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1/25/2017 Latest post:
Welcome to Mom's story. To preface mom's current journey, I'll go back 4 years to the removal of a neuroendocrine tumor from her pancreas. She had what they call a Whipple procedure to remove the tumor. While removing the tumor, they also removed portions of her stomach, her gallbladder, pancreas and intestine. What was supposed to be a 3-7 day hospital day turned into a 32 day hospital stay and a 50 day nursing home stay. Since that time, mom has had numerous health issues, some related, some not related to the Whipple surgery. Most noticeable has been her significant weight loss of over 80 pounds, leaving her very thin. Over the past 4 years, she has been diagnosed with fibrosis of the lungs, mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) (an infection in her lungs, which has required a daily antibiotic for the past 18 months), as well as rheumatoid arthritis which requires a weekly injection of methotrexate and a 6 hour infusion of remicade every 6-8 weeks to help her manage the RA. She has become noticeably more fragile in the last 6 months to a year, little by little, and has been having difficulty getting enough air. It's not that she is short of oxygen, as her oxygen levels are good, it's that she has diminished lung capacity. She went to visit my brother in Seattle over Christmas and didn't feel 100% out there. When she came back, she was quite a bit weaker and alot more fatigued, not being able to walk very far, or stand up for very long, just generally very weak, along with no appetite. Which brings us to her current state.