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Old 09-23-2011, 12:28 PM   #1
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Prostate Chemo Question

Hey gang.

My 80-year old dad, who was dx with prostate cancer in 2007, recently graduated to Stage 4 status with a mass on his lung and multiple mets to his spine. As a Stage 4 rectal cancer patient myself, I'm familiar with radiation, chemo and surgery, but since I live halfway across the country, I haven't been able to meet with Dad's doctors for details on his prognosis and treatment. My mom is kind of in shock and doesn't really have a lot of useful info to pass on, as you might expect.

I do know that he's going in for his first chemo treatment in a few days. Just curious what drug or chemo cocktail he's likely to be receiving, and what the typical side effects would be. I'm hoping I can use some of my experience in coping with nausea and fatigue to help him get through it.

Also, nobody said anything about a port, but I assume that with his dx, there's a plan to implant one at some point. Am I correct in assuming that's how infusions are typically done with prostate cancer?

Thanks!

--Eric

Last edited by OTMF; 09-23-2011 at 12:28 PM.

 
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Old 09-24-2011, 07:43 AM   #2
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Re: Prostate Chemo Question

Eric

The most famous chemo for prostate cancer is docetaxel (Taxotere). The side effects may be similar to the ones you have experienced, being nausea and tiredness the ones most reported.
There is a newer drug named cabazitaxel (Jevtana) which is provided in injections but it causes similar side effects, including low white blood cells. You can read details on both chemo drugs by typing the names in a net search engine.

I hope your dad gets better.

Welcome to the board.
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Old 09-25-2011, 02:22 AM   #3
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Re: Prostate Chemo Question

Hi Eric,

The nice thing about Jevtana (cabazitaxel) is it does not seem to fail the way Taxotere (docetaxel) eventually does. They give these taxanes along with prednisone.

Dr. Scholz reported the use of cocktails with either taxane as the base and adds carboplatin, Xeloda, thalidomide, Avastin and/or curstersin.

Dr. Myers uses a cocktail of ketoconozole, estrogen and Leukine.

There are also many new drugs that your father may be eligible for including vaccines like Provenge and Yervoy. ProstVac VF, another vaccine, is in clinical trials. Alpharadin, currently on fast track for FDA approval, is a new radiopharmaceutical that destroys bone mets and relieve the associated bone pain, as does Samarium-153. Xgeva (denosumab) seems to prevent and destroy bone mets. Zytiga (abiraterone) has been shown to prevent progression.

At the recent Prostate Cancer Research Institute Conference, the new drug that had everyone talking is XL-184 (Cabozantinib). They showed PET scans demonstrating completely clearance of mets after 6-12 weeks. There are open clinical trials for it that your father may qualify for. If you go to the following link: http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/study/NCT00940225 you can check to see if your father is anywhere near any of the 46 study locations.

- Allen

 
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Old 09-26-2011, 08:16 AM   #4
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Re: Prostate Chemo Question

Interesting. Thanks to you both.

I'm on Xeloda right now. No side effects worth mentioning.

 
Old 10-17-2011, 07:15 PM   #5
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Re: Prostate Chemo Question

Hi OTMF and welcome to the Board!

I'll add a couple of points to what Baptista and Allen have already said. Medical oncologists have told us that the first round of docetaxel chemo for prostate cancer is usually quite tolerable for the patient, often without the physical effects usually associated with chemo. My impression from the talks was that nausea is usually not a substantial issue early on.

I'm wondering if your dad is getting the powerful bisphosphonate Zometa for maintaining bone mineral density and for help in coutering bone mets. It has been known to roll back bone mets in some men. Infrequently, patients develop a serious side effect known as ONJ (osteonecrosis of the jaw); there are preventive steps and corrective measures, but at times the injury is hard to bear.

I wish you well with your own case too.

Take care,

Jim

 
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