FRIDAY, my husband and I met with our new onocologist for the second time to discuss proposed plan. My husband had 3 cancer recurrences in the "surgical bed" area detected on PET scan 08/12/11.
Between our surgeon and this new onocologist, we have been informed that SURGERY is not an option because of location of cancers; scar tissue, and because the same area was radiated 25 tx previously. It would be most, most dificult to get the margins clear and to do the surgery.
We asked if more radiation txs could be done (had 25 txs last year). We were told it was not an option as it could be toxic.
We discussed another radiation, "radioactive ablation," which uses a needle proble quided by a CT monitor to heat/radiate areas. Not possible due to location of cancers - surrounded by bowels and cannot go through back due to spine, etc.
So Friday, 08/19/11, chemo was begun using GEMZAR/CISPLATIN. Between doc/lab/and chemo txs, etc., we were at the doc's office almost all day. No side affects from this initial treatment so far, praise be to God.
Last year's chemo regimen was GEMZAR/5FU. The 5FU was not tolerated due to blisters in mouth/throat and was discontinued after 3 weeks. GEMZAR was given a total of 5 months. Side affects throughout all were fatigue, several headaches, chills, fever-in which we controlled, and severe abdominal pains.
CHEMO TREATMENT PLAN NOW, beginning 08/19/11 will be:
Day 1 - chemo with GEMZAR/CISPLATIN
Day 8 - chemo with GEMZAR/CISPLATIN
Then he has a week off.
This whole cycle will then be repeated for 6 months duration, with a CT scan 4 months into chemo.
No mention of DEXAMETHASONE being given. We did get ZOFRAN and COMPRAZINE RXs but have not needed them.
I'm now going to research NEULASTA and AVASTIN, after reading here that they are used when counts are low. Some of husband's counts now are just below normal range. So I've been especially concerned.
We really like our new doc, and she has an aggressive, energetic manner in presenting to us that she will to do all that she can to help us battle this cancer.
Thanks to you and all other posts! I plan repeat postings as we continue forward. "A little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing," so I am in learning mode more than ever to help my husband.