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just found out my mum has esophageal cancer

(47 Posts)
candyfluff Wed 03-Nov-10 19:00:22

any experiences - im so upset

candyfluff Wed 03-Nov-10 19:35:08

bump please sad

isheisnthe Wed 03-Nov-10 19:43:46

I am so sorry. My best friends mum had this. I hope it works out okay for you - do you know how early it has been caught?

Constance39 Wed 03-Nov-10 20:05:39

Candy, I'm sorry. Have they outlined some treatment?

I know it must be especially hard for you.

candyfluff Thu 04-Nov-10 09:09:33

my mum is 60 she has been unwell for 6 months or so and has lost 3 stone in weight - she cant eat solids if she tries then she vomits sometimes she cant even swallow her own saliva
she has had a gastroscopy and a cat scan confirming dx
they have said its been caught earlish but the tumor is large
they are doing another sacn a pep scan to see if its spread to the lymph nodes if it has there is nothing they can do - if it hasnt then the option is chemo and a removal of the food pipe a major op with no gaurantee's it would work
she doesnt want any treatment - just to be kept comfortable
they said they could insert a stent to widen the pipe so she can eat better and she is willing to have this done

im just at a loss what to say and think
my sister was hysterical last night when she heard the news

i do know that she will die but as yet they havent given a timescale
do any of you know ?

Constance39 Thu 04-Nov-10 10:04:02

Oh, jeez sad

This is a major deal for you and your sis to come to terms with. I'm so, so sorry.

okay, in terms of survival - if she doesn't want to go the chemo/surgical route then you are probably not going to have very long - maybe a few months.

When they insert a stent, the tumour can in some cases grow through it, so it will only be effective for a shortish time, depending on the aggressiveness of the tumour. But it will make her much more comfortable for the time being.

Also, sadly it will spread to her other organs if it hasn't already. The only way to stop this would be to have the surgery and the chemo, which kills off any stray cells that might be travelling through her lymph system and bloodstream.

If she isn't happy to have this treatment then you will have her with you until either she is unable to eat any more - they can tube feed for a while, but not indefinitely - or the cancer starts to grow out of control in her lungs or liver or somewhere else, which will gradually make her systems shut down.

I hope this isn't too frank, but I thought you would want the truth about what will likely happen, or you will just be imagining worse things instead iyswim

I hope this helps xx

ps Hospice (and Macmillan) can make her last few months comfortable - Hospice has an outreach team who will come to her in her own home if she doesn't want to leave it. It's worth contacting them asap and getting her all the support you can, they are brilliant at the right meds and so on.

healthebody Thu 04-Nov-10 10:10:10

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Constance39 Thu 04-Nov-10 10:11:05

Bullshit, sorry, this is no place for spam.

Sorry, Candy, ignore this loon.

MackerelOfFact Thu 04-Nov-10 10:16:06

My Grandad had this a few years ago. Unfortunately he didn't survive, but he was about 25 years older than your mum and already weakened by Parkinson's and recent skin cancer, so surgery was not an option for him. He had the stent put in which helped him to be able to eat for a while longer, but he didn't have any other treatment. He was diagnosed in February and passed away in June.

The hardest part of the illness for the family I think was that he lost the ability to speak as the tumour grew larger. It's heartbreaking when your loved on is trying to tell you something and you can't understand what they're saying.

I really hope the prognosis is positive for your mum. Thinkng of you x

candyfluff Thu 04-Nov-10 13:21:34

mackeraloffact your post made me cry didnt think it would be so little time between dx and deathsad

LadyBlaBlah Thu 04-Nov-10 13:26:34

Yes, please ignore that crap from healthebody

So sorry to hear about your mum - she is too young. Make the most of every day from now on

Best wishes

5inthebed Thu 04-Nov-10 13:41:44

Candyfluff, so sorry to hear about your mum sad. It must have been such a shock for you all.

