1 (edited by Lisa Ann Sat, 06 Oct 2007 13:55:29)

Topic: Gemzar, Carboplatin, and Avastin ??? Any Experience???

Hi All,

Dad's liver biopsy results are showing non-small cell carcinoma. Oncologist is saying that he has lung cancer although recent radiographs show nothing. Still uncertain about the CC diagnosis. He wants to start my 73 year old Dad on a combo of Gemzar, Carboplatin and Avastin?? Does anyone have any experience with this chemo regimen.
We are very frustrated that nobody seems to be in agreement with his diagnosis. He is showing no signs of lung cancer and lungs sound clear. No coughing, wheezing, breathing difficulty, etc. He is scheduled for a MRI of his brain and also a PetScan next week.

Dad was originally diagnosed with CC, 5 weeks ago. He is down 44lbs since then and has gotten very weak. Mom and I feel like we are on a rollercoaster ride, as everyone has a different opinion. Please help............

Lisa

Re: Gemzar, Carboplatin, and Avastin ??? Any Experience???

Lisa Ann,
You must be SO frustrated by the lack of a definitive diagnosis! I can't believe that modern technology isn't advanced enough to find what the primary cancer is in some cases. I may have mentioned that my best friend lost her dear father (56 yrs old) last year (on Father's Day, no less) to a "cancer of unknown primary origin." After my mother's experience, I've become convinced that her father had cc, and she has too. It was mainly in his liver and bones and he was given some chemo and radiation before he decided he'd had enough - he died 3 months later. It just makes a horrible situation even more difficult when you don't even KNOW what entity you're dealing with.

So, is your father thinking of doing the chemo? I thought he had refused any kind of treatment, but I may be remembering wrong. I'm not going to tell you that you should or shouldn't advise him to do chemo, as that is a very personal decision and I wouldn't want to steer you wrong. My mother tried the Gemzar/Xeloda combo and it was very debilitating for her, but I think she was too far along and she already had a compromised immune system so her case was a bit different. I know he must be tired of all the doctor visits, but have you considered a second opinion?  IN some cases you can send the medical records to another oncologist and you don't even have to see them in person, so it would spare your father the exhausting trip.

So so sorry you're not getting any answers or support! My stepfather had lung cancer and I would think it would be a very obvious diagnosis - it usually affects the lungs pretty completely before it metastizes, so I'm also skeptical of the diagnosis if he doesn't have any difficulty breathing or xrays  show no lung involvement. THen again, maybe lung cancer can manifest itself differently than it did in my stepfather's case.  And how can they know what kind of chemo to recommend if they don't know the primary origin? I'm just at a loss as to what to tell you, but I feel your frustration and impatience.

I hope someone can give you some better guidance than I have - I'm following your dad's story with caring and concern and I hope they're able to do something for him. Did they at least give him some nausea meds or pain meds?

By the way, those are lovely poems you posted and I have to ask if you wrote them yourself - if not, do you know who wrote them? They're beautiful!

Thinking of you and wishing for the best,
Joyce

Re: Gemzar, Carboplatin, and Avastin ??? Any Experience???

Hi Joyce,

I explained in more detail under my original thread. Please read.......

Lisa