Skip to comments.Should Doctors Give Patients a Chance to Die Differently?
Posted on 03/02/2012 2:45:01 PM PST by stillafreemind
When I read the WSJ article "Why Doctors Die Differently," I thought to myself, I wish Dad could have read that. The article referenced doctors getting terminally ill news about themselves. A lot of them chose to do no treatments. If they were suffering from cancer, they did not undergo radiation and chemotherapy. They treated their illnesses the way that was best for them.
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I don't know exactly what I would do..but I don't see me taking chemo and radiation.
I’ve watched friends go through “life saving”, miraculous surgeries and suffering.....oh so much suffering. And they lived another couple of months but they were months of sheer hell.
If I had a cancer, I would get myself thoroughly staged. If my 5 yr survival rate, based on the staging and type of cancer, would be “high”, I would go for the cure. Otherwise, I would refuse any chemotherapy or radiation, and go gently into the afterlife.
Only you can determine how high is “high”. Risk-benefit analysis and all that.
I know exactly what you mean. I read the WSJ article and the doctors kinda put their affairs in order and don’t go through the treatments. Their quality of life is much better than those enduring the treatments..in my opinion.
My friend went through the entire process, surgery, radiation and chemo. Had one year..it came back. She has 2 months to live now. Started out as breast cancer..came back as brain cancer. Makes no sense to me. Depressing for sure, heartbreaking for sure.
To take a fatalistic attitude with cancer is the second best way to die from it. The first is procrastination.
1) Cancer research is enormous around the world. 10 years ago it used to be that the only people *sure* to die from cancer were those whose cancer was heavily metastasized before it was even discovered. Today, however, even *that* may not be the case. Some kinds of extensively metastasized cancers can now be completely reversed.
2) Cancer research for particular cancers takes place in research “nodes”, cities where that particular kind of cancer gets special attention. If you find you have cancer, then find out where its research node is located, and move there. One of the biggest problems such nodes have is the *lack* of people available to try out new and promising treatments.
3) Even in the research nodes there is no central place for knowledge concentration. So the best bet is to “shop your cancer” around to the various institutions and companies, to see who is offering the best deals. Refrain from any “double blind testing” (because you might get just a placebo), and shoot for early stage testing.
4) Researchers can’t keep up with all the research, because there is just too much of it. So if you have cancer, you have nothing better to do then spend your time finding out what others have done and are doing.
5) By keeping a “fight! fight! fight!” attitude, you seriously boost your odds to have a complete remission; or you can seriously slow down the progression of the cancer; or as a minimum, you will help researchers discover ways to do these things for other people.
Doc friend w/prostate cancer did exactly as you describe and survived. He’s going on 5 years now, high quality of life. He was dx’d in his 50s.
All you say may be true. But my second friend went “shopping” for a second doctor..and she found one she could relate with. She asked him “What did the cancer survivors do that the others didn’t?”
His answer..”She followed a strict vitamin, lifestyle change along with the treatments.”
SHE! As in ONE ended up surviving.
I have Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis. Idiopathic = No known cause, NO known cure or treatment other than 02 therapy. Little research or funding.
My mother died from the treatment for Colon Cancer. My husband died from Melanoma that was treated.
I know what you’re saying. My greatgrandmother and grandmother both died of Ataxia. If Mom does not come down with it..we kids won’t. No treatment for it either.
He recommended to me that if he were in that situation he would go home without chemo which would make his last days horrible and virtually no change of surviving...
He had pancreatic cancer and went through the chemo and surgery, it didn't help and if he had it to do over again would not have had neither and taken the time he had left however much that was. He was able to see two or 3 patients but his prognosis was 6 months to 1 year...
His wife of many years committed suicide when he was diagnosis...they were Korean and it had something to do with traditions is all I could get out of him....she couldn't stand to see him go through everything and wanted to die first....
Without treatment my dads prognosis was 10 days to 6 weeks. He came to my home and left for eternity after 4 days. It took a week to diagnosis so he hit the 10 day mark. Originally went into hospital for colon cancer, but blood work up was abnormal, cancer surgery cancelled to find out what was wrong....loved him very much....that was in 1988
I think the younger you are the greater risk you will take...being in his 50’s is pretty young with lots left to live for...