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Thread: Can someone describe end stage myeloma for me?

  1. #1
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    Can someone describe end stage myeloma for me?

    My 89 yr old dad has MM and is progressing to end stages. Can anyone out there tell me what to expect? Broken bones, kidney failure, ??? Drs say he has less than 6 months since we just stopped chemo which he could not tolerate. Any info/insight would be appreciated! Thank you.

  2. #2
    Administrator Top User brainman's Avatar
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    Hi Katie. I am very sorry about your father's MM. My father-in-law died of it 6 years after being diagnosed. What will happen doing the end stage really depends on which organs are affected and the patient's other health issues. Respiratory issues, heart problems, kidney failure, and/or liver failure are all possible. Broken bones are possible especially if he falls. My FIL just got weaker and weaker with increased breathing problems. His heart just finally gave out. I am sorry that your father is going down this road now. You and he are in my thoughts and prayers.
    Jim
    Long-term cancer survivor
    1992 Astrocytoma grade 2, left motor strip
    2005 Recurrence this time said to be an Oligodendroglioma grade 3, same location.
    http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2405
    My Story Part 1: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2528
    My Story Part 2: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?p=7350
    My Story Part 3: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=8029

  3. #3
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    My father, 76, died of multiple myeloma on Jan 30, 2011, exactly eleven months after he was diagnosed with the deadly disease. In Jan 2010, he complained of pain either on his ribs or back, mostly during nights. A few days later he could not stand up and his pain got even worse. In Feb end, my father developed kidney failure and was diognosed with multiple myeloma. After only two doses of dialysis, his kidneys started to function and he was put on chemotherapy with a regular dose of thalidomide. He could now walk a few steps and he did not need dialysis either. His oncologist was happy over his progress but the remission period lasted only until October when he again developed kidney complicatons. He was hospitalized and put on dialysis again. We took him to home in November and used to bring him back for dialysis twice a week. He got weaker and weaker after every dialysis. The doctor changed thalido with Revlomide, but to no avail. His blood counts started to fall sharply and he was hospitalised again in early January, which proved to be the toughest of times for the entire family. He needed blood every alternate day, sometimes platelets, sometimes packed cells and sometimes the whole blood. My father's white cells were almost non-existent when he died. He had developed sepsis infection and had been running high temperature over the last fifteen days. His appetite was zero. During dialyis his blood pressure used to drop drastically and he often started to shiver. When, he deid, he had been on oxygen for more than 48 hours, the heart rate fluctuating between 100 and 200 beats per minute. On the night of Jan 29, his blood pressure started to drop and he had breathing difficulty. Doctors injected life-saving drugs into his body only to extend his life for a few hours. He was extremely restless on that night. He fell unconscious in the afternoon on Jan 30 and breathed his last in peace. We never told him that he was suffering from cancer. My father helped people and never brought harm to anybody. It was the saddest day in our life. May God rest his soul in eternal peace.

  4. #4
    Administrator Top User pbj11's Avatar
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    Haroon,

    My condolences on the loss of your Father. Thank you for your willingness to share his story when I know how much pain you must be in right now.

    God bless,
    PBJ
    Husband diagnosed with NSCLC Stage IV in 3/2005. Fought & lived over 2 1/2 years with multiple lines of treatment.

    Post describing our journey: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.ph...er=asc&start=0

    Left my embrace to live with our Heavenly Father in October of 2007 and now breathes with ease forever. I will miss this gentle, giving soul with the easy smile for the rest of my days, but have faith we will be together again. He's just getting a little break from me!

