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Old 12-26-2006, 06:33 PM   #1
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Husband has stage 1b - should we proceed with chemo?

my husband was diagnosed with stage 1b nslc and just had his upper left lobe removed 11/7. Thankfully the lymph nodes were clear - unfortunately he also was diagnosed with kidney cancer and will have a partical removal of his left kidney in mid-january - the oncologist is talking about chemotherapy after the next surgery, but says it will only improve his chances 3.9%. We don't know what to do - he has some other health issues and the concern is will the chemo do more harm than good? Doc also says there is a 20% chance the lung cancer will appear again. This 5 year time period everyone speaks of, is it certain that if you have lung cancer, your life expectancy drops? I'm terrified...

 
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Old 12-27-2006, 09:38 AM   #2
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DADDY'SLILGIRL HB User
Re: Husband has stage 1b - should we proceed with chemo?

Sorry to hear about your husbands dx. My father and your husband are almost in the same boat. My father has Stage 2 NSCLC but also has stomach cancer. He underwent his lobectomy on 12/8 and will undergo stomach surgery in early Jan. My father will undergo chemo after that; I have the same questions you do. Is the chemo going to cure? Pronlong? or just make him so sick he is misrable ?

Sorry I can't help you but your in the right place for answers and support. Good luck to you both!

 
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Old 12-27-2006, 10:04 AM   #3
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Re: Husband has stage 1b - should we proceed with chemo?

Thanks for responding - I've never been on a forum before, but am looking for help and support - good luck to your Dad and the rest of your family. I'll be asking the doctors lots of questions, before we proceed.

 
Old 12-27-2006, 10:10 AM   #4
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Re: Husband has stage 1b - should we proceed with chemo?

Quote:
Originally Posted by beachbabe26
my husband was diagnosed with stage 1b nslc and just had his upper left lobe removed 11/7. Thankfully the lymph nodes were clear - unfortunately he also was diagnosed with kidney cancer and will have a partical removal of his left kidney in mid-january - the oncologist is talking about chemotherapy after the next surgery, but says it will only improve his chances 3.9%. We don't know what to do - he has some other health issues and the concern is will the chemo do more harm than good? Doc also says there is a 20% chance the lung cancer will appear again. This 5 year time period everyone speaks of, is it certain that if you have lung cancer, your life expectancy drops? I'm terrified...
My mother had stage 1b (with visceral pleural invasion) and had her right middle lobe removed in March 2005. She had no other cancer other than the lung cancer. The oncologist recommended chemotherapy to be on the safe side; I guess this is the current practice now, even for stage 1a. She had 1 injection of chemo, and was hospitalized twice for serious complications, although she is 75 and more likely to have adverse side effects from chemo. She stopped taking chemo because she felt she wouldn't make it from the chemo effects alone. The cancer came back about 6 months later, spreading to the chest lining in the form of a malignant pleural effusion. She eventually was diagnosed as being a good candidate for Tarceva (oral drug) and this has been very helpful to her. Less than 10% of people with NSCLC will respond favorably to the Tarceva, so we were very blessed. Your decision is a very tough one, and create some conflict among our family as to whether or not she shouldn't have stopped the chemo so soon. Your husband's case is even more complicated. It helps to pray for guidance and ask many many questions from the surgeons and oncologists. Kris

 
Old 12-27-2006, 10:20 AM   #5
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Re: Husband has stage 1b - should we proceed with chemo?

The oncologist is not pushing him to have the chemo - in fact, he said if it were him, he would not go through it himself. My husband's tumor was right up to the edge of the viseral pleural, so the doc said it was borderline on whether to proceed with the chemo - the drug you mention sounds interesting - i'll have to google it and maybe mention to our doc. thanks so much and i hope your Mom continues on a good path. I'm so anxious to have the kidney surgery over and diagnosed, to be sure that these two cancers are each primary and not something that has spread...

 
Old 12-27-2006, 10:59 AM   #6
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Re: Husband has stage 1b - should we proceed with chemo?

Hi I'm Nancy and I have kidney cancer they removed my left kidney in may and 3 weeks later they found tumor in spine they removed that end of may. My Dr. has me on nexavar this is only for kidney cancer. They had me do 15 days of Rad. knowing it will not cure cancer just maybe freze it. I had 2 ct scan now and both have come clear. We dont know if the medication is helping but so far no tumor has poped up. its is in my blood so one day it will come back but w/ kidney cancer no none treatment out only Nexavar I dont know if this helps or not my prayers w/ all of you. Thank you

 
Old 12-27-2006, 11:39 AM   #7
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Re: Husband has stage 1b - should we proceed with chemo?

