I'm sad to say that my father Guillermo Noyola succumbed to liver cancer yesterday morning. Yesterday was the end of his two year struggle for life full of up's and down's filled with so many emotions and feelings. My father continued to live productively for 15 months after initially being diagnosed with terminal liver cancer. During the last month his health deteriorated dramatically and as a result was bed ridden most of the time. Two days ago my dad drifted in an out of conciousness and his vital signs critically low. There was nothing more doctors could do to supress or aleviate his condition. It was at that point our family decided to ensure that he was pain free. A steady intake of morphine was administered and was continued until his passing. My father died at home surrounded by his loving family.
Doctors gave my father less than three months to live after his diagnosis. He left the hospital a "dying man", but he beat those odds. He even surprised and puzzled his doctors. His desire and will to live never flinched and was unmatched. A true fighter he battled till the bitter end.
I am so sorry about your mom. I wish knowing that other people are experienceing the same thing I am would help...it doesn't. My son has liver cancer, and was recently approved and then disapproved for transplant. He was disqualified when just prior to chemoembolism a CT scan showed his "cancer had exploded" and the tumor had grown to 6.6 cm. The tumor can not exceed 5 cm in size. Now we are desperatly trying to raise funds to send him to China where they will perform the surgery but it seems futile as I can see him deteriorating daily. I am heartbroken as all of you can understand. I appreciate finding this site as I think I will be needing it often from now until my son loses his fight. I fear this will be sooner than later. I hope your mom does not suffer.
"The true measure of man is the how they treat those who can do them absolutely no good"
I've been reading everyone's posts over the past few days. I've been absent from this forum for a while because it's been so hard to read what everyone's been going through and knowing that pretty soon I will be the one writing that my mother is gone.
My mother was diagnosed almost three years ago and she only started suffering from symptoms a few months ago. She started an oral chemo program and suddenly started to look and act like a cancer patient. My family knew that there was no real cure and the the past attempts at embolization were miracles, but they also took their toll. My mom made a last ditch effort and agreed to the oral chemo, but the tumors have grown. She likes to say she felt fine until she took the pills. It was obviously a case of the disese winning the battle.
My mom, once athletic and strong, now looks emaciated and weak. She is still beautiful to me, but I can see the veins on her face and her eyes are sunken. Her abdominal area, once perfectly flat, is now filled with fluid, which makes it difficult for her to eat. She forces herself to eat tiny meals throughout the day to fuel her red blood cells. But eating makes her tired.
Her legs are black and blue from the blood spills. And she is itching from the phantom toxins riddling her body. The doctor didn't warn her about the itching or any of the other symptoms. She was told that she would start to sleep more and possibly become less coherent and then it would basically be over. Sleep, actually, has been next to impossible as she is up most of the night clawing at her skin.
My husband finally told our children (7 and 9) what is happening. We couldn't keep it a secret anymore. They needed to know why their mother's mood swings were like a roller coaster and why I couldn't stop crying. That was difficult for them, but they've really got no understanding of what's going on. It will hit them after the fact, I'm sure. I make them speak to their grandmother on the phone as much as possible, but last night, my mom was too tired to finish the conversation. That upset me terribly.
Hospice may be coming in next week. My sister, who visits every day, can't be with my mother every minute. My brohter is torn between spending time with my mother and supporting my father. Additionally, my father may be battling his own form of cancer or something equally as serious. The tests so far have been inconclusive. I feel like I've been living my version of the Lifetime movie of the week.
I want to know what to expect, but I know that everyone is different. How can it get any worse than this? My mom is such a fighter. She loves life, but the past few months she has not been able to leave her apartment. That's not living and it has drained her will. She's also started to become more accepting of what's to come. The worst part is when she apologizes to me for something that is not her fault. She got liver cancer from a bad blood tranfusion decases ago. This was the fault of the blood banks and their lack of testing and that of some diseased alcoholic or drug user looking for a quick way to make money. How can she apologize for that?
I know I'm rambling. You'd think I'd have gotten used to the idea that the end is coming. I've had so much time to prepare, more than most. But the thought of losing my mommy is still as unbearable to me today as it was when I first got the news. It's nice ot know that I'm not alone in this.
My mother also was diagnosed with primary liver cancer. She is around 55.
And i think the main cause was that in countries of 3rd word, hepatisys B or C is common decease. My self i was sick by it when i was around 10.
Since the time I came to knew about my mom's decease , i search and read a lot from the internet.
Today i found this forum. I have read all the posts here.
Melanie, I would like to tell you that we are in the same situation , that i am also the oldest in the family, and i am also affraid of future, but reading your post i think i will think differently from how i am now.
Thank you for sharing.
I hope that we will be able to find some herbal medicine and it would help to relieve pain and prolong healthy life of my mom even for a little bit more.
I would like to start by saying that in this time when I feel quite alone, it is strangely comforting to read your stories as they have helped me in this difficult time that I am having.
My father was diagnosed with Liver (secondary) and Stomach (primary) cancer in November and the best estimate for his future was put at 6 months.
He's been given oral chemo treatment and this is now his 4th week on it and if successful it may extend the 6 months to a year but the liver cancer is not curable or operable we have been told. Added to that is that he is losing weight at a tremendous rate – in the last 2 weeks he has lost nearly 2 stone in weight and he wasn't overweight to start with, so I think the original estimate of 6 months will be nearer the mark.
