Saturday, September 22, 2007

Cancer Sucks

Big Daddy's prostate cancer has metastasized. Big Daddy is my grandfather. We celebrated his 90th birthday last month. He had prostate cancer many years ago, fought it, and beat it. It returned to his prostate last year, and now it has spread to his bones.

Once cancer spreads beyond the site of origin, it cannot be "cured". But in many cases it can be "managed" as a chronic illness. Bone mets are not fatal, but they are painful, and increase the risk of a fracture. Please keep Big Daddy in your thoughts and prayers as he fights this cancer once again.

Cancer took my father's life in 1993 when he was just 57. Cancer has affected other family members and friends. I work in Radiation Oncology and deal with it every day. Knowing more about it makes it no less upsetting when it happens to one of your own. So many sad stories cross my desk in the medical charts I work on. Babies and little kids with tumors (so brave, many of them), palliative treatments for men and women younger than I am, seeing the same folks return again and again as the cancer migrates through their bodies, seeing the worried faces of spouses, watching someone deteriorate each day, or just seeing how distressingly large a tumor is on a CT scan.

No doubt about it. Cancer just sucks.

18 comments:

LL said...

*smooch*

Pssst... don't tell PDM. ;)

fermicat said...

Thanks, LL.

dr sardonicus said...

Between my wife's breast cancer and my little brother's passing from a brain tumor, I've had more than enough experience with dealing with cancer in the family. I'll keep your grandfather in my thoughts and prayers.

Dave said...

He beat it once. My money's on him and his family, that'd be you and PDM.

fermicat said...

Thank you for the kind words, dr. s and dave.

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wa11z said...

I'm here for you. :)

Beth said...

I watched my father deteriorate (not from cancer) and I can't even describe the experience. No serious illness is good. It all sucks. I just hope you and your family find peace and are okay.

trinamick said...

I'm so sorry to hear that. So many of my family have died from cancer, but there have been some success stories along the way too. I'll keep your family in my prayers.

magnetbabe said...

It is just beyond comprehension how so many people have lost loved ones to cancer (I am no exception). I'm so sorry and I'm keeping you in my thoughts.

tiff said...

Oh noes. So sorry.

Cancer is teh suck. There is hope on the horizon, but sady it's not coming soon enough. It's a tricky nasty thing, for sure.

fermicat said...

wa11z, beth, trinamick, magnetbabe, and tiff - thanks for the support.

Big Daddy is going to see an oncologist tomorrow and then we'll know more about his options and what we're dealing with. If he needs radiation, I am in a position to see that he gets very good care.

Jeni said...

Definitely do agree with your statement that "cancer sucks." Both my parents died of cancer as did my Mom's younger sister and one of my Dad's brothers died of an identical form that my dad had but on the positive side, my dad's youngest sister had a colostomy in 1991 for a malignant tumor and at age 90 now, she's still living. Sadly not really "living" in the true sense though as the senility factor has pretty well taken over there.
And I had colon cancer 4 years ago - had chemo, radiation, surgery, more chemo and so far, cancer free although they thought a year ago it had returned at the original site and I had a colostomy done last Oct. The surgeon now feels the mass was actually a massive infection because all the final tests came back as being benign. Last PET scan came back with no trace of cancer and no trace of the MASS either which they did not even attempt to remove when they did the colostomy -due to damage on the pelvic wall from radiation. But the colostomy has made my life a lot better overall - pain in the behind to deal with at times but that is just a figurative pain, not literal and it got rid of the literal pain so all is ok in that respect then.
Cancer is nasty but it isn't the biggest and baddest ogre that it once was. Prayers for Big Daddy and your family, for sure!

fermicat said...

Welcome Jeni. I've read your comments over at Dave's place. You're a survivor! That is awesome, and definitely a welcome perspective. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences.

ctheokas said...

Sorry to hear about this, Fermi. I figure knowing about it may make it worse in a lot of ways. Sending good thoughts and vibes your way.

Kathleen said...

Every member of my family who has died in the past 20+ years has died from cancer, so I know all about it. I figure it's just a matter of time for me. I just hope it's a really long time.

Prayers and thoughts for Big Daddy.

NYPinTA said...

I am so sorry about what is going on with Big Daddy. Thoughts to you and your family, fermi.

fermicat said...

ctheokas, kathleen, nypinta - thanks, y'all. Hugs for everyone.

We saw the oncologist, and I was impressed with him. Based on what I know about prostate cancer and mets, I think he has taken a good approach. More tests in a week or so, and we will know more then.