My Dad was diagnosed with bowel cancer three years ago and it had gone to the lymph. A year later it grew in his lung. The oncologist said that if it occurred in a second organ he would not be able to cure it. Oxaliplatin worked well on his lungs, the cancer cleared and so they stopped his chemo to give him a break. The cancer grew again in his lungs within a few months and they resumed Oxaliplatin . He recently had a clear scan but they have stopped the Oxaliplatin again saying that it his body cannot take it anymore. He thinks the clean scan means he has been cured of cancer. In the last few months his oncologist has retired and he has been given a new one who he has seen twice. On Tuesday I will meet this one for the first time. I privately asked the former oncologist how long my Dad might have to live and he told me around 12 months. It has been 7 months since that conversation. I'm not sure if my father has ever asked that question. Usually he insists on seeing the oncologist and having chemo on his own. He has been very stoic throughout this whole process and is convinced he has 8 years to go. While I respect his positive outlook I also wish he would be a bit more realistic about whats happening to him and help me put some plans in place for the family after he goes. I also want to make sure he is informed so that he can use his time wisely. I want to ask the new oncologist about his prognosis. Is it fair to do that in front of him?
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Hi Emma, I'm sorry for your pain. My Dad got diagnosed with stage 3 Bowel Cancer just over 3 years ago. It was so frightening and surreal at first but it may be a longer road than you expect. My Dad's went to Stage 4 with secondaries in the lung a year later and he has survived 2 more years. But recently he has been unable to continue the Oxaliplatin treatment as it is harming his body too much...so I am assuming death is coming closer now but no one seems to be acknowledging that. I wish my Dad would plan his funeral. I think you're lucky. There are many people walking this path too. I feel for you, its such a shock to understand that death is real.
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Cancer Council NSW would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which we live and work.We would also like to pay respect to elders past and present and extend that respect to all other Aboriginal people.