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My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi rollercoaster I managed to speak to my mother about my grandfather not wanting treatment for his cancer at 90. She told me today that similarly he refused the bone marrow biopsy for them to be able to judge what therapy to give him and eventually refused the blood transfusions. There were a couple of key pieces of advice that she gave me that I can pm to you if you ever find you need more input. But hopefully not and everything is sorted and you have had the chance to have s peaceful family christmas XX
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

The kindest outcome for her, well done for fighting her corner. I hope that your family have a good Christmas x
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

How awful that yourmum and you are having to go through this. Thank goodness you had typed the letter..hope it os sorted for you now xx
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

That's good news - thanks for letting us know. Only the other day i was wondering how things were going.

 

Now you and your mum can just enjoy the time that remains, and here's hoping it is a long and contented time. xx

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi again to all the ladies who came back to me about my 90 year old mum and her breast lumps.   I just wanted to keep you posted on this one.    The Matron got involved somehow on this and despite telling me she would come back to me and let me know their decision re my mum, they called mums care home and discussed the situation with the staff there who then agreed that they would call a meeting with me and mum and the nurse practitioner and one of the nurses at the care home to discuss the problem and see what my mum decided.     There was a long discussion about the rights and wrongs of what was happening and my mum began by saying she would cooperate if that's what they wanted.   However, it transpired that she thought that the biopsy would cure her cancer and when I told her no it wouldn't do that but it could tell them what kind of cancer it was and they may be able to give her a tablet she was quite emphatically not interested in that at all.     Obviously, the reaction I hoped for and to that end had taken a typed letter with me, hidden in my bag until the right time, which I brought out and mum was only too pleased to sign it as she didn't want to go back there to that place for anything.    I have obviously sent that to the Hospital and hopefully that will be an end of it all.    I'd just like to say thanks all for your support and encouragement and your kind comments and hope you all receive the same encouragement yourselves.  Love and hugs to all of you xxx

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi everybody, I just wanted to say thanks so much for all your encouragement, support and lovely comments about my mums experience.    I feel that the decision to decline treatment and indeed any more testing is absolutely the right way to go especially having seen the dire effects that have followed the examination, mammogram and scan.   I didn't expect to have to fight this battle so soon after fighting a similar one for my dad just 10 weeks ago before he died but I am determined they will not put her through any more distress.   I gave determined that if I hear any more from the hospital I shall tell them that if they want to discuss it any more they must meet at her care home with my mum, myself, one of them and a trusted carer to hear my mum say she doesn't want to go any further.   I'm sure I will only have to ask if she wants to go back to that place that she will decline and if they decline to come to her home they will have to do without seeing her because I'm not taking her back there.    Thanks again for all your support and I hope you all manage to complete your treatments, kick cancers butt and live your lives to the full again soon xxxxxx

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Rollercoaster

 

I have been reading all the posts about your lovely mum.  I have to say this is about what is right for your mum, not the medical profession and good for you for fighting your mum's corner.

 

Sending you both loads of hugs

 

Helena xxx

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi Rollercoaster, just caught up with your story. I'm so sorry you're having to go through this, but I would also like to add my voice of support for your decision, your mum has enough to deal with than being messed about with fir what seems like little/ no gain. I am also one of the ladies from the oct thread who are doing fecx6 so thank you for answering Chaffinch' s questions as we've all been wondering, about the later treatments as they're not many on the forum doing fecx6 that are still posting by the end. Good luck with your mum I hope you get the right outcome for her.

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Thanks for your reply Rollercoaster 😊
Sounds largely encouraging except for last one but spending the last couple of weeks in January in bed could be worse!
Love to you and your mum, sorry to hear that your mum’s Parkinson’s as got worse. Wishing you and your family a peaceful festive season x
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Dear rollercoaster,
I've only just caught up with this thread. I can only agree with what others have said, you are totally right and have your mum's true interests at heart. I suspect you will never hear from the hospital about it again, but if you do, perhaps you can call on your mum's gp and carers to back you up.

I'm sad but not surprised that the stress of the experience has made your mum's other symptoms worse. I feel particularly sad for you because my own mother is struggling with dementia and the strain on her and my dad is severe. Mum has had several relatively minor illnesses in recent months and each one seems to drag her down a bit further mentally and emotionally. I'm sure she would never cope with a cancer diagnosis. They are in their nineties and have been married 70 years just like your parents were. It is so sad to see someone going through this in the final stage of a long happy life. Know that you have done the right thing and go on giving her your loving support.
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi Chaffinch17,  I hope this info encourages and helps you.     I really struggled with FEC 3 and I said to my daughter quite emphatically that I felt I could not go on, I wanted to stop.   Being her mothers daughter bless her, she decided not to argue or cajole me but I instead said OK, that's fine it's over, we'll tell your oncologist, don't worry any more just rest.   I knew as she walked out of the room that I would go on because I wanted to give myself the best chance of survival and she knew that's how I would feel so she said just the right thing at the right time.   FEC 4 wasn't bad, by number 5 I knew there was only one more and that buoyed me up but number 6 was the hardest, it took me two weeks to get out of bed and if they had said just do one more I think I would have decked them with every ounce of strength I had, but having said that I felt so proud that I had achieved the 6 and I knew I had done what I needed to do.   In short, yes, Chemo is hard and there are times when you feel you can't go on but the finish line is bliss and you have done your very best, you should be proud of yourself at that time because you have kicked the butt of cancer.   I found it helped me to try and build in to the cycle things to do as treats when I was able to get out and about and have set days when nobody was allowed to talk about cancer but talk about more pleasant subjects and plan things to do after the treatment was over.      Sorry if I've rambled on a bit but I hope find some of it useful, and I wish you all the best with the rest of your treatment and your BC journey, love and hugs to you all.      Btw, I haven't heard any more from the hospital about my mum bug the carers have told me that since her experience at the breast clinic her Parkinsons has really advanced and she is struggling to even stand up, all this while she is grieving the loss of my dad in September, her husband of 70 years, my heart aches for her. 

