every few months b/c she had brain cancer last year. THey did an MRI last year b/c her sight was bothering her, and it revealed a brain tumor, which soon revealed her lung cancer.... She has been brain cancer free since last October almost 1 year(yay!!) she also had radiation on the brain last year after the surgery to make sure they got everything... she just had her brain scan a few weeks ago and everything looked great the doctor said :) She was taking the ambien, which she just stopped about a week ago. I believe they see the radiologist on Thursday. My dad is handeling everything, which could be frustrating b/c i really wanted him to just let the doctor know yesterday (monday) when she had her treatment. So he will speak to doctor this thursday. My dad insists on babysitting one day a week its for 3 hours at my parents house. Its funny b/c he has been so hands on since day 1. He said he likes to have them over to cuddle with grandma and lift her spirits. I think it gets his mind off of everything going on as well. My mom has three weeks left of radiation. Not sure if they will continue it if the tumor didnt vanish, b/c its dead anyway and has been for a bit. I have never seen her this tired, and weak. Just praying she regains her strength back and feels better soon! Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge.

Thanks :)

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I have not had radiation myself, just chemo, but I agree with Katie to be sure to let your mom's doctor know of all her symptoms. Cancer treatment is stressful no matter what type it is and this is tiring both mentally and physically. I have a friend who went through radiation and she found it very fatiguing. Be there for your mom and try to see that she gets as much rest and as little stress as possible. If you get too worried before her next appt, you can always have yourself or your dad make a call to the doctor's office to ease your mind, and to be sure what is happening is what they would expect. My doctor is used to hearing from me and told me it is never a "bother" when I call because the patients are the reason for his job.

Best wishes


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Hi Susan,

Thanks for posting something. My dad is going to see the radiologist tomorrow (thursday) so he is going to mention all the symptoms she has been having. I will remind him tonight, his style is a little more laid back then mine. But I have to say he has taking such great care of her, and always seems to know when something is crucial and etc. My family & I live on long Island and they travel into NYC everyday. I think the traveling is draining for my mom. She usually naps in the car. I spoke to her this morning, she sounded good, said she felt better but thats my mom she dosnt want anyone to know if she is suffering...She finishes radiation in October, I think the second week. Cant wait for that!! THanks again for your support and kind words... We will see what the radiologist says and keep staying positive!!!!

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