Gullet (oesophagus) cancer

A support group for anyone affected by gullet cancer (also known as oesophageal cancer) to come together, share experiences and ask questions.

Post op pain relief and advice for Mum

Posted by
Mum is now 13 days post op. She's doing ok but is taking eight 500 mg paracetamol a day and she's still in a lot of pain. Is there anything else better she could take and for how long? She's also got a plastic thing to blow into. I'm not sure how and when she should use this. She's got a sheet of exercises to do from the hospital. I'm going to start her on these today twice a day. Mum says I'm like a prison warden!! Also the GP told me yesterday she should be on 2500 calories a day. Is that right? She's got a stomach feeder with a 1000 cal bag overnight and is managing some food. She had some porridge, a cream eclair yesterday and some hummus, taramasalata, crackers and half a salmon and cream cheese sandwich and a bottle of fortisip and some chocs!
Posted by

Hi Viv

When I was discharged at day 12 they gave me soluble paracetemol and tramadol, and tramadol was what i was having in hospital.

The pain will ease each day and it will help if your Mum can do gentle exercise, I found walking a little helped for me. Compared with in hospital your Mum will inevitably be more active at home and thus may incur more pain.

I also found that I couldn't sleep on my side until about 8-10 weeks after surgery, and being able to sleep on my side after that is still magical - small things eh?

If she carries on eating little and often, and ideally high calorie stuff then she will gain weight. Be mindful that she eats very slowly and little, otherwise she may experience "dumping syndrome" which is horrible - extreme tummy pains, sweating, palpitations, runny nose and sometimes retching/sickness. I had it half a dozen times in the early days and it took 1 - 2 hours to pass, I still get it from time to time and not always a logical explanation.

Good luck, love and cwtchs, Hilary

Posted by
Thank you again Hilary. I'll ask for tramadol from the nurses. Thanks for the eating advice. She's making good progress. Slowly though. Is funny she thought there was a seige in the hospital whilst she was there!! She was convinced it happened. I think it must be the morphene.
Posted by
Hi vivik I had tramadol after hospital and found it was the best treatment for me with regards to eating its right what they say littLe and often I got fed up hearing them words but it's the right way I thought it was 2000 calories for a woman and 2500 for a man just because of the way men and women are made but the doctor would know better I had problems eating and still do so I need a supplement called maxijul which I add to drinks and food it's tasteless and very soluble Best wishes to you and your mum Steve w
Posted by
Thank you Steve. I'll have a chat with the nurse about Tramadol. The district nurse said its an opiate so it might make mum go a bit loopy but ill see what the upper GI nurse says tomorrow. Best wishes to you. Viv
Posted by

Hi Viv,

Glad to hear mum is progressing well. 

Viv x

Posted by

I found that I had a bit of a downward slide following first week after discharge .Think I overdid it plus when wounds less numb and healing I ended up with pain ! 

My experience ( everyone is different of course  ) was that slow release Tramadol wasn't doing it and I had to move back to di hydrocodine . Which made me hideously constipated .

Laxido sorted  constipation in end but wish I'd taken sooner .

I find that the fortified drinks are v high in glucose and unless taken with some complex carbohydrates ( granary toast ,porridge ) they gave me awful late dumping ,for which you need to take something sweet quickly.

Sounds like your mum is doing well . I think just eating what you fancy is best approach to begin with . I wouldn't worry too much about a specific nos of calories ,though I think the body uses more calories when it's healing after an op .So get down what you can .