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Stage 4 – No Treatment – How Long-Please Reply

1.  At what time does the clock start counting down until the end (can a person have lung cancer for 2 years, have NO signs of cancer AND still be living)
2.  How long does he have
3.  When the end is near, will there be any signs or could there be none

I’ve read many posts on the internet regarding Stage 4, people saying that a person had died after finding out 3 months, 2 weeks, 1 year, etc.  I’m confused at what point did the clock start when the end came.

I was told by my 82 year old father’s physician that he has Stage 4 lung cancer.  He had smoked for many years and quit at 50.  

He had a shadow on his lung last year, and in Nov 07 he had a CT with CONTRAST that showed it had grown.  The physician told me it was now the size of a nickel (grew 4-10) and that it spread into the other lung.  I apologize for not having all the medical terminology but I feel he was sure that it was Stage 4.  Dad WILL NOT have biopsy (I know only way to know for certain-please do not suggest-he just will not).

Few days later after reading on internet, I called physician back and asked if he could have TB-he said no; if cancer was in his brain-he said no; if it could be Sarcoidosis he said yes – THOUGH no explanation on this – but after reading on internet does not seem like that’s what he has because of age, race, etc.  Again, I feel the physician feels that it is Stage 4 – he told me that when time comes it could come from pneumonia or stroke.

My father had breakdown when found out mom has dementia (though I feel it’s extremely mild, or she’s hiding it very well) so I moved in to take care of them (gave up my life).  This is a very stressful taking care of them AND wondering when and if he’ll die.  (Just a FYI: I know about caregivers stress and am taking care of that also).  

I know this is speculative – but I REALLY NEED to know IF it is true that he has Stage 4, the answers to the questions above.  I wake up every morning and wonder if he’ll wake up.
I appreciate any response-thank you.
4 Responses
Avatar universal

There are no clear predictions for any specific patient. You'll have to realize that the power to predict comes from a large number of people, and so when the numbers in this large group start decreasing - the actual power to predict also decreases. Hence, the best estimate is the experience of at least 50% of the group- this is called the median survival. For stage IV disease the range is between 8-16 months. This means that half of patients will survive up to 8-16 months. Half would die before the 8th month (so it could be anywhere from less than a month to the 8th month). The 5 year estimate is about 1%. Looking at these values, you've probably concluded that the predictions are not an exact science.

Ultimately, without any biopsy confirmation, you are faced with uncertainty. Even with the biopsy, there would still be some uncertainty, but I'd think there would be less anxiety associated with it. Stay positive
Avatar universal
My heart goes out to you.  Taking care of ailing parents is no small matter which requires enormous sacrafice.  Hat is off to you.  When its all said and done, I know that you will find comfort that  you made the sacrafice and caring for them when they cannot do for themselves.

God Bless

Avatar universal
Thank you
Avatar universal
Do it immediately!

You need:

1)   A couple of pints of vodka.  Try a good quality
2)   Salt, better with iodine.  Sea salt is good as well
3)   Two-three cotton pieces of fabrics long enough to be wrapped around your father chest
4)   A piece of wax paper of the same lengh as pieces of cotton fabrics
5)   Two-three woolen scarfs

Pour vodka in a bowl
Add salt 1/10 of the amount of vodka.
Dip one of the cotton pieces of fabric in the bowl. Squeeze gently.
Wrap the cotton around your father chest.
Wrap the fax paper on top of the cotton
Add other fabric pieces
Add woolen scarfs

Put your father in the bed under several blankets.  Let him stay in this position for 6 hours.

Your father will cough and spit the mucus. He might spit some blood.   Do not be alarmed!  That's, good.  It will be his first step to recovery.

Repeat procedure in five days.

You might need to repeat procedure a couple of more times.
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