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Tom Galli

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Tom Galli last won the day on November 28

Tom Galli had the most liked content!

About Tom Galli

  • Birthday 09/23/1950

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    Lung cancer patient/survivor
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    Author of Scanziety, an ebook published on Amazon. Scanziety: A Retrospection of a Lung Cancer Survivor https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JMTX0LU/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_g3pbDbH0T8E64

    Treatment history https://sites.google.com/a/redtoenail.org/chronicles-demo/home/tom-galli

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  1. Today I joined a discussion about how to ensure having life sustaining pills on hand to get one through a travel period. There are ways for getting a supplemental prescription in advance of a trip, but these involve a discussion with a physician, perhaps a pharmacy, and most certainly an insurance carrier who pays for the medicine. Might there be a simple way? Why yes, indeed! Here is how to build your own private stash of pill-form chemotherapy and other sustaining medication. Most pharmacies and insurance companies will process a refill within 5 days of the date of zero balance on your prescriptions. Order your refills as early as your pharmacy and insurance carrier allows. When you receive your new monthly supply, start taking drugs from the new bottle. Retain the old bottle (now called your "stash" bottle) which might contain 4 to 5 unused pills. Feed the stash bottle with unused pills after each renewal. In 6 refills, you'll have a months worth of stashed medication. This becomes your travel supply. More important, it becomes your disaster supply to ensure you don't run out while recovering from a tornado, hurricane, power failure and the like. While we are on the topic of pills, my GP and med onc decided that a severe chest illness could be a very dangerous medical situation for me while traveling in an exotic local (try obtaining antibiotic medication in Egypt). So, my GP wrote a prescription for a month's worth of Levaquin to take on trips. My instructions were to start taking this medication when symptoms presented while searching for a competent doctor. As lung cancer survivors, we all hold a higher risk of bacterial lung infections morphing into something threatening, so an antibiotic stash is likely a good idea. Off course, all you-all do have a list of your prescription medication and lung cancer treatments on your Medical ID screen of your cell phone, right! OBTW--If you choose treatment for lung cancer, then you are choosing to live. Trips to somewhere enhance the qualify of one's life. Go somewhere; do something! Stay the course. Tom
  2. Tom Galli

    I/Os for PDL1/-1

    KOP, To restate, your question is if one immunotherapy checkpoint inhibitory did not work on an individual, then all won't work on that individual. Is that correct? First, understand I am not a physician, but I believe the answer to your question is no. Here is information on immunotherapy and in particular checkpoint inhibitors. Stay the course. Tom
  3. Karen, Welcome here. Your first line treatment was exactly like mine except I had taxol opposed to paclitaxol. And, my first post treatment scan was exactly as you reported: my large tumor was indeed blown to smithereens. Your consolidation therapy--Duva--can be troublesome. Unfortunately pneumonitis is commonly reported and the extent of the condition varies from person to person. We have a pretty extensive body of knowledge on Duva here, if you want to read about others and their experience. I do hope your forthcoming scan shows no nodule growth or any other problem for that matter. Stay the course. Tom
  4. Tom Galli

