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update and question about mom

Guest luannie

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Guest luannie

my mom, age 77, was diagnosed with nsclc about six weeks ago. she had a pet scan and has mets to the brain, bone, adrenal, and lymph glands. she has had about 10 treatments of whole brain radiation so far. she has had carboplatin, taxol, and zometa once a week for three weeks and next week will be her week off. she is such an amazing woman and so far she is handling it all really well. she is starting to lose her hair and today has been complaining of sensitivity to her head. does anyone know if this is an effect of the radiation? she also seems to be losing some of her memory. again, radiation or chemo effect? and i was wondering if all these effects go away once treatment is over or if they will be permanent. thanks for your help.

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Hi Luannie,

Yes, the things your mom is going through are normal. My husband lost his hair on about the 8th or 9th WBR treatment. His head got very, very dry and he had to use special lotion he got from the doctor during the radiation days, but after the treatments were all finished, they told him he could use Grandma's Lard if he wanted to. :lol: My husband also had some other problems during and after the WBR. I don't think I could say he had "memory" problems, but he was definitely slower to respond to things for a while. He just didn't seem to be able to get the words out like he normally could. I think this probably lasted for maybe 4-6 weeks after the WBR, and then it went away.

Others have had a variety of different reactions to WBR, and I'm sure you will get more responses in the next day or so.

Please keep us posted about how your mom is doing, and also about yourself.

God bless you,


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Hey, Luannie,

My husband Dave had PCI (the preventative brain radiation) which is a much "milder dose" of radiation than WBR and he had all of those same symptoms. His radiation oncologist gave him a tub of 100% Aloe gel, I doubt you can even buy this stuff retail and it's very expensive, that stuff really helped with both his PCI and his chest radiation. Ask them about it. He is only 39 and had the memory loss, etc. Again, talk to the radiation oncologist AND the regular oncologist about the permance of these things. Dave gradually improved over time but he's in chemo again . . . . anyway, I would talk to the docs about these things, could be that older people may be more susceptible to it being permanent than younger folks. But for the short term at least, all of these symptoms sound "reasonable" to me.

Please keep us posted and know we'll keep your mom in our prayers. she sounds like a strong woman and a fighter.

God Bless,

Karen C.

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Guest luannie

mom's cancer has been such a shock and so heartbreaking. i've been trying to read up on everything and become educated with regard to treatment options, treatment effects etc. i really appreciate your care, concern, and prayers. i believe it helps talking to people who are going through some of the same things. living about 5 hours away and not being there with her every minute is especially difficult for me. i have been visiting as much as possible and plan on going again in a few days for a week or so. i will make sure and speak to the oncologist as well as the radiation oncologist when i am there. i'm trying very hard to be strong for my folks and trying to take it one day at a time as that seems to be all we have right now.


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I'm sorry you don't live closer to your parents. After only six weeks, especially living a halfday away, you're still likely numb about your mom's diagnosis. I can sense your frustration and your love for your mom.

With your mother's permission, her doctors can speak with you and answer your questions if you feel you're not getting the information you need from your mom about her treatment and response. The more information you have specifically about where she is and what's going on with treatments the closer you will feel to being on top of things yourself.

And that should make you feel somewhat better.

I'll say a special prayer for your mom and for you. This emotional roller coaster is a wild ride, so hang on. We're all here if you need us...


Prayers always,..


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