Waiting for the results

After the scan last week, I have been watching my wife more closely. I also made the error of seeing what the symptoms of liver cancer are. I have seen her deteriorating (at least in my view). She doesnt have the same energy, or strength as previously.

She was first diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma, but we know that it can spread, and at the last meeting were told that there were tumours on her liver. The distinction was important, on not in.

From looking at the NHS website, liver cancer symptoms can include the following:

–       Skin or whites of eyes turn yellow, you may have itchy skin

–       Loss of appetite, or losing weight without trying to

–       Feeling tired or having no energy

–       Feeling generally unwell, or having flu like symptoms

–       A lump on the right side of your tummy

Other symptoms can affect your digestion, such as

–       Feeling or being sick

–       Pain at right side of tummy or right shoulder

–       Symptoms of indigestion

–       A swollen tummy not related to when you eat

I can be the sort of person who when I read of an illness, feel I have some symptoms (emails from school about headlice will always get me scratching!), but I noticed some of these in her before reading up. It is hard to know for sure, as in her case, any disease on the liver would be a metastasis from elsewhere, not originating there, so the symptoms may be different.

But from that list, she ticks alot of boxes. She is very tired, and will be in bed by just after 8, even when not doing a great deal all day. She will say she has had a busy time, but it is not on the levels she used to do. There is not a lot of walking for long distances right now. A short coffee with a friend will rule her out for the rest of the day. She has a real loss of energy, that is very noticeable.

She also has a loss of appetite, and doesn’t eat as much as before. She still eats a small amount, and even then the type of food can be problematic. She also can’t really be in the same room as the rest of us when eating, as the smell and sight can make her nauseous. . And without using scales I would say a reasonable amount of weight loss has happened recently. I can’t always tell if she is sick or feeling sick, as that can be a default position for her unfortunately.

Her tummy has been swollen for a long time, but I think it is getting bigger. Again it is hard to tell without seeing the scans, but when you live with a person you know generally how they look when they are well, and what their normal size is. And you know when they don’t look well, and when they are losing weight or swelling in areas.

She also has a general look that doesn’t look well. Not jaundiced, but not rosy cheeked. I think most people currently don’t appear well – tis the time of the year – however I feel she is looking a bit worse than normal. A washed out, grey tinge to her, and while we try to get out with her fatigue, we don’t get far.

I realise I sound like a pessimist, and that can be true. Things are pretty rubbish here, she isnt well, money is over tight (quick plug for my buy me a coffee link below if you feel a drink would help me relax), and we are entering the colder part of the year, when lots of illnesses are around. However I am not feeling great about the scan results this week.

Hopefully we wont see a bad result, and wont have a regression of her good health too much. The radiotherapy earlier this year may still be working its magic. I hope so.