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Palliative Radiotherapy

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AsleepInYorkshire
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Palliative Radiotherapy

#416278

Postby AsleepInYorkshire » May 30th, 2021, 8:12 pm

Last Thursday my Mum began palliative radiotherapy for lung and lymphatic cancer. She was originally due to start chemotherapy and radiotherapy and subject to the results have an operation to remove part of her lung. However, a last minute scan revealed the cancer had spread and cure was no longer an option. To clarify Mum had lung cancer which then metastasised to her lymphatic system. My good lady was with Mum when she was told about this.

I've tried reading a few medical websites to understand this in more depth. I've not had a great deal of success. I understand that they aren't able to cure her illness and are now managing her symptoms. Mum's either in denial or being stoic about the situation and has mentioned she will be glad when the cancer has gone.

She's only had two sessions so far. She's been looking more and more frail over the last three or four months and when we visited her today she looked very frail. I think she has 12 sessions of radiotherapy planned.

We've not been given any other information.

Is it a case of wait and see how the radiotherapy goes or are timelines closer than we realise?

AiY

oldapple
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Re: Palliative Radiotherapy

#416302

Postby oldapple » May 31st, 2021, 1:31 am

AiY, I'm very sorry to read that your mum has cancer, a worrying time indeed. My mother developed lung cancer too, despite never having been a smoker, and went through radiotherapy treatment for around 10 weeks (back in December 2019/Jan 2020). She was told that the treatment would leave her feeling extremely tired, and so it proved to do, leaving her frail and gaunt looking. Subsequently, her health recovered somewhat but, as looks to be the case with your mum, the radiotherapy didn't stop the spread completely. It may have bought her some time - but later radiotherapy was offered only to 'manage' the spread, not to cure it. I doubt anyone will give you a timeline, the doctors/nurses don't know and if your mum is like mine, she'll defy and confound anyone who thinks they can make a prediction, and she'll probably hang on to the hope of recovery. But, I lost my mum in April this year. Many best wishes for you and your mum.

AsleepInYorkshire
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Re: Palliative Radiotherapy

#416325

Postby AsleepInYorkshire » May 31st, 2021, 9:44 am

oldapple wrote:AiY, I'm very sorry to read that your mum has cancer, a worrying time indeed. My mother developed lung cancer too, despite never having been a smoker, and went through radiotherapy treatment for around 10 weeks (back in December 2019/Jan 2020). She was told that the treatment would leave her feeling extremely tired, and so it proved to do, leaving her frail and gaunt looking. Subsequently, her health recovered somewhat but, as looks to be the case with your mum, the radiotherapy didn't stop the spread completely. It may have bought her some time - but later radiotherapy was offered only to 'manage' the spread, not to cure it. I doubt anyone will give you a timeline, the doctors/nurses don't know and if your mum is like mine, she'll defy and confound anyone who thinks they can make a prediction, and she'll probably hang on to the hope of recovery. But, I lost my mum in April this year. Many best wishes for you and your mum.

I'm so sorry and deeply saddened to hear the devastating news about your Mum's passing. Thank you for finding the time and strength to post. You've been very kind. It has helped me enormously. I'm very grateful and greatly appreciate what you have said.

My Dad passed away in 1990. Mum's never remarried or had another partner. My sister and her children live in Australia. That leaves me and my cousin (the closest I have to a brother) to be the dumb waiters in all this. I use that term very much tongue in cheek as my Dad told me the time would come when I had to behave like a dumb waiter. Hear all, see all, say nothing and keep the food flowing :)

Take very good care

AiY

88V8
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Re: Palliative Radiotherapy

#416338

Postby 88V8 » May 31st, 2021, 10:45 am

Thankfully palliative care has become quite a sophisticated branch of medicine. At one time there would have been little or nothing bar pain management.

My MIL was a life-long smoker. FIL hated it but she would never give up.
Then, late in life, she did.
Then a year or so later she started again.
And then admitted that she had lung cancer.

She never discussed it but we presume.... she'd stopped when the cancer was diagnosed... told no one... then started again when she knew it was incurable.

My mother had breast cancer. It returned after 34 years' remission, was fended off for a further five years then became metastatic.

In each case they died peacefully after a short stay in hospital. Whether with in-care or MacMillan they seem to manage these things fairly well nowadays.

It's good that your mother is soldiering on.
So long as she wants to sing lalala and live forever, I think your 'dumb waiter' approach is a wise and kind one.

V8

PhaseThree
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Re: Palliative Radiotherapy

#416346

Postby PhaseThree » May 31st, 2021, 11:13 am

I went through this when my father was diagnosed with metastatic prostrate cancer. No-one can give you a precise answer as to how much time she has left but you can look at the statistics. Figures are typically quoted for the 5 year survival rates for cancers at different stages of development. Metastatic cancer is stage-4.

Try starting here :-
https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/about- ... r/survival


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