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Old 05-11-2004, 06:51 PM   #1
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sally1234 HB User
Question Survival rates for no chemo during stage III

I'm looking for survival rates for some one with stage three colon cancer that has gone through the surgery. i'm not sure how many lymph nodes are affected. What is the survival rate if they don't accept Chemo. This is in the case of elderly patient (over 80). Any information would be greatly appreciated

 
Old 05-11-2004, 07:36 PM   #2
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Re: Survival rates for no chemo during stage III

Dear Sally:

Until you know how many nodes are positive for cancer, it's almost impossible to put a 5 year-survival statistic to it. If more than 3 regional lymph nodes are involved, then the 5 year survival rate goes down pretty significantly. So, depending on how many nodes and what kind of cancer will place it as Stage IIIA, B, or C and survival rates can range according to different literature anywhere between 20-65%.

So, it's probably best to wait for the path report. The oncologist will probably NOT recommend chemo in a patient greater than 80-- depending on the oncologist. I can tell you if I were 80, I wouldn't do chemo, regardless of the sub-staging based on nodal involvement. Ask the oncologist for statistics.

I'm 31 Stage IIIC Rectal Cancer survivor and am fighting like heck, and the oncologist I have has that same approach. He feels that I am too young to chance a relapse, or liver/lung involvement in another year or two.

I hope this helps. You can go to the American Cancer Society's website to find out more info at cancer.org, or run a search for 5 year cancer survival rates and ypu will come up with a bunch of info.

I wish you the best of luck, and please don't hesitate to contact us with further questions.

Last edited by CancerDad; 05-11-2004 at 07:39 PM.

 
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Old 05-12-2004, 09:30 AM   #3
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Re: Survival rates for no chemo during stage III

I know that my husband had 11 lymph nodes involved and was told he had a 50% survival rate but that everyone is different and that is why alot of people do not go by statistics. He was given aggressive chemo treatment (though only with the standard 5Fu/ leukovorin but very frequent treatments) and radiotherapy.

We have people on this board and another with stage 1V who were given a few months to live, who are still around and able to post messages. There is also a woman on another board who did not chemo from choice but changed her diet dramatically and is still going strong with no recurrence or spread up to now.

Ktee will tell you about her mother, I hope. How are things, ktee?

I agree with James that for someone over 80, I would not recommend chemo, but that does not mean she has to give up hope. There are so many variables in this situation....general health, mental attitude, etc.

Best,
__________________
Husband dx July 2003, advanced rectal cancer stage 111C; myself dx July 2006 indolent lymphoma; husband dx February 2010, stage 2 prostate cancer.

 
Old 05-13-2004, 02:48 PM   #4
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Re: Survival rates for no chemo during stage III

Sally,

By all means, Alison is right. Thanks Alison. Hope and faith are what drives all of us survivors. In fact studies have been done relating positive attitude to better outcome, with longer survival rates. So NEVER give up hope. And, maybe I was quick to say that I wouldn't do chemo at 80. I don't know how your 80 year old patient is.. if he or she is full of spunk, maybe they want to try a round or two chemotherapy to see how they tolerate it. If it drags him/her down, then she/he can always stop therapy. This is such a tough decision, one that we each need to evaluate on an individual basis, and decide what's right for us. You are your best advocate, and know your body best. These boards are great to get ideas, but we all have our own experiences, and no one is a cookie cutter. Not that we don't have a lot of insightful people here, but please have your (parent??) do what is Best for them.

I wish you and her/him the best of luck,
James aka CancerDad

Last edited by CancerDad; 05-13-2004 at 02:49 PM.