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi Rollercoaster, I see from your introduction to that you had 6 x FEC, would you mind letting a couple of us from the October chemo thread how your last 3 FEC treatments were compared with the first 3.
I think there are 3 of us on this regime rather than FEC-T and having struggled with round 3 not looking forward to another 3!
Thanks
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Rollercoaster I am sure that you will have 100% support from us all on the forum! Can you have a word with GP to find out your rights? Good luck!
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

I am rather amazed that docs are pushing treatment. My oncologist said that if I was over 70 he wouldn't recommend chemo.
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Thanks Ruth07, I would appreciate any advice on this. I so want to spare my mum any further stress especially as it would achieve very little or no benefit for her xx
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Dear Rollercoaster I just read your thread this evening. I am so sorry you and your mum are going through this. Both my grandparents had cancer in their later years that was not treated due to their age and infirmity as they were late 80s/early 90s. This was a choice taken by them in conjunction with their children even though the doctors would probably have gone ahead with some form of treatment. My grandmother had ovarian cancer and my grandfather blood cancer. Neither of them died from their cancers but rather from other age-related complications. I know that they were both completely satisfied with their decision not to treat and their children were happy that this decision was respected.
I will ask my mother next time I speak to her whether there were any difficult conversations with the hospital just in case she has any advice to share.
Good luck X
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Well said RoadRunner, first do no harm is a mantra they should be sticking with. I'm hoping it turns out well in the end and they decide to leave mum with the bit of dignity she has left. Hope all goes well for you too x
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi Optimiissy64, I have not been invited to the best interests meeting so I guess I don't get the chance to say any more than I could say on the phone to the BC nurse when she phoned me. I'm assuming they asked me to sign because mum wouldn't speak to them and just kept looking at me but that's a good question. The other thing that crossed my mind today is if they went ahead and did the biopsy and it was Her 2 positive as mine was (highly likely I would have thought given the genes) then what because the only treatment for that is infusions or it could be triple negative, again no pills for that so is there any point in doing the biopsy. I hope it gets resolved quickly and I hope they don't try and bypass me in this decision making process because mum is so very vulnerable and I promised my dad before he passed away in September 2017 that I would care for my mum. If they override me now I would feel that I had let them both down. xx
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

My mums lumps in both breasts were discovered by a carer when mum was getting showered, we have no idea how long they've been there but judging by the size it would seem, some considerable time but she is a very private person and detests getting undressed or washed. It just all seems too much too late bearing in mind her dementia and Parkinsons too. There was a young student nurse following us at the hospital all the time we were there and she heard me telling mum all the time that it was her choice what happened to her and she saw how terrified my mum was so hopefully she will speak up on our behalf, thanks for your reply, hope your route through BC is as smooth as can be xx
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Thanks Sue C, I'm guessing that since mum refused to speak up at the time but has since told her carers that she's relieved it's over and she doesn't have to go back that she agrees with my decision but she won't voice her wants/not wants. The hospital isn't happy with my decision although I've heard no more from them yet so I'm still hoping common sense prevails, thanks for your reply xx
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi Ali49, and thanks for your reply.    I do have Power of Attorney along with my brother who is firmly of the same mind as me on this subject.   However, what we have is Enduring Power of Attorney, which is the forerunner of Lasting Power of Attorney so it doesn't give us the automatic right to decide on medical issues.  That being said, my mum just gets so afraid and so confused she just doesn't answer at all which is no help but quite understandable.  This is why I was speaking for her and I totally agree she needs dignity and respect and for them to understand that even a simple thing like getting a shower is traumatic enough for her now.    I appreciate very much your thoughts on this as I wondered if I was being too negative about the situation and wanted to know what others thought, thanks very much.   I hope all goes as well as it can for you and you are soon putting BC behind you xxx

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Rollercoaster 

 

You absolutely have your moms best intersts and hopefully they are just covering their butts on this one.

 

Can you perhaps contact your mom's GP for advice and support and ask for a written explaination of how additional meds could affect/undermine her current treatment plan 

 

Hugs x

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi Rollercoaster

I agree with your decision too.  What point is there in pursuing this?  Surely the priority for medical staff is 'first do no harm'.  Your mum has enough issues to deal with, without adding to them.

