Everything Tastes Bad, Smells Bad, no Appetite

9 Posts | Page(s): 1 

Everything Tastes Bad, Smells Bad, no Appetite

by Helpless on Mon Apr 24, 2006 12:00 AM

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Hi to Everyone I am new to this. We had found out that my mother had a brain tumor after suffering a seizure. The Neurosurgeon had told us that according to her MRI that the tumor was benign and on the surface and could easily be removed. They told us that she could return to her normal activities after the surgery. She had the surgery on March 24th, and we were then told that 80% could only be removed and that it was cancer. The diagnosis is anaplastic astrocytoma WHO III. The doctor said with radiation therapy he could put it in remission. Since the surgery she has had trouble hearing from her left ear. She has no taste in her mouth. Everything tastes and smells bad. She has to force herself to eat which in turn makes her feel very sick. We keep asking the doctor and he keeps telling us that it is from the surgery and will take time. Meanwhile my mother cries all the time. She awakes in the morning with a bad taste in her mouth, and very dry. It is tearing me up inside. I am strong in front of her trying to get her thru everyday, but when I am alone I breakdown. I wish I could get some answers as to whether she will be able to eat again. Maybe if she could taste and eat again she would have a better outlook.

Bad Tastes

by Brainychick on Mon Apr 24, 2006 12:00 AM

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Is your mom undergoing radiation treatments at all? I didn't have bad tastes or smells after surgery, but have had them since my radiation treatments. I don't drink a lot of plain water because it tastes bad to me. Instead, I drink lots of flavored waters and gatorade. As for food, it actually helps me to eat foods with strong flavors. The flavor of the food masks the nasty taste in my mouth.

Bad Taste in Mouth, Can't Eat

by Helpless on Mon Apr 24, 2006 12:00 AM

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My mother just started radiation therapy on April 20th. She also has to take a chemo pill called Temador. She has had the bad taste and not been able to eat since the surgery on March 24th. I'm afraid that when they removed the tumor something was damaged. But they still insist that she will get her taste back. I guess I have to trust in what the doctor is saying, but seeing my mother cry everyday is making me very very sad. She said the only thing that was tasting like it should was an apple, but now that taste in gone. She also cannot smell like she used to. Everything smells bad. They tried giving her Megastrol to try to increase her appetite. That didn't work because it really isn't her appetite its the fact that everything tastes bad or has no taste. I try to keep telling her to think positive. Maybe after the radiation therapy things will start getting better. I pray for this everyday.

Re: Everything Tastes Bad

by Loving_Husband on Mon Apr 24, 2006 12:00 AM

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My wife went through the bad taste in her mouth too. She described everything as tasting "tinny". It turned out to be oral thrush as a result of the medications. With a prescription antibiotic mouthwash she was able to clear it up in a couple of weeks. We were told that this is very common.....

Everything Tastes Bad, Smells Bad, Etc...

by caring_daughter on Mon Apr 24, 2006 12:00 AM

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Dear Barbara, I am very sorry to hear that your mom is going thru this journey that turns your entire world upside down. My dad was diagnosed with a brain tumor (GBM IV) on Aug. 29, 2005. He has endured surgery (90% was removed), radiation therapy, 42-days of concurrent Temodar use, and hass now completed his fifth cycle of "double dose" temodar. Like your mom, he has said that everything tastes "metallic", that nothing smells good and that nothing sounds appetizing. He has had two incidents of thrush, which can be successfully treated with Diflucan. Also, he drinks a daily boost (nutritional supplement). His tastes change daily, which means my mom is cooking many different things to see what will taste good to him. He enjoys eggs right now. We have found that giving him small frequent meals and snacks have helped. Does your mom take any medication with the Temodar to offset any nausea? Initially, my dad took compazine 30 minutes before temodar. Now, on the higher dose of Temodar, he takes zofran 16 mg. Would your mom be able to try smoothies, soups, applesauce? It is a guessing game for sure because what tastes good one day, could be revolting the next. This is a new situation for you, Barbara, so be sure to ask questions. This is also a scary situation for your mom. This diagnosis is a lot to handle especially if your mom is young and was independent prior to her surgery. Be hopeful. My dad was placed on Prozac to help offset any symptoms of depression after surgery. This seems to have helped him adjust to many changes. I have found my connections on this message board a life line of support. Take good care, Rondi