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    I am returning to this thread after having visited while my mom was still alive. I found that there was very little information on how the end arrives and so I will describe the end for my mom's life. My mom was diagnosed with Stage 3 multiple myeloma in 2007. She went on Thalidomide with Steroids for two years and had very good results. the only really difficult side affect was the neuropathy in her hands. In time, her response to thalidomide lagged and the neuropathy really began to bother her. And so in approximately 2009 she went on valcade which was administered once a week for period, and then twice a week. Her counts continued to look good, although she felt pretty poorly over the last year. she began losing weight and lost her appetite. In January 2011 I went to visit her and accompanied her to her doctor's appointment. They told us that her counts were better than ever, that her cancer was stable, and they would be reducing her chemo back down to once a week. On this visit, my mom seemed very sick and startled easily. She began seeming confused and could not follow conversations. She did not have any renal involvement, nor did she suffer from hypercalcemia or anything else that could explain the confusion. Almost exactly one month later, my mom went in for routine tests and they found that her cancer counts had quadrupuled in one month. I had been talking to her every day since she had been sick and she could no longer communicate with me on the phone. I called her doctor and even at that point, her doctor did not let me know that my mom was near death, or that I should come quickly. Fortunately, as soon as we got the test results, I flew from Oregon to Arizona to see her. She was very confused. We admitted her into the hospital on Friday to see if she was dehydrated which could be causing the confusion. fluids had no impact. We brought her home and she died four days later, with her losing conciousness after being home for two days.Until one month prior her doctors were saying her counts looked great. But it was pretty clear she was getting sicker, regardless of what the counts said. So for what it is worth, that is what the end looked like for my mom.

  6. #6
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    Sorry to hear about your loss.

    Quote Originally Posted by Andreaog View Post
    I am returning to this thread after having visited while my mom was still alive. I found that there was very little information on how the end arrives and so I will describe the end for my mom's life. My mom was diagnosed with Stage 3 multiple myeloma in 2007. She went on Thalidomide with Steroids for two years and had very good results. the only really difficult side affect was the neuropathy in her hands. In time, her response to thalidomide lagged and the neuropathy really began to bother her. And so in approximately 2009 she went on valcade which was administered once a week for period, and then twice a week. Her counts continued to look good, although she felt pretty poorly over the last year. she began losing weight and lost her appetite. In January 2011 I went to visit her and accompanied her to her doctor's appointment. They told us that her counts were better than ever, that her cancer was stable, and they would be reducing her chemo back down to once a week. On this visit, my mom seemed very sick and startled easily. She began seeming confused and could not follow conversations. She did not have any renal involvement, nor did she suffer from hypercalcemia or anything else that could explain the confusion. Almost exactly one month later, my mom went in for routine tests and they found that her cancer counts had quadrupuled in one month. I had been talking to her every day since she had been sick and she could no longer communicate with me on the phone. I called her doctor and even at that point, her doctor did not let me know that my mom was near death, or that I should come quickly. Fortunately, as soon as we got the test results, I flew from Oregon to Arizona to see her. She was very confused. We admitted her into the hospital on Friday to see if she was dehydrated which could be causing the confusion. fluids had no impact. We brought her home and she died four days later, with her losing conciousness after being home for two days.Until one month prior her doctors were saying her counts looked great. But it was pretty clear she was getting sicker, regardless of what the counts said. So for what it is worth, that is what the end looked like for my mom.
    I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your mother. I too was diagnosed with stage 3 MM in January of 2010. I am currently not recieving treatment having responded well to Revlimid and radiation therapy. But a PET scan at Mayo in September revealed several "hot spots" and my blood chem indicated "whisps" of activity. So I am considering a stem cell transplant. I just wondered if your mother ever recieved one. I hear that they can prolong life quite a bit.

  7. #7
    Some additional stories are found in this earlier thread:
    http://www.cancerforums.net/threads/...What-to-Expect