 
Old 05-14-2004, 02:01 PM   #5
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Re: Survival rates for no chemo during stage III

Hi everyone

First a word on survival stats. its important to realise that most of these stats are derived from aggregating 5 years worth of data. So 5 yrs ago the 5yr survival rate might have been only 10% versus over a 40% chance if you look at the last 12 months in isolation. In 5 years time we may well be looking at a 5yr survival rate of over 60%. There are 2 things to point out from this. First, your dad might be one of the survivors ( whichever percentage figure you care to look at ). Second, if first line treatment does not work, it will buy him time. If second line treatment does not work then they might have found something else to treat him with during that bought time. Er, not quite sure whether im making my point very clear here . I suppose i am trying to say that we are all dying from the moment we are born...... how we or the doctors try to help us stave off the inevitable is up to the choices we make and in order to make that choice we have to ask questions of ourselves and our close ones.

I had to go through those questions with my mum. She is 78 diagnosed last march at stage 4. Had bowel resection. Mild form of chemo post-op using tablet form of chemo. She stuck with it for a couple of months but made decision to stop when side effects got too bad. She didnt lose any hair and did not have sickness. The effects were linked to her heart/blood problems. The chemo did however shrink the tumours in her liver. She is now a good 8 months on from stopping the chemo and 14 months since resection. She has slowed down a little but still driving the car ( scary cos she is just about blind as a bat !!! ) drinking gin and playing cards. She has "put her house in order" as they say in readiness for her end and spiritually she is at peace.

Sorry this has turned into a right old ramble !!!

Husband diagnosed 6 weeks after mum and also stage 4. He has just finished 12 months of surgery and chemo and radioT and has declared ( in front of witnesses i may add ) that he will return to work June 7th. Hurrah. The docs all agree that he played a major part in his recovery due to his positive and practical attitude. We are not spiritual people. We did not talk about his cancer endlessly but approached the nitty gritty questions as if we were drawing up a battle plan i suppose. I did ask him if he wanted to know about prognosis and "that kind of stuff" but he said he did not want to know about statistics (this was complete opposite to what mum wanted). his thoughts were that it doesnt matter what happened to anybody else.... he was him ( terrible grammar.... sorry ) and the only statistic he was interested in was making the percentages of survival even better. So far it is working.

Hope you managed to get through the above without taking an interlude.

Regards
Ktee

 
Old 05-14-2004, 02:50 PM   #6
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Re: Survival rates for no chemo during stage III

Hi Ktee,

I think all of you, that is your Mum, your husband and you have got this far with a similar attitude.....not to give up and certainly not to lose your sense of humour! You say you ramble but your posts are always full of information and help to others. You are an inspiration to me personally. My husband is to have his prostate surgery (TURP) on Monday and we hope it will work so that the catheter can come out at last. He will then have scans and blood tests at the end of the month to see how the chemo did its work. We are all going through a long, hard battle but we cannot give in!!
__________________
Husband dx July 2003, advanced rectal cancer stage 111C; myself dx July 2006 indolent lymphoma; husband dx February 2010, stage 2 prostate cancer.

 
Old 05-14-2004, 04:35 PM   #7
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Re: Survival rates for no chemo during stage III

Alison:
Thinking of you and your husband. Good Luck on his Prostate procedure Monday! I'm sure all will go well. And BEGONE with that Foley cath! Make him do it in the hospital, and they will send him home straight cathing... it's soooo much easier and more comfortable. Chances are he may need to do that for a little while to make certain he is completely emptying. I am confident though that it won't be for long.

Have a great weekend, enjoy your time together, and please keep us posted after Monday.

Regards,
James aka CancerDad

 
Old 05-14-2004, 04:37 PM   #8
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Re: Survival rates for no chemo during stage III

Thanks James...I will keep you updated!
__________________
Husband dx July 2003, advanced rectal cancer stage 111C; myself dx July 2006 indolent lymphoma; husband dx February 2010, stage 2 prostate cancer.

 
Old 05-17-2004, 06:20 PM   #9
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Mclagh HB User
Re: Survival rates for no chemo during stage III

I guess this post is for everyone. I read a really good quote recently by Mark Twain:

There are three kinds of lies; lies, damned lies, and statistics.


Thinking of getting t-shirts made?
Sharon

 
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