Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Palliative care instead of chemo for late stage cancer

I've been reading this morning, I'm sorry. Over at Breast Cancer, But Doctor I Hate Pink, Ann blogged about being healthy enough for more chemo as she deals with progression of her metastatic breast cancer (and she is giving away a fitness watch). I started thinking (which can be a very bad thing) about the general yuckiness of chemotherapy and cancer treatment. I hated it. I don't know anyone who doesn't hate it. Its not fun. It makes you feel like crap, unable to eat, while 'curing' you.

Then I read about a nurse with metastatic breast cancer who opted not for cancer treatment but for palliative care. The more I read, the more I like the idea. If there is no cure, why are you spending so much time on trying to cure yourself? This route really appeals to me. She found a doctor who did not push traditional cancer treatment but went for palliative care. After five years since her diagnosis, this nurse is still feeling pretty good. And its much less expensive.

So if you had an incurable ailment where the only options were pretty  nasty - radiation, chemo, surgery - and would weaken your body, why opt for trying to cure instead of making yourself feel as good as possible? Why go bankrupt when there isn't a cure? The bankruptcy isn't just your finances but your emotions and body too.