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SCLC and smoking


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Hello - my mother was diagnosed with SCLC in June 04. She is on a clinical trial and has already been through chemotherapy and radiation and is about to start Avastin. The problem is she's STILL smoking. Granted, she has cut way back but how do you get her to stop? I know that the addiction is terrible and that quitting is probably harder but faced with the option of death and never seeing my grandchildren again, I hope I would be able to lay them down. Anyway, can anyone offer suggestions on her quitting? I know it's something that she can only do but my family is here to offer support. One month prior to her diagnosis with cancer, my father had five bypasses. That made him quit cold-turkey after 50 years. My mom is "hanging" out with a bad crowd from the Oncologist office. One SCLC survivor tells her that she continued to smoke while on the same clinical trial and still smokes and that her cancer was cured. So, with that info in mind, my mom uses that as a crutch to support her smoking. It's unfair to all who love her and pray for her recovery everyday and worry relentless about her. She has to be active in her recovery too and not just participate.

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Well, speaking from my experience, your Mom has to want to stop smoking. She's not going to be able to do it just to please you or her doctors and having this one survivor telling her that smoking didn't prevent her from being cured has certainly added fuel to the fire - so to speak.

A friend once told me that fear is a great motivator - for a while but that eventually, the fear leaves you and it's very easy to go back to your old ways. She was so right because 3 months after recovering from pneumonia, I, who vowed I would never smoke again because that not being able to breathe thing wasn't fun, went back to smoking. I quit 13 months ago - about 3 months before my diagnosis. Lighting up a cigarette and inhaling has crossed my mind, especially when I'm nervous about a procedure or waiting results of scans, etc. But I would NEVER, EVER light one up again and inhale that poison into my poor, diseased lungs.

I sure hope your Mom will stop smoking - and maybe if you got her a book and made her promise to read it or some motivational tapes it may help a little. Maybe someone else will have some better advice for you.

Wishing you the best of luck,

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Hi Sharlene,

Thank you for sharing. I was reading your treatments. Has your doctor tried you on a clinical trial with Avastin Therapy? There have been 2 documented cases at my mom's oncologist where these patients had advanced SCLC, non-operable that have been cured by doing the Avastin Therapy. My mom starts it next week. You might want to ask your doctor about it. We actually called MD Anderson this week to see if there was a different treatment option and they said if it were them to stick with the Avastin because that is the thing now in curing SCLC and that they weren't even able to get it out there (don't know why). Best of luck to you in your recovery. Please keep in touch.


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