Anyway, I'm starting to ramble - The reason for this post is that he lives nearly 350 miles away and obviously because of the distance I can't spend as much time as I would like to with him in order to keep him company ‘on this journey', we (wife & daughter) go down every 2 weeks but now he doesn't want us to go so often as he is very tired & being sick all the time, which is understandable but like I have already said I could never forgive myself if when he needs/wants me, I wasn't able to get there in time for the last few steps of his journey.
Can anyone give me any clue as to what to look for in his last few days for me to ensure that I can be there with him when he may need the company most. I've picked up the weight loss issue, being less coherent and sleeping a lot, but if there is anything else then I would be extremely grateful if someone could advise.
I am so sorry to hear about your father. Liver cancer is a long, grueling, sad road. My mother defied all the odds for over 2 years. In the last 6 months, my siblings and I started to notice a change. She had experienced two chemo embolizations and embarked on an oral chemo trial. It was brutal to say the least. She claimed the chemo brought on the acceleration of the disease, but we all knew she was fighting the clock. The side effects of the drug were similar to the symptoms of the disease, so it was often difficult to tell what was going on. You asked, so I am going to tell you what to expect.
The bruising on my mother's body was horrible. It didn't matter if she tripped or just crossed her legs, the bruise was the same..big, ugly and purple. She would bleed easily because her platelet count was low. Her abdomen swelled up and she found it difficult to eat, but she was a trooper and forced herself to eat small meals throughout the day. At first she allowed herself to walk a block or two, but in the last 2 months of her life, she only was able to walk from bed to kitchen.
As the toxins travelled through her body, she had difficulty making it to the bathroom in time. She was so tired. But the terrible itching made it difficult for her to sleep. She took sleeping aids, but they made her incredibly groggy and she lost days because she could barely lift her head up off the pillow. For the most part, she was lucid. Every once in a while we'd detect a non-sequitor, but then she'd be back with us and involved in the conversation.
In the last few days of her life, she needed a walker to make it to the bathroom. The walker wouldn't fit through the door and she actually fell three times, once into the bathtub. It was a bloody mess and she was incredibly lucky she didn't break anything. At that point, she was basically sleep walking.
We kept morphine in the house in anticipation of the pain we were expected she'd feel. But she never let it get that bad. My siblings and I believe she actually controlled when she would leave us. She had started to lose her dignity and that was unacceptable to her. the whole thing sweas very fast. We were with her on Saturday, d uring which she spent most of the day sleeping. My brother recalls a conversation about who she considered to be the best "James Bond". I was with her for several hours and left to go home. I thought about staying, but went home ot my family. Obviously, I can not go back and change my course of actions. The next morning I got a phone call from my brother imploring me to get back to my parents' apartment immediately. I was there within an hour and a half. My mom was in a coma. I was able to tell her everything I felt and then she stopped breathing.
For the rest of my life I will remember my mother's commitment to parenting and her undying love for me. She waited for me.
For your sake, and you family's, I hope your father does not suffer much. Spend as much time with him as you can. Do not leave anything left unsaid. This disease ravages people. It moves mercilessly.
I'm so, so sorry about your mom. I've been thinking about you lately and wondering how you were doing. Your post brought tears to my eyes. I can just feel the pain in your post. Liver cancer or any cancer for that fact is a thief. A filthy, disgusting thief that steals life. It sneaks up and robs us of the people we love. My mil has just recently been dx'd terminal and now my husband is dealing with what I dealt with just a bit over a year ago. My little boy is petrified that I'm going to get cancer. It just sucks.
Again, I'm really sorry about your mom. She sounded like such a sweet lady. God bless.
proud daughter of Paul.
Hepatocellular carcinoma w/mets to the lungs.
It was great to hear from you again. Thanks for your kind words. I am so sorry to hear about your mother-in-law. This disease just takes it's toll on everyone. I'm sure your son is terrified. It's too soon to have to be suffering thorugh this again. I can't even begin to make suggestions to you about how to help him. Just tell him you love him and hold him tight.
Unfortunately, for me, I have not been allowed to rest and mourn my mother. My father now has pancreatic cancer. He was about to undergo the Whipple procedure, which is a very taxing procedure not unlike gastric bypass. The doctors went in to perform the surgery and discovered the cancer had metastasized and was now in the liver.
This is not an unfamiliar enemy, but my father is not the fighter my mother was. He is lonely and hurting and scared. Pancreatic cancer goes hand in hand with depression. Chemo is merely palliative, so I am living in a world of deja vu. A few weeks ago my father was given 8 months to a year to live.
I feel as though I am living out a Lifetime Movie of the week. I ask myself how it can be possible that my siblings and I will be orphans inside a year. I have friends praying for me and for a miracle. I have become angry and sarcastic. How can any God allow this to happen? How can this experience make me stronger? What kind of test have I failed to have to live through this again, when the memories are still so strong?
I don't understand this disease. I want scientists to put pancreatic and liver cancer at the top of their lists. Why is it only those who are left behind who seem to understand how deadly this disease is? There is no way out. It's an automatic death sentence for everyone affected, directly or otherwise.
Jen, please know that I am thinking of you. Be strong for your son and your husband. You can do it. You know what to expect. There will be no surprises. Just hang in there and love your family.