Discussion Board Forums Introductions! Relying on chemo

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  • #100808
    bglass
    Moderator

    Hi Hesw,

    It is nice to hear from you, and you ask an interesting question about what to expect from chemo.  While patients hope chemo will shrink their tumors, for many the chemo stabilizes the cancer and keeps it from growing and spreading.  This situation, often called “stable disease,” is also a good result.  When despite the chemo, the cancer begins to grow or spreads to other parts of the body, doctors will assess that the treatment is no longer working and will switch the patient to another option.

    It is normal with our cancer for patients to move from one treatment to the next.  Our doctors usually have a plan in mind for the next step should the current treatment start to lose effectiveness.  It is also not uncommon for our doctors to suggest antidepressants if they appear potentially beneficial.  Having cancer can be stressful and it is important that patients stay positive, as you note, and maintain a good quality of life.

    Please stay in touch and let us know how you are doing.

    Regards, Mary

     

     

    #100805
    Hesw
    Participant

    Hello there

    All your posts are of interest to me.
    And I would like to say, thanks for you all being there.

    I recently had gem / cis chemo for 3 months and being new to discovering I had Advanced localized intrahepatic CC , I was absolutely horrified to find out that not only did this type of chemo not work, but the tumours had grown significantly during  the treatment.
    er Im trying not to blame myself as I understand from everyone who know anything about cancer that you can make the tumours grow if a you are angry , anxious etc. That also was frightening for me because  Inhad to have therapy before for alcoholism and eating disorders when I was younger and I have a nervous type of personality All that has stopped now . Not a particularly stable person.As you know; it does take time to adjust to the illness and all the lifestyle relationship changes that go with it. And with that goes anger, anxiety and self doubt / blame  in my case .  Very up and down time. I ve decided to take anti depressants in an effort to stay calmer.

    Has any one ever had tumours grow that then were able at some time to be successfully shrunk or do they generally stay at the same size.?

    All comments welcome.

    #100719
    vtkb
    Participant

    I’m sorry to hear about the metastasis.  Has your tumor been genetically profiled? Some mutations can lend themselves to good responses to chemo or open up immunotherapy or checkpoint inhibitor drugs as a treatment option.

    Regarding your main question- I can tell you my wife has been through countless chemo treatments- you can search her posts here on the forum (36 yr old with CC-update) – but to quickly summarize it has been: Gem/Cis for 5 months on a 2 week on, one week off cycle.  Then surgery, then 3 months of gem ox on a every other week cycle, then radiation with like a week of xeloda (she got meningitis, long story), then a year of NAD.  Unfortunately she had a recurrence/mets to the lungs, skull and spine in Dec 2018 (really october, but found in dec) and has been on chemo ever since- Gem/ox every other week for about 9 months, then every 3 weeks bc it was affecting her blood counts too much for about another 9? months, and now Folfori every 2 weeks for the last 5 months.  She has the ATM mutation which is sensitive for platinum drugs so that helps.  She worked for the first two years of chemo as a physical therapist.  The cisplatin did cause some hearing issues. The folfori kicks her butt/appetite for 2 days. She has been given neupogen or neulasta since the meningitis with each chemo even though with the folfori her counts arent affected as much.  It’s been a 4+ year fight so far, we’ve lost count on what cycle of chemo we are on.  This past year she’s lost some weight.

    Others get hand -foot issues (I hear xeloda can cause it), extreme fatigue, brain fog, nausea but thankfully my wife hasnt really experienced much of any of that other than in the very beginning.  I wish you all the luck to continue with your treatments.

    • This reply was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by vtkb.
    #100717
    Chemocure
    Participant

    Hello….I was informed about CCF by my dentist whose sister had CC. I appreciate the opportunity to read the experiences of others and to share mine as well.

    Like others I have been searching for information to better understand this disease and what to expect in the future. I was diagnosed in June 2019, scheduled for resection in July that was aborted due to metastasis. Gall bladder removal, infection from plastic stents, sepsis and abcess followed. I began chemo in late July and continued for 12 cycles into March. A laparoscopy in July showed no metastasis and resection was scheduled for a second time. It gave me so much hope. Once again, metastasis was found and surgery aborted. Chemo (gem & cis) resumed in September.

    I have been extremely fortunate that I can function almost normally while on chemo. Some fatigue for a day or two appears to be the worst symptom.

    My question is, how long can chemo continue without detrimental effects on my body? I have completed 17 cycles.

    Rick

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