Topic: Some hard numbers....

Hey kids - told you I'd be back.  And here I sit in chemo, and I'll sit and I'll sit.  I'm a bit jealous of the folks that have just Gemsar to take - I'd be outta here in half an hour if it weren't for all the fluids that get pushed with the Gemsar/Cisplatin combo.  Buuuut, it's hard to argue with the following numbers:

PET DATA
SUV from my Tumor (09/09) - 12.6
SUV from my Tumor (02/10) - 3.5

SUV from my lymph nodes (09/09) - 14.1
SUV from my lymph nodes (02/10) - 5.5

The math on the cancerous activity as measured by the PET shows a 72% reduction in activity in my liver tumor, and 61% reduction in the lymph nodes.  I received a total of 6 cycles of chemo during this time.  That's crazy good news. 

In other news, I came across this article recently and brought it up with my oncologist:  http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20100309/ts … apanpapaya

He's cool with me brewing and drinking the papaya leaf tea, and as I said last time, I'll do just about anything if it might help fight this bugger.  The word on the street was that papaya leaf tea is a bit bitter.  That would be the understatement of the year.  It's some pretty wretched stuff, so best to chug it. 

I also cut out pretty much all refined sugar from my diet.  This is really because I have a horrible sweet tooth and the more I indulge, the more I want.  There are those (Anti-Cancer, for one) that argue sugar just "feeds" cancer....that may be true, but who knows?

www.lifewithoutdiving.wordpress.com

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.   Matthew 6:34

Re: Some hard numbers....

Harmony, those are some awesomely beautiful numbers. Keep up the good work!

Teddy ~In our hearts forever~ATTITUDE is EVERYTHING
Any suggestion I offer is intended as friendly advice based solely on my own experience. Please consult your doctor for professional guidance.

Re: Some hard numbers....

Harmony....those extra hours in the chair certainly, are bringinging about some great results.  I agree with Lainy....keep it up. 
Best wishes,
Marion

THIS INFORMATION IS NOT INTENDED NOR IMPLIED TO BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF YOUR PHYSICIAN OR OTHER QUALIFIED HEALTH CARE PROVIDER

Re: Some hard numbers....

Harmony, your numbers are great.  Wish I could say the same for mine.  The last CA-19-9 test showed my cancer marker to be at 6500.  After chemo and radiation, it went down to 1575 and then the next month, it jumped to 4078 and then last week it jumped, again, and is the highest it has ever been, 6500.
The CEA went from 4.6 to 5.3.  Have you had a CA 19-9 test and what were your numbers?
I had gemzar for 6 weeks along with radiation and they did not shrink the tumors but it kept them from growing at that time.
Is this your first time for chemo?

5 (edited by Harmony Mon, 29 Mar 2010 14:15:21)

Re: Some hard numbers....

Hi Rowena:

I was diagnosed in September 09, and the Gemsar/Cisplatin combo has been the first chemo that we've tried.  The effort is geared towards clearing out the lymph nodes in prep for surgery.  While it's certainly an unusual response, my oncologist said it has happened before, so I'm just gonna go with it.

I have my tumor markers run at the beginning of each cycle, but in my case, the numbers don't mean much.  When I was diagnosed, I had a 7.5 cm tumor in my liver and regional lymph node involvement.  My CA 19-9 was 60.  It went up to 90 after my first cycle and then downhill to 42 at the beginning of February.  I took a 3 week break from chemo and my markers went up a bit during that time, and rose a bit more after my first cycle back on chemo, just like it did right when I started chemo in the fall.  My oncologist and nurse feel this is just a small wave similar to what happened in the beginning, so we're going with the belief that the chemo is still working. 

I'm gonna go out and say that CC is such a turd - everyone is different.  It's nutty to think about my CA 19-9 markers being indicative of anything in my body considering I was diagnosed with a big ol tumor and stage III CC and those markers were a whopping 60.  Cancer, she's a sly one; she likes to keep you on your toes and everyone gets treated a bit differently.  I refuse to be on anything but high alert until I know for sure this crap is over with....and then who knows, she likes to come back, so I'll have to still watch out for her in the future. 

I believe that what may work for me may not work for you, but that you may find some combo that wouldn't have worked at all for me and blows this monster out of the water.  Radiation isn't a huge thing for me because we're trying to nuke my lymph nodes as a priority, but it works for some people.  I hope you find quickly what works for you and the fighting spirit kicks in.

www.lifewithoutdiving.wordpress.com

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.   Matthew 6:34

Re: Some hard numbers....

Thanks, Harmony.  Yes, that is what the doctors say, everyone is different and will respond differently.  My doctor called tonight (8:00 p.m.) and said that she wants to see change in the CT scan before she starts chemo, again.  As long as the doctors return my calls, I don't care what time it is.  Keep doing what you are doing and keep those markers low.