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Quality Of Life

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This morning I woke up to thoughts of the suffering Lars went through the last nine months of his life. They aren't pleasant memories and now I'm wondering whether "Quality" is actually better than "Quantity".

When diagnosed with cancer, oncologists usually tell you that with treatment of some sort, your survival chances are higher than not doing anything.But..they forget to tell you that "Quality" is usually improvised, be it from the chemo, radiation or meds. that you must take.

Lars went through a horredous operation to remove his right kidney, bladder and urether tube in April,2009. He had about 4 months of relief(if you call using a urostomy bag relief). In Aug, the pain in his back was back, by Oct. they found cancer in the lung, liver and probably more places had they probed deeper. The pain was so terrible from Aug. to Dec. when he passed, they had him on morophine and methadone AS NEEDED!! Imagine what that did, not only to his body but his mind. To settle the mind..Anxiety Pills, causing him insommnia..so Sleeping pills. The man was so confused he didn't have a clue as to what was going on.

That's what is called "Quality of Life"? Thanks,but NO THANKS !!

Right now I have a real hatred towards doctors that push you into making a decision without all the facts. We were told that if the cancer did come back, they would give him chemo. When the cancer was found in Oct. we were informed that the chemo would destroy his good kidney, basically go home and die. Had he known this before the operation, he may have chosen to just live out the last days in peace and less pain. The quantity would have been less, the quality would have been much better.

Jan 11th will be thirteen months, most times I find it getting easier to cope, but sometimes something triggers bad thoughts. Today was one of them.

Sorry to be so long winded, thanks for listening.


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I think we all need to give up worrying about being long winded....we all need this site and sometimes we need to talk a bit.

As for quality of life vs quantity of life...after watching Bill I definitely have put it in my living will that I will do nothing extraordinary. If I get cancer...no chemo. I have two friends who did no chemo. One is enjoying the time she has left. Why do we try to keep people alive? We learn about that after watching one we love suffer but at least we learn.

It has been 9+ months for me, almost 10 and I still cry every single day, sometimes for a long time. I expect it to be the same in 4 more months. We are where we are...we grieve the way we each need to grieve. i am reading a book called Sacred Grief about accepting grief and respecting it. Our culture does not support that concept but we must.

Sleep well,


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The only consolation that I have in Glenn's death is that he died of heart fibrillation, not the cancer. Had he come home from hospital after his surgery, he would likely have had the "life-prolonging" chemo, blood transfusions, etc. He was already down to 120 pounds when he had the surgery, and I'm just so grateful that he didn't have to go through the psychological torment of seeing his life waste away, of worrying about me, of losing his dignity and his faculties. Some days, that thought is the only thing that keeps me sane.

Lainey and mfh, when I read the stories of Lars and Bill, I realize how truly lucky I am that I didn't have to watch my darling man die that way and I'm so sorry that you had to go through that.

Why is it considered humane and merciful to "put down" our pets, but that we must be less humane and merciful to people?

There is no question that if I'm ever diagnosed with terminal cancer or some other incurable disease, I'll not be throwing myself on the mercy of doctors and hospitals. I think they do what they do just because they can.

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You raise a good issue. That's why, it has to be each person's decision, not their family's, how they choose to handle their course of action. My mother in law started out taking chemo but a ways into it decided to discontinue it. She still survived, albeit bedridden with cancer, 2 years and 8 months from when they sent her home from the hospital to die. I am glad we had that time with her, it was very special, but it was very difficult to watch her slowly suffer to death. I have never seen anyone suffer more than she did and she did it so stoically. She was not just my mother in law, she was my best friend and she meant the world to me, but by the time she finally died, I was glad to see her relieved from her pain and suffering.

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