End-stage of cancer, also known as also known as Stage 4 cancer, it is the stage when the cancer has spread into the blood vessels and lymphtic system and travels to other areas of the body, and finally results to death due to the function failure of organs and the immune system.
Signs of end-stage cancer
The signs of end-stage cancer depend on the type of cancer and the patient’s physical condition. Most of the patients with end-stage cancer are caused by chronic diseases which have not been properly treated or noticed. For example, the persistant cough, and the irregular excretion, unexplained abdominal pain or headache, the palpate or solid lump in the organs. When these symptoms appear, it may imply that the cancer may spread to other organs.
In addition, the cancer will also affects directly to the patient mentally. For example, the symptoms of fatigue or diziness, the constant weight loss due to the inability to eat properly, the insufficient nutrition will weaken the immune system and worsen the health condition.
Symptoms of end-stage cancer
Most of the time, when a cancer that reaches stage 4, the body and organs will gradually lose their functions, it also affects other areas it has spread to, making the symptoms more and more obvious.
- Respiratory system. The patient may have the difficulty in breathing, there will be coughing with phlegm or other secretions, and the persistant and worsening cough will make the patient exhausted;
- Digestive system. Due to the chemotherapy’s side effects on the digestive system, the process of digestion will be slow down, it may cause the symptoms of bloating, nausea or vomiting;
- Excretion system. As the patient’s digestive system is worsened, the patient may need to take the medicine to help with the excretion. There may be blood in the stools, as the intestinal bleeding caused by the chemotherapy;
- Severe pain. The severe pain will worsen the patient’s health condition with a decrease in appetite, causing insomnia and so on.
End-stage cancer care plan
Depend on the different physical conditions and symptoms of the advanced stage cancer patients. The advanced stage cancer care can be categorized into 4 types:
- Caring. Take care of the patient’s physicial condition by providing them the maximum convenience as possible, for example, regularly talking or asking about their symptoms of pain and feeling;
- Nutrition. Most of the time, the patients of advanced stage cancer will have a decrease in appitite. More attention should be paid to providing sufficient nutritions to them with variety of food;
- Medicine. The physicians or family should constantly ask about the patients’ feelings or symptoms, and closely monitor their taking medicine and food as the doctor’s suggestion;
- Mental health. The patient of advance stage cancer needs the encouragement from the people around. The physicians or family should take to them from time to time by giving them positive encouragement and help them to calm. Those care providers should also prepare any emergency cases like the mood swing.
Is end-stage cancer curable?
Normally when the cancer comes to stage 4, the treatment options are palliative and intended only to reduce pain and make the patient as comfortable as possible. When the cancer comes into stage 4, the cancer is rarely curable. Therefore, the purpose of the treatment of stage 4 cancer patients is usually to relieve the pain from suffering, and improve the life quality as much as possible.
For most of the patients of stage 4 cancer, their immunity cells are normally lower than the normal level, making the foreign substances enter the body and cause the infection easily. The NK Cell immunotherapy can be an option to enhance the patient’s immune system, helping to improve the quality of life in the final stage.
Another effective for the cancer treatment in the stage 4 is called Chimeric Antigen Receptor T Cell (CART-T Cell) therapy, it is an effective immunotherapy treatment that uses specially altered T cells to more specifically target cancer cells. Therefore, it is also a promising cancer treatment besides the alternative medicine and traditional treatments.