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Passed away with liver cancer. Hot spice came out and morphine was given. Was in coma and just slipped away. Was this normal?

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Practicing since : 2008
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My husband passed away from liver cancer. They said he had 2 to 6 months to live but I only has him home one
day. Hotspice came out and gave him morphine every four hours. It was almost like he was in a coma. Before
he died he opened his eyes and looked at me and just slipped away. Is this the normal way this happens?
Posted Tue, 22 Oct 2013 in Cancer
Answered by Dr. Anjana Rao Kavoor 3 hours later
Brief Answer:
He was aware of your presence.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for writing in to us.

I am sorry to hear about the passing away of your husband from cancer of the liver. God Bless and may his soul rest in peace.

Cancer is such a disease that predicting the outcome gets difficult in most patients. The doctors might have said 6 months keeping his general condition in mind. As you have mentioned the liver and kidney scores were on the decline, this could be due to the disease condition itself or because of the chemotherapy drugs being given to him. Nutrition and will power also can have a positive effect in keeping the patient alive for few more months.

Morphine is a good pain reliever and opioid drug. I guess he was not in much pain when he slipped away if morphine was given regularly every four hours. He was probably in a state of partial consciousness. If he opened his eyes and looked at you then he knew that the end was near. I am sure he was aware of your presence when he left.

It happens so fast leaving you little time to think what exactly is happening. There are situations where the patient does not even open his eyes. You were lucky to say him a final Good Bye that way.

Hoping that you come out of the grief soon.
God Bless you and your family.

Any further queries are welcome.
I hope this helps,
Dr. A Rao Kavoor
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