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My 83 year old dad was diagnosed with Stage 4 probable lung cancer, multiple nodules in both lungs, enlarged lymph nodes in the chest, and metastases to the bone in a few places. He was not able to undergo a biopsy, chemo or radiation due to health problems, so we are not sure if he has lung cancer or metastasis from melanoma that he had removed or prostate cancer that he had.


He is in hospice and they are so good. His pain was controlled with Fentanyl and oral hydrocodone. They stopped that, kept the patch, and they started him on oral morphine last week. I am still trying to work (7 hours away) and travel each weekend to help care for him, give support and talk about important things.


He is in his home with his girlfriend who is helping to care for him. He is eating fairly well, able to walk with help and a walker, but getting weaker and a little confused. I wanted to know what others' experiences were with similar situations and how long someone lived after starting oral morphine and similar symptoms. I want to take leave from work when I need to, but I don't have any idea about how long he might have left... Thank you for any help.

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I am back at my dad's now.
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Thank you, Jeannegibbs and freqflyer for responding. I feel so alone. It means a lot. I understand about asking hospice. I just needed to hear from some who had gone through this. Thanks again.
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I agree with ff; the best person to ask would be the hospice nurse, but even experienced hospice staff can't be precise every time.

I can understand your desire to know when to come expecting to stay until the end. If you are seeing him every week and talking about important things, that may be the best you can do for now.

Would his girlfriend agree to call you, when he starts showing signs the end is near, according to the descriptions she has been given by hospice?

It is wonderful that you have been able to spend time with him.
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journey18, it would be best to ask the Hospice Nurse as they have much more experience with this type of question.

My parents were on Hospice, and they passed on different time tables due to their individual health issues.
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