Sorry to hear about your husband, To proceed with chemo is a tough decision. I can tell you that I have met quite a few people that had lung cancer caught in the early stages and all had surgery to remove it and then some had chemo and or radiation and others had nothing more and I met them 20-30 yrs later. I am sure there is the flip side too people that had further treatment and then had the cancer come back. No one but God knows what will happen so we have to make choices and put our faith in it being the right choice for us. That is the best any of us can do.

After my mom's own experience with NSCLC stage IV. I myself feel and pray that in the very near future lung cancer will be treated with the biological drugs such as Tarceva and Avastin and the cancer vaccines and that chemo will be a thing of the past.

My mom's chemo was not the horror stories we all grew up hearing about but it did leave her very fatigued especailly her 4th line treatment as it does take a toll on the body.The fatigue got so bad that in Oct 2006 she opted to quit taking chemo for fear it would kill her before the cancer did.But to be honest my mom had it pretty easy compared to many here.

Her 2nd line treatment,Irressa ( now off the market)started in 12/04 changed to Tarceva 1/05 did away with the actual cancer in my mom's lung and did work on her liver mets for a few months but they then stopped responding and she was back on chemo, anyway when she died in Nov. 2006 she still had no cancer in her lungs. She also did not suffer any really bad side effects from Tarceva, she had an acne rash like a teenager, dry skin, dry cracked finger tips but being that it gave her life back and did away with any breathing trouble she considered that all a very small price to pay. The sad truth is Tarceva only works for a small percent of people but when it does it can do great things. There is a drug called HKI 272 in clinical trials now that is suppose to take over when the cancer mutates so Tarceva quits working.

Take things you learn hear and prepare some questions for the doctors but be warned some seem reluctant to try Tarceva and Avastin ( both are very expensive drugs)also some doctors are so busy with patients they do not know what is going on with the clinical trials as my mom's oncologist did not know what HKI 272 was when I first mentioned it to him! He also did not know anything about cyberknife which is a whole story on its own. In my mom's case she had had too much chemo to be able to get in the clinical trials for HKI 272.

Read books on nutrition too, one called Beating cancer with Nutrition is excellent and the guy that wrote it was the top nutritionist for Cancer Treatment Centers of America.

You have so many decisions to make that I pray God helps to lead you on the path that is correct for your husband. Feel free to ask as many questions you would like here as there are many that can help or just offer support when you need it.

I will add you and your husband to my prayers.
I do not know if you are a praying person but research done with aides patients showed that prayer did help, even when it was done by people that never met the person they were praying for so ask people to pray for your husband as it could make a difference. JanMarie

 
Old 01-22-2007, 04:46 PM   #8
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Re: Husband has stage 1b - should we proceed with chemo?

Just got semi good news today - my husband had a partial nephrectomy on 1/12 and although it was kidney cancer, they say they got it all. CAT scans to follow regularly. We still have not made a decision about the chemo for the lung, but will be asking lots of questions of the oncologist.
Thank you all for your comments.

 
Old 01-23-2007, 07:36 AM   #9
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Re: Husband has stage 1b - should we proceed with chemo?

that must be some relief to you and your husband congratulations on your good news and i pray there is much more of it to come.

 
Old 01-23-2007, 10:53 AM   #10
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Re: Husband has stage 1b - should we proceed with chemo?

Quote:
Originally Posted by beachbabe26 View Post
Just got semi good news today - my husband had a partial nephrectomy on 1/12 and although it was kidney cancer, they say they got it all. CAT scans to follow regularly. We still have not made a decision about the chemo for the lung, but will be asking lots of questions of the oncologist.
Thank you all for your comments.
What a relief.My husband was diag with LC may 05 and the first surgeon we saw gave us little hope. Maybe he said he could operate but felt that the recovery would be worse then doing nothing. We saw a second surgeon who said no problem he could get the 10 cm tumor out and he did by taking dh's right upper lobe outeven though he had to resection his bronci tube he found no lymph node involvement.He also told us chemo was an option as a just incase measure. We went to a lung cancer center near us and dh was given taxol and carbplatain for 4 rounds. No it was not easy on him but with all the drugs that they have to use to combat side effects he could work through out his treatments. To us this was not a hard choice but to many it is and we did pray for guidance and it led us down the road we chose.He is going on two years now and NED has been found.For us this was the right way to go as for others no chemo is right for them.
prayers to you and your husband

BTW they staged my husband as maybe a 3b but couldn't be sure until after surgery. He was then staged as 1b also

Last edited by lorriem; 01-23-2007 at 10:58 AM.

 
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