Dad is deteriorating – Not sure what is going on

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    I am not a doctor, but one of the things our doctor said to check for Ammonia (NH3) in blood. It is called Hepatic Encephalopathy. The treatment option is Lactulose.

    This may not be applicable, but worth talking to the doctors.

    Wish you the best



    My wife and I both went to a counselor several times and found it very helpful. My wife started on anti-depressants and that has helped also. Is this something your father can talk with his physician about? My wife’s doctor was very attuned to this and strongly supported her mental health treatments.

    Good luck.


    Sorry to hear you are having a hard time Amilcar. No words of wisdom from me, but I think Kris has some good points there for you to follow up.
    Just wanted to let you know that you are thought about.


    Dont have any wisdom, but just wanted to offer you my best wishes. I was on an opiate when I had sciatica and truly all I did was sleep–so it might be the medication. Perhaps you might try talking with the doctor to see if there is another pain medication? Is your dad seeing a pyschologist? I saw one for a couple of months and it really helped with depression. It is very scary to think about your death and the worry about leaving your loved ones is the worst part of it. If he is not seeing anyone, maybe you could make an appointment for a psychologist…he may have things on his mind he doesnt want to burden you with.

    I will keep you and your dad in my prayers.



    Hello everyone –

    My dad was diagnosed in 4/2006 and we’ve had a reasonably good experience since his diagnosis. Except for one severe infection he has not had any pain or major complications.

    That said, the disease has progressed slowly and dad has become very tired and depressed over the last 2-3 months. In his last CT scan there was still no visible mass in his bile duct and his lung mets had grown a little and had some new ones. Last month he developed some back pain but that has been controlled quite well. He also started having some diarrhea and lost about 10 lbs but that might also have been driven by some stuff he should not have eaten.

    In any case he’s always sleepy and depressed and is refusing to eat and be more active. I am very concerned since he is not showing typical symptoms and is still overall quite healty.

    He is currently on Irinotecan and Cisplatin as well as a drug for the back pain.

    I wonder how much disease progression could have taken place in the last 3 months to really drive him to this stage. I also wonder how much might be depression and fatigue from the chemo and the opiate he’s taking.

    If anyone has any ideas/experiences/suggestions it would be kindly appreciated.

    Thank you and best of luck to all!


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