Discussion Board Forums General Discussion Two Different Opinions from Oncologists

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    Dear Tia, you are so right! And may I just add especially if you have 2 Doctors who are not on the same page, get a 3rd opinion.


    This whole condition is a learning process. I am also learning there are oncologists we would want to work with and ones that are a “No”, so I always encourage everyone to get a few opinions. They can widely differ, and your comfort level with one doctor may be better than another. You have to trust and have some level of rapport with the doctor.
    Thanks to everyone for sharing posts.


    This is a very interesting post. I had my first transfusion last week, the week before had iron because platelets went down to 63K (bummer). Now waiting for Wednesday blood draw (waiting IS the worse part of this). The week before I was hit in the spleen and at that time platelets were 80K (ok for chemo) but had pain in lower back and arms so instead of getting chemo doc sent me to Hospital since I’m at risk of heart problems (comes from my dads side). I don’t know if being hit in the spleen can cause platelets to drop, doc didn’t say much.

    Tumors were shrinking, only two more rounds of chemo then another PET scan and possible embolization. Originally was told I wasn’t candidate for radiation or surgery so everything was going great and then BANG, all goes straight to you know where. I guess that’s par for the course.

    At Banner Gateway Hospital I mentioned that I had a port (was told they all had port training) so why were they putting in an IV but was told that ports are only for putting things in not taking draws. If they didn’t know this, I certainly didn’t want them to mess with it. Have lots of bruises now. But good thing is they’re clearing up. And, I now know my blood type.



    Tia……I’m glad that Marion weighed in on this. There are often differing opinions, with treatment options and getting some top notch IR people to give their opinions as to treatment they can do would be absolutely something that would be good to pursue. At the same time, finding the cause of that anemia is pretty important and ought to be done at the same time to know exactly what you’re dealing with and how it might affect treatment and your mom’s health.



    Thanks for your responses. We will see another hematologist. If I was an oncologist, I would be reluctant giving chemo to a patient who has anemia. This will make it worse as that is a side effect of chemo where blood level can go down and become anemic.


    positivity….it’s not unusual for experts to disagree regarding the treatment options. I think it will help to obtain more opinions from interventional radiologists from a major cancer center.



    Thank you for your reply to my post. I had to come over here to read the two different diagnosises for your mom….and I have to say that they are definitely night and day.

    A couple notes i might be able to add with my newly learned into on blood transfusions, is:

    1. If a LOT of transfusions are necessary (packed red blood cells), then the body can go into iron oveerload, which is a problem to fix.
    2. Transfusions can cause an allergic reaction….or a reaction to antibodies in the donor blood which can make the recepient sick and make the transfused blood not last as long….the body can go through it way too fast.

    3. If the anemia might be caused by previous chemo, ….that is….damage to the bone marrow caused by chemo…..then yet, more chemo could end up causing more damage. If the anemia is caused because of a problem in the bone marrow at all…..chemo might make that worse even if it wasn’t caused initially by chemo.

    Have they suggested ?……1. a Periferal Blood Smear or 2. Bone marrow biopsy to look into the bone marrow as the cause.

    I’m assuming here that they’ve run tests up the wazoo already to try to find the cause of the anemia and they’ve eliminated possible sources of internal bleeding (like colon).

    That’s probably not a very “medical” explaination, pretty simplistic but the best I can explain right now……., but it may give you a little insight as to why a doctor wouldn’t want to rely on transfusions or maybe do a chemo until they know why that anemia is there.

    I’m sure if someone else sees this who has more medical expertise, they might have some thoughts as well.



    My mom has CC in both hepatic ducts and surgery is not an option.
    She has anemia, and that has not been resolved, other than blood transfusions as needed. We still have not got a source.

    We saw 2 oncologists and here are the different views so far.

    1. Does not want to give chemo or recommend clinical trials until the source of anemia is taken care of. He said chemo may do more harm than good. It was suggested that SIRTEX radiation or radioembolization therapy will be effective. We still need to go to a follow up with the surgeon, radiologist, and oncologist.

    2. This oncologist suggested the anemia is not a problem and if it is can rely on transfusions. He suggested stereotactic radiation, and suggested that SIRTEX would not work. He also wants to give the chemo drug Xeloda after radiation.

    Has anyone tried the above treatments, and how effective is it?

    Thank you!

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