    I/Os for PDL1/-1

    KOP, What do you mean with your I/O reference? Stay the course. Tom
  5. Kli, I’m not sure I can answer how stent location affects things. I would hazard a guess that it would need to be positioned so it doesn’t cause a persistent gag reflex. I bet an Ear, Nose and Throat doc is or should be consulting on the procedure. My stent stayed in for about 4 months. My surgeon told me that was about the limit of a trachea stent because tissue started to grow into the stent weave. I sure fell better after its removal. Your mom’s doctor will have a better answer. Stay the course. Tom
  6. Kli, Yes, only the trachea. I know folks with esophageal stents and some report swallowing difficulty; some do not. I believe irritation and swallowing problems are different for everyone. I think an important variable is the location of the stent. Hopefully, your stent will be a temporary condition and healing will allow it to be removed quickly. Stay the course. Tom
  7. Jack, Good show posting this paper. It might be very helpful going forward. Stay the course. Tom
  8. Lizzy, Walter Reed—The Army Medical Center? In my active duty tenure, I spent more time than I care to remember at WRAMC. Since then, I think they closed the Army hospital in DC and rebadged the Navy hospital in Bethesda as Walter Reed. Either way, you are in good hands Stay the course. Tom
  9. Kli, Welcome here. Pardon my brevity. I’m responding on a cell phone and my thumbs do not have the dexterity of youth! A tracheoesophageal fistula is nasty. The esophagus tissue is too flimsy to allow a surgical repair. And I’ve had 4 stent insertions in my trachea to bolster a bronchus stump suture repair. My actual problem was sutures holding on the stump. The stent was used to bolster the area to allow sutures to heal and hold. The stents caused a myriad of problems for me. First tracheal irritation caused intense coughing fits and this resulted in stent movement. The remedy was to install a longer stent and that held firm but again the irritation caused intense coughing compounded by lots of mucus production. Eventually my thoracic surgeon thought the stents did their job and were removed. It is an unusual condition and in my day they didn’t make trachea stents so esophagus stents were used. Stents are made using a unusual metallic alloy made of nickel and titanium. This is woven into a fine mesh. The alloy has temperature sensitive properties. When cold, it shrinks to allow emplacement using, in my case, a bronchoscopy. Then when released, the heat-sensitive alloy properties allows the stent to expand and create the bolster that allows tissue healing. I’ve known folks who’ve had both esophagus and trachea stents. Several in this Forum May chime in with their experience. Expect discomfort, perhaps coughing and difficulty swallowing. And, no one can predict how long the stent needs to remain in place so frequent scans or endoscopic inspections. But while inconvenient and uncomfortable, they worked for me and others. Not pushing my book but it contains a lot of detail about my experience with stents that may be helpful for your mom. It is called Scanziety and is on the Amazon Kindle store. It is not long and inexpensive typical of writing attempted by civil engineers. More questions? Ask away. Stay the course. Tom
  10. Good news RJN. I’d say Keytruda is doing the job. Stay the course. Tom
  11. Lisa, I echo Lou's words of welcome. But, and unfortunately, nothing I can say will relieve you of the anxious waiting that attends this disease. Regardless of the pathology report findings, you'll likely have scheduled scans perhaps quarterly for a while and waiting for results might be a burden. It certainly is for me. I was diagnosed in February 2004 and after just shy of four years of continuous treatment, reached our goal of no evidence of disease (NED). I mention this because if I can live, so can you. Monitoring after surgery is normally the domain of a medical oncologist. If you've not consulted with one yet, I'd arrange a consultation. The medical oncologist will devise a program of scans to screen for reoccurrence. Hopefully, future scans will show no evidence of disease and your life will return to normal. But be mindful, the worst things you can do is fail to attend to your screening scans because lung cancer is known for its high recurrence rate, even after curative treatment. And one key to addressing recurrences if finding them early--thus the importance of screening scans. I believe knowledge is power and therefore suggest you read into our disease. Lung Cancer 101 is a good place to start. It is compact but comprehensive and explains our disease like no other resource. After reading in, you may want to read about our experiences. Do take time to visit our blog space. There is a lot of accumulated wisdom in this body of writing. Stay the course. Tom
  12. Thomas, How about that! A no change scan is grand, good news. Happy Thanksgiving and... Stay the course. Tom
  13. Tom Galli


    Joana, Sure, to make it easy, I'll give you the time for the Pacific Time Zone. Monday: 9 AM PST. Zoom join meeting detail below. https://zoom.us/j/97948794600?pwd=TDc5UkFjY1ZORFZYRGV5Yk5UV2tYZz09 Meeting ID: 979 4879 4600 Passcode: 948515 Wednesday: 9 AM PST. Zoom join meeting detail below. https://zoom.us/j/91604427712?pwd=dzE5MkhXTU53Uy9ObzUyL05nSzhrZz09 Meeting ID: 916 0442 7712 Passcode: 444518 Friday Lunch Bunch: 10:30 AM PST. Zoom join meeting detail below. https://zoom.us/j/96596077402?pwd=R3NXdmJRTi91WmU5OStPYzBmRmovdz09 Meeting ID: 965 9607 7402 Password: 961826 Friday Happy Hour: 3:30 PM PST. Zoom join meeting detail below> https://zoom.us/j/99615581528?pwd=ZVFtTDJoRDVNNTBoQVFYMEdRazBvUT09 Meeting ID: 996 1558 1528 Passcode: 455982 Topics and additional meet-ups occur from week-to-week. Therefore it is best to email Nokole Ventrca ([email protected]) and ask to be included in her weekly email announcement of scheduled and special meetings. Stay the course. Tom
  14. Bro, Good news! I hope you have a productive oncology consultation. Stay the course. Tom
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