I'm sorry your Dad has lung cancer. It's very difficult to watch someone close to you suffering symptoms of cancer and its treatment. When they worsen it's only natural to worry the cancer is getting worse, although it doesn't necessarily mean that. Your Dad's doctor will be the best person to ask about these things.
The causes of symptoms vary. They can be due to side effects from certain cancer treatments. But the cancer itself can also cause them. Most symptoms can be relieved with the right care and treatment. This is why it's important your Dad discusses his concerns with his doctor, who will be able to assess his needs and suggest the best ways to help him.
People with advanced cancer often lack energy and feel tired. Doctors call this ‘fatigue'. Fatigue is the most common side effect of cancer treatment. Fatigue due to cancer treatment is different from everyday tiredness. It can occur suddenly. Unlike everyday tiredness, it's not necessarily brought on by exercise or a long day's activity. Resting doesn't always help relieve the fatigue. Fatigue can be overwhelming. It can touch many parts of your life. Fatigue can affect how you think as well as how you feel.
You and your Dad may find it helpful to read Tiredness with cancer (fatigue) (from a UK-based cancer patient site).
Loss of appetite, weight loss and low moods are also common side effects for people in the advanced stages of cancer. Your Dad's lung cancer may make him breathless. Breathlessness often makes it difficult to eat. It takes a lot of energy to chew and swallow! If he's not eating much he's going to lose weight. Feeling tired all the time and not being able to eat much leads to low mood and sometimes depression.
See the following pages on our site:
To speak with a cancer nurse, call the Cancer Helpline on 13 11 20.
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