Determining Time of Death

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Determining Time of Death

by fletcher1 on Mon Dec 14, 2015 04:14 PM

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I was just diagnosed Stage IV Non small cell squamous (sp?) lung cancer.  I've been give 3 months to live WITHOUT TREATMENT, 18 months with extensive treatment.

They want me to do radiation 5xweek, with chemo treatments.  Is is worth it? 

I don't want to end up a cancer corpse, which is what I will be if I go through treatrment.  Isn't it better to just have three months of joy, no pain, no mega-medical burden on the family (we have no insurance for critical care)?

Can someome talk this out with me?

RE: Determining Time of Death

by Twins027 on Wed Dec 16, 2015 09:54 PM

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Hi! I think that choice is unfortunately up to you. My dad has small cell lung with mets to brain. He has done 10 days of radiation on his whole brain and has completed one 3 day cycle of chemo. He will do another one 24 days after that one which will be Dec. 21-23. I can tell you with him, he had hardly no side effects. With radiation he was a tad bit tired (not bad though) and it did help his symptoms. With round 1 of chemo, he has had no side effects at all so they are hopeful that he will continue to handle it well. I can also say that other relatives have not been so lucky with the effects of the same treatment. 

That is such a hard decision to make, I do not envy you. It is enough that people get this awful thing, but to throw hard decisions on top seems just cruel. 

I truly think that if it were me, I'd do treatment. If I got halfway through and it was ruining my quality of life...I'd stop. 

The tricky part, and I hate to be devil's advocate here, is the time limit. They give you 3 months. Which would be nice to have pain free and all. BUT, how much of that 3 months will be taken over by symptoms eventually? It'd be wonderful if you have no symptoms now with a great quality of life, but if symptoms will pick up after 1 month and leave you bedridden for 2 months, it seems it might not be as much of a clear choice. 

I've seen MANY patients, we went to Cancer Treatment Centers of America. I saw both sides and spoke with so many people. I think whatever you decide is the right choice. It has to be ok with you and your feelings. I wish you all the best! 

RE: Determining Time of Death

by fletcher1 on Fri Dec 18, 2015 07:48 AM

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Thank you for responding.  I still haven't made up my mind.

RE: Determining Time of Death

by Banzaifly on Sat Dec 26, 2015 08:01 AM

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On Dec 18, 2015 7:48 AM fletcher1 wrote:

Thank you for responding.  I still haven't made up my mind.

How are you doing now, dear? Sounds so scary and rough. I truly feel for what you are going through.

RE: Determining Time of Death

by lginther on Tue Dec 29, 2015 12:13 PM

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Fletcher1, Don't let them give you a date! They don't know! I was dx over a year ago with stage 4 NSCLC, I am on maintenance chemo every 3 weeks, life is good! I may not have the energy I used to, or weight, bit I am enjoying my friends family and life! So sorry you are going through this, please let me know if I can help. Sincerely, Lisa

RE: Determining Time of Death

by AKrupa61 on Thu Jan 14, 2016 08:33 AM

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Lisa is right. You are the only one in charge of your life.  Who knows. My husband was given 6 months with a different cancer and now it's 4 years. Because of all the new developments they really do have people on maintenance chemo. They call it "living with cancer"

At the very least, it may buy you time to accomplish things important to you. You can always choose to stop treatments. It's your body.

RE: Determining Time of Death

by fletcher1 on Sun Jan 24, 2016 02:32 PM

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Tnak you for your replies. I am in treatment.  Will wait to see what the scans say sfter radiation is ovr to see if the C has spread or ababted.  Then another decision time.

RE: Determining Time of Death

by lginther on Mon Jan 25, 2016 01:49 PM

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On Jan 24, 2016 2:32 PM fletcher1 wrote:

Tnak you for your replies. I am in treatment.  Will wait to see what the scans say sfter radiation is ovr to see if the C has spread or ababted.  Then another decision time.

Praying for good results!!!!

RE: Determining Time of Death

by Rowan77 on Mon Jan 25, 2016 06:02 PM

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Hi

My dad only managed one session of chemo prior to pleural mesothelioma claiming his life two weeks ago, but he was 84 and very weak already from months of a loss of appetite/ cachexia.

Everyone is different just as everyone's cancer is different.

If you feel strong enough and up to it, and your family supports you, then go for the chemo.

God bless & all the best!

RE: Determining Time of Death

by carrieg55 on Mon Jan 25, 2016 06:16 PM

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On Dec 14, 2015 4:14 PM fletcher1 wrote:

I was just diagnosed Stage IV Non small cell squamous (sp?) lung cancer.  I've been give 3 months to live WITHOUT TREATMENT, 18 months with extensive treatment.

They want me to do radiation 5xweek, with chemo treatments.  Is is worth it? 

I don't want to end up a cancer corpse, which is what I will be if I go through treatrment.  Isn't it better to just have three months of joy, no pain, no mega-medical burden on the family (we have no insurance for critical care)?

Can someome talk this out with me?

Dear Fletcher1,

I would roll the dice and go with treatment, my husband was diagnosed with the same exact cancer he lived 3 years and 3 months from date of diagnosis with treatment, I do believe he would have lived 5 years which there is a percentage that do I think the only reason he did not make the five year mark was he continued to smoke, treatments were successful, his tumors shrunk, he was never cancer free.

My husband did start with chemo and radiation they said they would start treating him aggressively, the doctor never offered a prognosis or gave us a timeline and we never asked.

I really hope this helps.

Carrie

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