[stanford_status] Dec 12, Tues - Fighting pain and tired

John R Larsen john at larsen-family.us
Tue Dec 12 20:16:25 EST 2006

Hello Everyone,

Stanford has had a difficult day.  One of the side effects of the 
gemcitabine in about 50% of patients is pain with 9% having moderate 
or severe pain.  Stanford has pain in his left side that hurts more 
when he breathes in.  He is resting somewhat comfortably right now, 
but during the day it has been in the 3 to 5 range on the ten point 
scale.  As directed by the home hospice nurse we gave him 1 ml of 
liquid oxycodone (ETH) three times this afternoon, but that just 
took the edge off the pain.  He has been in bed with his feet higher 
than his head for the last couple of hours and that seems to be a 
comfortable position.  This helps the swelling in his feet go down.  
He is due for his next 80 mg dose of oxycontin at 8:00 PM.

During the night he was up for an hour at 1:00 AM, again for an hour 
at 3:00 AM, and up again at 6:00 AM.  He was mostly pain free during 
the night.  His stomach wasn't feeling right after the chemo.  He 
hasn't had any nausea and hasn't needed any Zofran.  This is how he 
typically handled all the other chemo drugs too.  Only the 5FU 
really got him feeling nauseous.  So, if we can manage the pain 
better I'm hoping he will feel better.  His appetite is down, but he 
has been eating a little.  Stanford said this morning that he really 
hopes the gemcitabine works.  He isn't looking forward to week after 
week of feeling yucky, but he will do what it takes.  We hope it 
works too.

Today I got a DVD player set up in his room.  We had thought the 
laptop would work for that since it plays DVDs, but it is 
inconvenient because it has to be on his bed on the TV tray and that 
gets in his way.  So I put Brad's DVD player in his room and bought 
a two input AV switch so it is easy to switch between his Wii and 
the DVD player.  This afternoon we watched "Princess Bride" 
together.  It helps to have a distraction on when fighting pain.

The home hospice nurse will come to the home tomorrow to evaluate 
his condition.

Thanks to all of you for your continued encouragement, thoughts, 
prayers, and support.  We keep praying and hoping.


John R Larsen <john at larsen-family.us>

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