As seen in a previous post, Lyn went back in the Hospital on March 11th and as the month ends, she is still there. It has been a tough month! When I took her in, I expected it was just de-hydration and would be bringing her home in a few days. Emergency kept her overnight and on Monday she was scheduled for Radiation Simulation where they basically fit and mark you for the actual treatments. I called over to cancel that appt and they indicated they knew she was there. Later that morning, they showed up with an emt’s and an ambulance and transported her across the street for her Simulation and gave us a start date of 2 weeks. That afternoon, Dr Mark (Oncology) was by and explained that the tumor was completely blocking the stomach and our options were becoming limited. He mentioned a possible bypass but that was major surgery and there is concern how she will handle it. He indicated he would try and get the radiation start date pushed up and we were all hoping that the radiation would allow the tumor to shrink.
Lyn was feeling better . She is currently on what they call “bowel rest” which involves no oral intake. At this point, she has experienced almost no nausea and the most relaxed and comfortable she has been in a while. Obviously she can not stay on this for long.
Lyn currently is on fluids, still has the biliary drain, and a nasal tube to drain her stomach. Currently no other nourishment. Dr Mark indicated Chemo would start when Radiation did.
Tuesday March 13th things started happening. We have a new plan, and she will remain hospitalized for a while as this unfolds… Radiation start was Expedited, expected to start in 2 weeks it began today. She said it was fine, would not even know if you did not see the lights. She felt nothing. There will be some mild chemo introduced to assist the radiation though I do not have details yet…
Nourishment, a big concern, was addressed also. She will be going on TPN feedings through a picc line. I did this at home for a while to help her gain weight. Now it will provide all needed nourishment and nutrition on a temp basis.
Gastro wants to insert a stent through the tumor which will provide a passage for food and allow her to begin eating again. I just know he wants to do this, have not discussed with him yet so I still need details and a schedule.
Keep in mind, these are not a cure… just hoping to provide a some comfort and life quality if we can get her back to being able to eat and nourish herself. It is now obvious that it will be a bit before I will get her home.
Wednesday, the 14th, she had her 2nd radiation. They are transporting her daily across the street for these treatments and will continue to do so for her hospital stay. They also began her TPN feeding and Chemo will begin tomorrow using her existing Port. This will be pretty much the position she will be in all the way through to the end of the Month! A few focal points follow…
March 19th – I was concerned about her needing to get out of bed more and they began evaluating her for PT which will begin soon. They also did a scan to check for passages around the tumor with negative results. Her eating is limited to ice chips!
March 22nd (Thursday) Lyn is still feeling good, the TPN nutrition seems to really be working. I had a conversation with Dr Mark regarding Hospital seeming to want to push her out. He put his foot down as she is not ready but also explained they get “graded” on how quick they turn over patients… “Beancounters”, they never look at the reasons…
The Gastro Dr was again suggesting Stent and and Oncology wants that as a last resort. They want to give the radiation/chemo a chance to do its job. He indicated maybe next week sometime we may try her on some liquids.
Bile drain has not been flowing… The optimistic side of me says maybe pressure from lymph node is removed and flowing “normal”. Yes, it could also have a blocked line so we have reached out to Gastro to determine. Dr Mark feels the same.
Friday March 30th – As we end the month, a decision has been made. We did meet with Oncology and Radiation and they called for a test to see if she can swallow and pass anything yet. If no improvement, they planned to go with the stomach stent. This has been discussed but we were holding off to see if the radiation would open enough… Consensus also seems to be that the pressure has been relieved on the bile drain and there is a great chance that is flowing normal again! The test results indicated no passage through so the Stent is being scheduled for Monday or Tuesday. Lyn was a little nervous but fully agreed. I called the Dr doing it and spoke to him about the procedure, recovery etc and it is not too much more than a std endoscopy which she has had several times. I discussed this with her after the call and she was much more comfortable. Time to wish us all well, if this works she can start eating and drinking and maybe get to come home soon!!