Posts Tagged ‘doctor’

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Final visit to the oncologist

February 27, 2009

Today marked the final visit to the oncologist, short of a specific need coming up in the future. The swollen right leg and foot was addressed and the doctor thinks there could possibly be a clot in there, but can’t be certain. Bill more or less declined further action or investigation, a sign that he’s becoming less willing to fight through anything. The other bit of advice offered by the doctor was to set up hospice now rather than later when things became more complicated. Bill wasn’t very thrilled by the notion, but he was more receptive when told it would be just as much for Pat as it was for him.

Bill’s interest in food is diminishing at an alarming rate. Coupled with increasing desire for sleep, we’re fairly certain the cancer is progressing but none of us knows how quickly or how badly.

A Social Security visit is in the works for tomorrow so that disability can be set up appropriately. The office works a tad more swiftly when you inform them it’s in response to a terminal illness. Pat didn’t know there was a Social Security office in Kissimmee – neither did I.

Bill’s ability to walk on his own seems to be quickly fading. This evening Pat followed him to the bathroom, witnessing his legs getting shaky and his balance crumbling. She did her best to hold him steady and keep him upright. Shortly after it seemed to have subsided, Bill took a step forward and fell down. Pat was unable to stop it despite her attempts to do so. He sprained his wrist and scraped his knee mildly from the fall. He wasn’t able to get back up again, so Pat suggested he scoot along the floor until he reached the bed where he could lift himself into it. That was exceptionally tiring for him.

Pat’s new policy for Bill is in effect: if he’s tired and needs to go to the bathroom or to the bedroom, he’s going in the wheelchair.

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Scheduled visit

January 20, 2009

Today the doctor’s visit didn’t keep Bill waiting very long. The first question from the doctor was whether or not the chemotherapy had arrived as of yet. Pat informed him that Medco sent her a letter stating that the doctor’s office still needed to call them and authorize the medication before it would be sent to them. At that point Bill informed the doctor that he would not be seeking treatment, knowing how grave his situation is. The doctor was very surprised. Unsure whether or not Bill was being sincere, the doctor confirmed the decision with Pat. She told him that it was his life and his choice. Reassuring Bill that treatment would prolong his life, Bill still refused knowing it would only extend his outlook by a few months. The doctor accepted the decision, reluctantly I’m sure, and asked if there was anything he could do for them.

While Bill was not in any pain for the time being, the potential for it exists further along the line. Pat asked about pain medication when that time comes and the doctor said he would oblige. The doctor wants to start weening Bill off the Decadron medication to see if that helps with his muscle loss. If there are changes in his behavior then they will continue the regular dosage amount.

The doctor’s visit did not last long once Bill’s decision had been communicated. After that, Bill was in the mood for some McDonald’s and Pat happily took him to get some. He was able to walk in under his own power but by the time he had gotten home and finished eating, he was exhausted and slept for a better portion of the afternoon.