My DFIL passed away from this a few years ago, but when he was dx it had spread to several other parts of his body. Unfortunately there was nothing they could do for him because of this. He passed away within 5 weeks of DX.

Call Macmillan when you are feeling up to it as they can offer you and your family help if needed.

candyfluff Thu 04-Nov-10 13:45:57

they have said they dont think its spread just waiting on news weather the lympg nodes are infected with cancer as they are showing inflamation

StandingAtTheBackLookingStupid Thu 04-Nov-10 14:04:21

So sorry to hear about your Mum, Candyfluff. My Uncle has just been dx with this too but in his case it has spread to his liver. He is undergoing treatment but not sure what prognosis he has been given.

Hope everything goes as well as possible for your Mum x

nightcat Thu 04-Nov-10 16:01:59

so sorry Candy
My cousin died of this last year, at the time of dx drs discovered it spread to his liver. He did have a stent but it was as Constance said, not for long. He was dx in Aug, died in March. The hardest bit was that he wasn't able to keep down any food towards the end, so practically starved.

Make most of the time you all still have plus get any support from Macmillan etc.

Constance39 Thu 04-Nov-10 16:16:30

Candy, it's good if it hasn't gone elsewhere yet - however I expect you know that once it's reached the lymphatic system, it is effectively 'in transit' as this system takes it round the body.

I am really, really sorry. I hope you can get her comfortable very soon x

AllOverIt Thu 04-Nov-10 16:23:30

I'm so so sorry. We lost my wonderful FIL in Jan this year to stomach cancer. The site of the tumour was joining the oesophagus. It was quick, but in a way we were all thankful as it was a very dignified end for him.

There's nothing to say really, except that my thoughts are with you sad

mrsfollowill Thu 04-Nov-10 16:31:57

Hi Candy - I've got a more postive experience.
My Dad got this about 20 yrs ago. He was mid fifties at the time. He had the op to remove the tumour. It was a success and he recovered well. He had another 5 years of relatively good heath, saw his grandchildren born and got to know them. Sadly cancer came back (not in the same place though). Again for the next few years he had treatment and had long periods where he was well and enjoyed life. He succumbed in the end just over six years ago. We had many quite frank chats about the whole situation and he was grateful for the extra time he had with us. I'm glad you've got a sister- so have I - and we were there at the end supporting each other and our Mum.
Macmillan's are great and helped us so much. Take care, and make the most of whatever time you have.

MackerelOfFact Thu 04-Nov-10 16:33:40

Oh Candy, I'm so sorry, I didn't mean to make you cry. I really want to stress how much older and more frail my DGD was than your mum. I doubt he'd have had long left even without the cancer. It's fantastic news the cancer doesn't appear to have spread - crossing everything for you that the lymph nodes are unaffected too.

candyfluff Thu 04-Nov-10 16:37:51

she doesnt want any treatment either way [sad

PaulineMole Thu 04-Nov-10 16:38:08

very sorry to hear this candy.
my mother sadly died of oesophagal cancer. we didn't get long post-diagnosis before she died, but this did mean she was not in pain/discomfort for long. i hope you are all able to make the most of this precious time. thinking of you all.

WhatsThatDuckDoingThere Thu 04-Nov-10 16:41:15

I'm so sorry sad

My dad had this at 57. I guess you're after honesty?

Ok, he had a big op where they removed a large part of his oesophagus. That gave him an extra five months or so. When the secondary DX came in, it was a short five weeks until he died.

I do think these things are very individual though, and I don't think you can base what your mum has left on other people's experiences.

I'm very sad for you xx

CarGirl Thu 04-Nov-10 16:42:05

So sorry Candy I think generally the outcome isn't good in terms of length of time, certainly hasn't been for the 3 other people I know who've had this.

Huge hugs please make the most of the time you have and make some special memories.

candyfluff Thu 04-Nov-10 17:02:00

i actually have 3 sisters its just that my little sister is closer to her than we are.

CarGirl Thu 04-Nov-10 17:06:31


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