Sunday, March 13, 2005

very strong woman...

Mom has had several treatments now. How she feels never seems to follow a pattern. Sometimes she feels great for several days after a treatment and then crashes- feels terrible. Sometimes she feels terrible the day of the treatment.

A lot of fluid had built back up in mom's abdomen since her surgery. (they drained seven liters at that time) The docs kept telling her that the chemo would take care of it. It didn't. Mom tries so hard to not complain about anything. I didn't realize that this had not been brought up with her doctor again. By now mom was having trouble breathing again and was having shooting pains in her side. She couldn't get comfortable to sleep and could eat very little because she felt so full.

We discussed this with her doc last week. They did a sonogram to see exactly where the fluid was, and drained over four liters. It was pushing her lung upwards and compressing her spleen, stomach and bladder. I think if it was me I would have been complaining a lot.

The doc then asked her if she felt up to another chemo treatment and she felt so much better that she said "Sure! Let's do it!"

She then went back the next day so they could infuse two units of blood.

I'm amazed at all she went through in just twenty-four hours.
I've always known my mother is a very strong woman but that impressed even me....


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(written September of 2005) I have learned much in the last nine months. I have read that ovarian cancer whispers. I say it screams. It just needs someone to listen. The American Cancer Society statistics for ovarian cancer estimate that there will be 22,220 new cases and 16,210 deaths in 2005. This is a death rate FOUR TIMES that of breast cancer.Almost 70 percent of women with the common epithelial ovarian cancer are not diagnosed until the disease is advanced in stage. The 5-year survival rate for these women is only 15 to 20 percent. This is unacceptable. Women need to be made more aware of the symptoms, and doctors need to listen to their patients. Especially when the patient tells them that they fear they have ovca, as my mother did for almost a year before she was finally diagnosed. It’s so sad and senseless when a woman knows the symptoms but can’t get anyone to listen to what she is saying.