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Thread: 82 yr old cousin stage 4 lung cancer Adenocarcinoma

  1. #1
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    Question 82 yr old cousin stage 4 lung cancer Adenocarcinoma

    We just found out on Friday that my cousin has stage 4 lung cancer that has spread to her lymph nodes and brain. We are waiting for the call from the cancer center for her first appointment to meet with the oncologist and radiologist.

    I have some questions.

    Do you have to do another biopsy for mutations and immunotherapy options or does the first biopsy provide that info? She needs radiation on her brain and lung and also chemo. Will they do the radiation on her brain at the same time she has chemo or does she have to wait for chemo to be over?

    How often will chemo be?

    We are all very distressed over this news.

    i would appreciate any input. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Administrator Top User lisa1962's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear about your cousin Applyn and fully understand how distressing this news is.

    A couple of things, what is it your cousin's wishes as far as treatment? I only say this given her age and how challenging treatment can be. Of course there are many that do very well but it can be very harsh. In an attempt to answer your questions, stage 4 is not considered curable sadly but again, we have several on this forum who are living life to it's fullest at stage 4.

    It is my understanding, mutation testing may or may not be done from the sample taken from the biopsy to confirm the cancer diagnosis so I would discuss this with your Cousins oncologist. As far as chemo and radiation, yes, they may run concurrently. If your cousins does opt for chemotherapy, it will be based on the type of cancer agents used and your cousin's overall health.

    I do believe, that once you have met with the oncologist, questions relating to what will be the course of action will be clarified. Please do come back and let us know and at that point, we can answer your questions more specifically.

    Again, sorry to hear of your cousins diagnosis and your cousin is very lucky to have someone advocating for her.

    Lisa

  3. #3
    Hi

    Sorry you have a need to be here. You should review this National Comprehensive Cancer Network Guidelines.
    I hope you find them helpful.

    mike
    At the time - 46 yo male, non-smoker
    Sept 2012 - DX - One tumor NSCLC Squamous Cell Right Upper Lung
    Oct 2012 - TX - Treatment similar to Pancoast Tumor - Pre-operation radiation and chemo (5.5 weeks of IGRT and 3 cycles of Cisplatin and Etoposide)
    Dec 2012 - Surgery - Remove RUL, Surgical Pathology Report Adenocarcinoma T2N0M0
    Now - Wait, watch, & pray

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    Hi Lisa,
    Thank you for replying.

    My cousin goes back and forth between wanting to do nothing and wanting chemo and radiation. She is very upset over this news.

    The cancer center called yesterday and we have an appointment with the radiation dr. tomorrow. I am anxious to hear what she has to say.

    I just found out that my brother’s wife has inflammatory breast cancer.
    All of this news is really depressing and I am spending my time researching both of these cancers.

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    Mike,
    Thank you. I have read the guidelines.
    Applyn

  6. #6
    Administrator Top User lisa1962's Avatar
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    Applyn:

    I am sorry to hear about another family member who has received a cancer diagnosis. It definitely is overwhelming. What I will offer is to be cautious when researching unless it is through legitimate sites. I would also not put too much thought into the survival or statistics as they are outdated or, more importantly, based on the overall population not constructed on an individual basis.

    Your cousin, once she is able to digest this shocking news and in speaking with the oncologist, she may be in a more mindful state to make an informed decision. The support of her family will help in this decision but let her lead the way.

    Keep us posted and of course, we will do our best to answer your questions based on our own personal experiences.

    Lisa

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    Hi Lisa,

    The statistics that I read on both cancers are not very encouraging. However, I’ve read about a lot of people with Stage 4 lung cancer who have lived for at least five years so I am holding onto that hope.

    We met with the radiation dr today. They have to send her to another
    Hospital because they only do whole brain radiation and she needs localized radiation for the small spot on her brain. They said it is a bit tricky because the spot is near her eye so they aren’t sure which of the three hospitals they recommend until they speak to the radiation dr at each place. They are going to work on that today. We have a meeting with the oncologist late next week. The radiation dr. Said she will see what she can do to get the appointment sooner.

    One good thing that came out of the meeting is that I asked about immunotherapy. She then went and printed out the pathology report and told us that my cousin is a candidate for Keytruda. I was happy to hear that and will discuss it at greater length when we meet with the oncologist.

    Thank you so much for your feedback. I really appreciate it.

  8. #8
    Administrator Top User lisa1962's Avatar
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    Applyn:

    You are correct, sadly, regarding statistics but must stress they are based on the overall population, not on an individual. However, treatment options have come far considering how dismal they were just 10 years ago for Lung Cancer. If there is some positive news in all this, your cousin is a candidate for Keytruda which has shown encouraging results.

    Let us know how the appointment goes with the Oncologist.

    Lisa

  9. #9
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    Hi Again,
    Things have progressed quite slowly with my cousin. She had gamma knife brain radiation a week ago Tuesday and then Had her first chemo last Friday. She is currently getting her second chemo treatment as I write this. She started radiation on Her lung this past Tuesday.

    So far, the chemo has only made her tired. Of course, that was her first session. I know that it gets worse with each successive treatment. She is getting Carbo and Taxol every week for six weeks, while at the same time getting lung radiation. The chemo oncologist told me that my cousin Is a a healthy and strong 82 year old and that is why she is getting chemo. She is optimistic about this treatment for my cousin.

    I just wanted to post an update. Thanks for your support.

    Lynn

  10. #10
    Administrator Top User lisa1962's Avatar
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    Lynn:

    Thank you for updating and it sounds like your Cousin is doing fairly well.

    Keep us posted on how she is doing and of course, ask any questions that come to mind. We are always willing to answer them to the best of our abilities based on our own personal experiences.

    Lisa

 

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