Everything Tastes Bad, Smells Bad, Etc

by Helpless on Mon Apr 24, 2006 12:00 AM

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Dear Rondi, Thank you so much for your response. My mother was diagnosed with anaplastic astrocytoma WHO III. My mother has always been healthy, she very rarely even got a cold, so all of this has been a shock to all of my family. My mother is so scared and cries most of the time. I am so torn up inside, it hurts to see her like this. Her primary care doctor has given her Xanax to help with her depression. My mother is 65 and has always been on the go. She is so frustrated that she can't do what she used to do. She had 80% of the tumor removed and has just started radiation therapy on April 20th. She takes Temodar along with an antibiotic so she won't get pneumonia. I had called the oncologist to tell him my mother was vomiting very much the first day she took the Temodar. He prescribed medicine to help and it has. You had talked about thrush. I don't know what this means, would you explain this to me. My mother for a couple of days enjoy a grill cheese sandwich with tomato, now she can't eat it. I bought her Ensure to drink yesterday, she seems okay to drink it. She will go thru radiation for 6 weeks and she also will take Temodar for 42 days. I am also sorry to hear that your Dad is going thru this also. We just have to take each day as they come, and always keep a positive outlook. Take care, Barbara

Everything Tastes Bad, Smells Bad, Etc.

by caring_daughter on Wed Apr 26, 2006 12:00 AM

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Dear Barbara, I completely understand how your entire world has been turned upside down with your mom's recent diagnosis. Our family has been in a stage of "crisis mode" for the past 8 months and are trying diligently to take things one day at a time. Ensure is just like the boost that my dad drinks daily as a nutrition supplement. It comes in different flavors like vanilla, strawberry, and chocolate so if your mom begins to dislike one flavor you can try a new one! My dad also likes the taste of a particular food item one day or week and then cannot stomach it the next. My mom is constantly trying different things. I am glad to hear that your mom now has a medication to keep her from getting nauseated and from vomitting after taking the temodar. My dad takes Zofran 16 mg now when he is on the double dose of Temodar; otherwise, he would definitely be vomitting. You were wondering about thrush. It is actually a yeast type infection that occurs in a persons mouth. You can tell if your mom has it by looking in the back of her mouth and at her tongue for white patches. This is a common side effect of decadron, which is a steroid used to control brain tissue swelling. Does your mom take decadron? If not, you probably don't have to worry so much about her having thrush. You also mentioned that your mom takes Xanax. This is actually more of an anxiety-reducing medication than an anti-depressant. You may want to talk with her dr. about an antidepressant. It is not unusual for a person to experience depression following surgery for a brain tumor, not to mention all of the changes in their day-to-day activities and state of health. Like your mom, my dad was always independent, healthy, and strong. He is extremely courageous and has a positive attitute and a strong faith. We are loving him as much as he will tolerate! He was 67 when he was diagnosed. Take care. Be hopeful. Rondi

After Radiation

by Florida on Tue May 09, 2006 12:00 AM

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I read your message about your mom, I had tonsil cancer and had only radiation to my neck in five areas. My last radiation treatment was January 26, 2006, I still get very nausea, I vomit occationally now, but I was vomitting all through the radiation, they say the head and neck feels the worst through radiation, but it has the most results, I am 45 years old, I am still very sick from the radiation, I can't swallow whole foods, it took me over two months to get my taste back after the radiation stopped, and I still cannot taste that good, my radiation oncologist said some people could take up to six months to recover. Your mom will get better as time goes by, it is very sad and heartbreaking, I know what you are going through. God bless you and I will pray for your mom to recover. Stephanie

RE: Everything Tastes Bad, Smells Bad, no Appetite

by 1416reid on Mon Apr 23, 2007 12:00 AM

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I am also on Temodar just completed my first 5 day cycle. I am on it for an oligo grade 2 with some more agressive features. Anyways, everything tastes bad to me and I am extremely nauseous. I also caught a really bad cold over the weekend. I know how your mom feels this stinks. I would like to note that Boost tastes a little better  than Ensure. Good luck!!
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