Bea, I am glad you found us. I am so very sorry about your dad. I, too, was diagnosed with HCC in '05 and there seemed to be little hope for survival. However, I went to Mayo Clinic and went through some treatments to shrink the tumor, and then a surgery to remove the entire right lobe of my liver...and, by some miracle, I have been cancer free for nearly 2 yrs. I am so sorry that your dad's CA was not found and treated earlier. He does seem to be end-stage, but it's impossible to say how much longer he has or how his disease will play out.
From the sound of your post, I am betting that you are overseas...perhaps England? The doctors are telling your family that palliative care is the only thing to be done. That means to keep him as comfortable as possible with pain meds and whatever else will help him feel more comfortable. It is likely that he will grow weaker and stop eating altogether. Try to keep him hydrated. He may also just slip into a coma.
I don't believe you have Hospice over there, but if it is possible to get some home health care to help out your mom, or just to give her a breather once in awhile so she can get out for a few hours, that would be of help. You might want to read the topic on here about Death and Dying.
I'm sorry I can't give you any other ideas. My heart goes out to you.
Post Edited (hep93) : 3/18/2009 10:20:08 AM (GMT-6)
I am so sorry to hear about your father. My husband recently died from liver cancer. He was on Nexavar for a couple of months, but when we found out that it wasn't really doing him any good, he went off of it. Although it's not an actual chemo drug it has a lot of the same affects, weakness, just plain sick feeling. When we took him off the medicine he felt alot better and a better quality of life until the last month he lived. I honestly didn't think he would last long while he was taking the medicine, because he was so sick, we were really surprised at the difference when he quit taking it. He was only 54. I don't know if this info will help in your fathers' situation, but when you know they are not going to make, I believe in quality of life instead of quanity. Your family will be in my prayers.
Connie, Chemo was never an option for my husband, I was just comparing the side effects. You were blessed the treatment worked for you, and I thank God that there are treatments for some and I pray that you stay cancer free.
Bea, please continue to post here for support.
Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.
“Life is not the way it's supposed to be. It's the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference."
Hi, Bea! Thanks for checking in. I'm so glad that your dad is feeling better. It does sound like he's having the exact same response that OkieLady's dad had upon coming off Nexavar (see her post up under your first one.)
I can tell you that when I had liver cancer, I had no symptoms. I never would have known I had it were it not for the sonogram I had every year that discovered it. I still feel exhausted all the time, but that's the hep C.
Just enjoy your dad while you have him and let him do whatever he feels up to doing. When he starts to fail, it will likely be sudden...though that phase could last a good long while. So enjoy this period of calm.
Post Edited (hep93) : 5/27/2009 12:02:03 PM (GMT-6)
Hello N4vr & every one!
My apologies for taking so long to reply. When my dad was diagnosed with HCC (September 2008) we were told he had 3 months left to live, but with Nexavar his life expectancy would at least double. He stopped taking these pills last March and since then there has been a great improvement. He's a lot happier and put on some weight. Only recently he seems to lose concentration and sometimes he doesn't understand what we say and seems disorientated. Also he's been having a lot more pain than usual in the abdomen area and his legs and abdomen are quite swollen. But 9 months later, he's still with us (thank God) and we are giving him everything he asks for as we are trying to make his last days as good as possible. He's like a spoiled child! If any one can advice on the worst to come so we might be prepared, it'd be appreciated. Thank you all for your words, you all are in my prayers.Rgds, Bea
Hi, Bea! I'm so glad to hear that your dad is still with you and doing reasonably well. I suggest you read the educational thread in the folder Hepatitis Resources at the top of the page. In particular, read the Stages of Liver Disease and the piece on Death and Dying. They are quite informative. The problem is that no two people are alike. This is a very individualistic disease--just liver disease in itself--and then when you throw in HCC, there's just no way to tell. It seems to me that Nexavar diminishes quality of life. I'm glad that you are just giving your dad whatever he wants. The symptoms you describe are most likely associated with growth of his tumor and possibly metastasis to other organs.
There is no way to know how much longer your dad has to live. Just enjoy him while he's here.