Thursday, May 1, 2014

Cancer Treatment XXI –lessons learned

I have deep respect for our healthcare system. Hubby (the current one)  has gone through the long process of cancer treatment. My ex-husband was taken to emergency with a massive heart attack in February, he died. Our healthcare employees, from all sides of the gurney, are amazing. 

What have I learned?

Much, as caregiver, especially with my husband's diagnosis. 
  • Firstly, take someone with you to appointments. There is much information to process.
  • Take a pen, paper, snacks
  • Breathe.
  • Relax
  • Take time off from the cancer diagnosis
  • Tell family and friends. It helps to share
  • Write down information in a medical journal.
  • Keep up your activities, if you can.


The month post-surgery was terrible. I ended up going to emergency in February. I had heart palpitations, 
12:18 p.m. You'll note I scratched my eye ball!
chest pains, I was tired, fatigued, having panic attacks. My tests, over 5 hours, ruled out heart issues. I was experiencing stress, and emotional fatigue. At the suggestion of the ER physician, I increased my antidepressant dosage. I first had treatment for depression when I moved to Muskoka, to care for my late mother and father, and was alone, far from a support system.

Hubby has had some anxiety, as well. He writes down his symptoms, dosages of various medications, and is worried about it. An anti-anxiety medication really helps. There is no need to be anxious and in a panic mode, with panic attacks.

This has passed, now. THings are calmer without the stress of managing sutures, the catheter, hubby's direct care. We have another trip in on May 6th, for a follow-up PSA test. It should be zero, since it hadn't spread into surrounding tissue, according to the MRI, CAT Scan and Bone Scan.

It's been a tough go. We relax as much as we can. Here he is relaxing in the back yard, listening to music, watching the cats and the birds and bees.

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