Pancreatic Cancer Action
1,347 members249 posts

My mum

Hi, I'm a newbie to this site, just thought perhaps joining would help this awful journey. Mum, who is 83, has been diagnosed with pancreatic, liver and lung cancer. As if hearing this news wasn't devasting enough, 5 days following her diagnosis my dad died. Mum had kidney cancer last year, had the kidney (and cancer) removed and the doctors don't think this pancreatic cancer is connected to the kidney cancer.

She's decided not to undergo any treatment, I've since been told that there isn't any treatment options available anyhow. So now after nursing and watching my poor old dad pass away, I'm straight into the same process with mum. She's doing OK at the moment, is very down to earth and accepting of her situation, even joking to me that perhaps I can get 'buy one get one free' on funeral deals!

We don't really know how long she had, nobody has given us that news, maybe they don't know... One nurse said 'perhaps weeks/months' but that's as far as we know. Not sure I want to know - does it help?

The hospice at home team are wonderful, mum wants to stay at home if at all possible (we managed to keep dad at home) and at the moment she's doing OK, lost loads of weight and very little appetite. The thoughts of losing mum so soon after my dad is just the worst thing ever, I'm very close to them both and although I'm usually a pretty strong person I'm really find it hard to deal with.

Well that's me! I'm not sure why I've written this but hope that by just being in touch with others in a similar position will help me in some small way. Thanks for reading this x

10 Replies

Hi I am so sorry to read that you lost your dad and then you get this awful news about your mum. I lost my Dad to PC 2 1/2 years ago and they couldn't give us straight answers for the time he had left. The same as you we were told "Not months..." he lasted eleven weeks from diagnosis.

Your mum sounds very much like my Dad was, making light of the situation, but that's always our way and not everyone gets it do they? It doesn't help to know how long, just enjoy every second you have with her. It helps if there are goals, with Dad it was my fiftieth and Christmas (He was diagnosed 20th October 2009), he managed both and enjoyed them thoroughly. We spent a lot of time talking, reminiscing, laughing and yes, crying, it brought us even closer than we were already. We talked about the end and what he wanted, which was to go in the local Sue Ryder Hospice and he did...within ten minutes of arriving!

I hope you can enjoy the time you have left with your mum as much as possible

Take care

Jayne x


So sorry to read this. What a dreadful time for you. Weight loss and loss of appetite are all part of this dreadful cancer. My husband was diagnosed December 2011. He had 7 sessions of chemo but couldn't cope with the side effects and stopped in March. We have had a reasonablde Summer but sadly his pain levels are increasing and his energy levels decreasing so I am aware its a downward spiral from here. We have a lot of support from our hospice too but so far we are coping without them being here other than to call in and check how we are doing. I have had a huge amount of support from a group on facebook. Are you on facebook. I have to admit I would have probably got fed up with facebook by now but don't know how I would have coped without the group's support. They are called Families in Support of Pancreatic Awareness. They are just people who are dealing in one way or another with this disease but they have a wealth of experience to share. I would strongly suggest you joined if you can. There are a couple of things that help my hubby. One is creons which help digest his food and the other is clexane injections which stop his blood from clotting. He did have a clot in January which can also be a symptom. It might be worth checking both of these out with your GP. Wishing you all the best. Sandra.


Hi there,

Sorry to hear about your dad and that your mum has this disease.

She sounds terrific. Take your lead from her. Enjoy the time together. I lost both my parents in quick succession and it is hard. However they had great lives and were in their 80's and 90's. I found the grieving part quite tough but mad sure I got lots of support. Friends, family and a great counsellor. Look after yourself too.

Ironically last year I was diagnosed with inoperable PC and am on a weekly chemo regime. I was 58. No sign of it in our family.

Best wishes,

Maz x



You are being so strong and you obviously get your strength from your mum with her great sense of humour. My partner had pancreatic cancer and fortunately they could operate because although he had cancer on the liver, it was a different one. All this started for me in January and I thought I was strong but I nearly fell apart.

I think it does you good to write about it, even though we are all strangers but we are all in the same boat and have had to undergo this awful journey.

Try and take care of yourself, that's what everyone keeps saying to me because you don't want to make yourself ill either.

Wishing you lots and lots of luck, Facebook sounds like a good idea too suggested by Sandra who replied to you.

All the very best,



Good morning,

so sorry to hear your news and may i express my sadness that you have to cope with this on top of losing your father so recently.We too lost our sister to pancreatic cancer in March so we have an idea how you are feeling.If your mum continues to have a poor appitite we found sweet things were still very much appreciated and also the doctors prescribed some high calorie drinks and soups which when chilled or heated up she enjoyed.The macmillian service were very good at recommending things so please get in contact with them through either the surgery or the hospice.We will be thinking of you and your mum and send you strength to cope.Best wishes Loraine


So very very sorry to hear your news. I lost my darling hubby to this evil evil disease in April of this year, 3 weeks after diagnosis. My thoughts are with you, but wish to echo Sandras comment about the Families in Support of Cancer Awareness site. It has been an absolute lifeline to me. I am sure you would find it helpful.


Thank you so much for all the lovely messages of support - my heart goes out to each and every one of you. There's been some great tips and advice so far and I've just joined the FB group as many of you seem to support this and find it useful. Mum's doing OK, I went back to work this week and so far she's coped at home with friends popping in to see she's OK, and me leaving her flasks of hot drinks and soup. Had a struggle getting Social Services to play ball but after many frantic phone calls we will hopefully have some care support starting this week. Dad's funeral is on Monday so preparing for that now, psyching myself up to try and stay strong for mum throughout. We've hired her a wheelchair - she's still able to walk with the help of a wheely zimmer thing, but thought it would relieve the strain all round if she doesn't have to try. I just hope it doesn't take too much out of her but she's so positive and upbeat, she really won't have me 'weeping and wailing' as she calls it! She even dismissed the idea of me having counselling 'it's crap, we lived through the war' is her opinion! But hey, life is different now and I'm grateful to give it a go, anything to help me get through all this is very welcome.

Hope you all have a lovely weekend, again, thanks for all your messages xx


hi sunshine40,

sometimes i feel so guilty being a lucky one who has had the whipple operation, 6 months of chemo and now currently free of the dreaded PC and 11 months already, but there is hope and i have began fund raising because... i am able to..... and your story just gives me the drive to help and support others who are just starting the journey to raise awareness, so others can be the lucky ones... my heart goes out to you and happy to support in any way i can

Dane x


What a wonderful reply Wildleigh, congratulations and lots of love for beating the disease and being supportive after all you have been through, my Mum passed away from Pancreatic cancer 3 years ago after a week of diagnosis, she was 77. Awareness is a very important thing, I have had education in general health matters but had never considered the pancreas at all, it is a silent killer if undiagnosed xxxx


I'm so sorry to hear of your terrible news, Im a newby too, I lost my husband to pancreatic cancer in September 2011, it was 6 weeks from diagnosis to when we lost him and I then also lost my dad in June to liver cancer. It is such an awful disease and i wish more could be done to treat it. I'm not sure if it helps but I get a great deal of comfort from raising funds for the ward that looked after my husband and also for the PCRF.


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