  8. #8
    Regular User NSgal's Avatar
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    My father passed away from MM on August 31, 2010 after a two year battle. Initially my father was suffering from shoulder and back pain and was told he had arthritis. After several months of arthritis medication and his symptoms continuing to deteriorate my father was finally sent for a CT scan where MM was finally diagnosed. My father at this point was quite sick and hospitalized. He started his initial treatments and his cancer was in remission for a short period of time. In Sept. 2009 his health started to deteriorate quickly. He was in renal and heart failure and was only given a slight chance of living. By some miracle my father pulled through, but the last year of his life was a head one. He was immediately put on Velcade but after a few treatments my father wasn't tolerating it well. He suffered from extreme neuropathy and the treatments, although were killing the cancer cells were also killing all the good cells. My fathers counts for red and white blood cells were so low that my father couldn't function. His platelets were so low his blood wouldn't clot and he was suffering from hypercalcemia. He was in renal failure and was again hospitalized for a month receiving countless blood and platelet transfusions as well as white blood cell medication. He was monitored closely and my father chose not to go back on Velcade. He was perscribed predisone (?) which he took alone. He had about two good months after rebounding from his last hospitalization. In June of 2010 he again started to fail. All of the same problems as before. He was in and out of hospital and at that point started Revilimid but it was too late. The hardest part of all this was watching the person you love and would do anything for fade away. My father was great man with such a wonderful personality and sense of humor. The life of the party. His cancer took it all away. The last year of my fathers life was one of pain, sadness and depression. Toward the end of August 2010, my father again suffered renal failure. He was so weak he could not stand. He refused to eat and told me he knew it was the end. He needed blood and platelets every other day. During the two days before my dad's death he was extremely emotional and anxious as were we. The doctors prescribed Adavan to calm him. Once he took it he closed his eyes and peacefully went into a deep sleep. On the night of his death he woke briefly, looked around and then passed away. Nothing can really prepare you for the final stages. This cancer is relentless. I miss my father everyday and feel a piece of me died with him. My life will never be the same again. I am thankful for the time I had him. I was so lucky to call him my father and know one day we will be together again.
    Diagnosed Stage 2a colon cancer Nov. 2010 at age 39
    Resection Dec. 1, 2010
    No family history of CC
    Father passed away from Multiple Myeloma Aug. 2010

  9. #9
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    So sorry to hear of all of your stories, as Iam new to this, my 75 yr old mother was diagnosed last summer 3 months after ,y dad passed away suddenly from a massive heart attack. We were reluctant to put her on chemo, do we want quality or quantity of life? Observing her now going through nosebleeds and leg pain we made the decision to do the chemo, hoping it may help her for a while anyways. I'm still having a hard time with dad being gone and now mom,I dont know how much I can take or how to deal with this. I'm a married mother of 3 children ages 2.5 -12 yrs old. Any suggestions would help on what to expect and helping my mother die with dignity.

  10. #10
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    So very sorry to hear all of these sad stories. This cancer is relentless. My dad was almost 62 when he was diagnosed with MM at the end of March 2011. He just turned 63 a couple of weeks ago. We believe he is in the last weeks of his life.

    He had experienced pain in his lower back and hips for a few months, which wouldn't clear despite massage etc. He developed what we were told by 2 locums was a chest infection, very mucusy, vomiting, fever and went on for 3 weeks. This was the build up to his kidneys failing completely, which is when he was diagnosed with MM. He's been treated with a variety of drugs - Thalidomide, Prednisolone and is currently on Valcade twice a week but is not tolerating it well.

    For the last 6 weeks he's had chronic, explosive diarroeah, almost no appetite and is now unable to get out of bed at all. The last time he was out of bed was Friday 2 days ago trying to get to the commode next to his bed but he was too weak and sank to the floor. He is incontinent and wears adult nappies.

    He is skin and bone, his blood doesn't clot and he has wounds all the way up his arms. Last week on one occasion he was not able to have the Valcade as they couldn't find a vein to take his blood to check his numbers. His blood pressure was 105/35. The next day it was 135/something.

    He's being cared for at home by our wonderful mum.

    Despite knowing all of this, and that dad has no quality of life whatsoever, his doctors insist that his numbers are good and that he hasn't exhausted all his treatment options. Wtf? If they're planning a different treatment they'd want to do it pretty quickly.

    How long do you think my dad has left? The doctors won't give us any indication at all "because his numbers are so good". They don't seem to be able to see what dad is going through :O(

    Can anyone help?

 

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