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi Rollercoaster,

 

Big hugs for you and your mum. It sounds like it really was a stressful day for you at the breast clinic.  It really does sound like a biopsy would have been too much for your mum on that day, so you were right to say no. 

 

With the breast clinic team getting in touch with you again, you have another chance to weigh up the options.  Maybe the breast team will meet up with you to discuss your concerns.  I would want to ask them lots of questions before making any decisions or letting them go ahead with a biopsy.

 

1.What the procedure would be if you did decide to have a biopsy done now - is there a way of making the procedure less frightening?

2.What benefit would the results of a biopsy be to your mum?

3.What treatments would they offer her and would hormone treatment even be an option alongside her other meds? How would the treatment improve her quality of life?

 

Lots of love, Cath 

 

 

 

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Rollercoaster I totally agree with your decision. It would be cruel to put your poor mum through the nightmare of treatment. It's bad enough when you're young and fit.

A couple of years ago the mum of my good friend (who I've known 40+ years since primary school) was diagnosed at 80. She has altzeimers and was subjected to a double mastectomy, I had suggested to my friend not to agree to any treatment but they went ahead. She now agrees that it was a mistake, her mum has gone downhill mentally and they leave a letter by her bed for her to read each morning as she doesn't understand where her breasts have gone and why she has scars.

Stick to your decision, you know what's best for your mum x
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi Rollercoaster

I'm so sorry you and your mum have had to go through this. Your decision was absolutely right and I would have made the same one. Hopefully the Best Interest meeting will come to the same conclusion. I would hope you would be invited to that meeting to advocate on behalf of your mum? She seems to have made her wishes very clear. (Incidentally, I am a little confused that they asked you to sign the consent form for the biopsy - my understanding was that someone cannot sign consent on behalf of an adult or if they do it is pretty meaningless legally. You might want to get some clarification on that, as I think the hospital was in error unless things have changed a lot in recent years....) I hope this gets resolved quickly for you and your mum. xx

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

I have to agree it seems cruel to put her through anything else. I suspect they are just dotting the i’s and crossing the T’s and covering their own backs and the team will ultimately come to the same conclusion as the doctor and you. How was her lump discovered?
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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi rollercoaster

I too agree with your decision. Maybe its worth finding out what rights you and she have about treatments. Surely if she doesn't want to go for tests, then its her choice. Equally if that turns over to you, then you can make that decision.

Sue xx

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Re: My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

I am so sorry to hear your mum and you are going through this but I completely agree with your decision Rollercoaster. Why would they want to put a 90 year old lady through such invasive procedures. At 90 she deserves dignity and peace and the best palliative care she can get.

My mum.is 79 and has demrntia and if it was her i would make the same decision i am sure.

Do you have the health and welfare lasting power of attorney for your mum. I have. It might help.
Goid luck with getting the care you want for your mum xxc
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My 90 year old mum has breast cancer

Hi everybody, I guess I'm looking for some common sense on the forum really.   Let me explain a bit more.  I had breast cancer 4 years ago and had a WLE, then 6 x FEC, 15 rads and a year on Herceptin.  I'm ok now and getting on with life or so I thought.   On Monday 27/11/2017 my 90 year old mum who has Parkinson's and Dementia, Lewy Bodies, was put through the mill at our nearest breast unit.   She endured, and I mean endured a terrifying (for her) ordeal of getting undressed, examined by a male doctor, sent for a mammogram and an ultrasound scan before being hauled back in the consulting room and told the lumps she has look sinister and a biopsy would be the next thing to do but not to worry as its little more than a pinprick.  (That's not what I remember from mine).    She was already traumatised so much by the whole procedure she would not speak at all at which point she looked at me with fear in her eyes.     We were told that this would not lead to any treatment other than hormone tablets as she is too old and sick to tolerate anything else, so there is no cure for her.   I was not surprised by this and really as a family this was pretty much what we expected.   ( I was also told by her carer/nurse later on that the hormones would interfere with her meds for her Parkinsons). Seeing how my mum was reacting and weighing up the information I had, when I was asked to sign the consent form for the biopsy I refused and said I thought my poor mum had gone through enough and was terrified enough by all the events of the day, I didn't feel it was right to subject her to any more trauma for very little benefit.     The doctor said he understood and that was fine, he left the room and mum was allowed to get dressed and go home.     When we arrived back at her care home and the carer asked how she was my mum said there's nothing they can do so I haven't got to go back.     Later on she twice told different carers that she had been scared and upset and she didn't ever want to go back there again.    I felt satisfied that I had made the right decision  about her diagnosis and treatment.    Today I received a phone call from the hospital to say they are not happy to leave that decision in place and are going to discuss her best interests with their multi disciplinary team and may send for her again if they feel she would benefit from a biopsy and treatment.    I am extremely upset by this action on their part and I'm dreading having to explain to my mum that she may have to go back and endure more trauma.    Does anyone have a different point of view on this or can anyone give me some idea of how to deal with all this when none of it makes sense to me, let alone my mum, thanks.