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To OZ Robbie RE: Your ATE Prognosis Question


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Glad to hear that your symptoms are minimal but based on my experience, observations and discussions with tx drs. re: LC specifically and cancer generally, symptoms aren't a very reliable basis for formulating an accurate opinion about prognosis. Your prognosis has more to do with your cancer type, stage, etc. My wife has stage 4 NSCLC with mets to various locations but she has no symptoms other than low back / hip pain. I initially thought that this was highly unusual and a good sign. Her drs. agree that it's a good sign but state that it's not that unusual and it doesn't alter her prognosis. In my estimation ~ 60% of the patients that we see at my wife's onc office appear as healthy as an ox and many of them state so. My wife constantly tells me that she'd feel great if the low back / hip pain can be eliminated ( maybe with radiation ).

Good luck.

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Bill, if the lower back pain is caused by tumor, radiation might help. Also, is she on any pain medication to relieve some of this? Don


Don :

At this writing I don't know what the next move will be. My wife had updated MRIs of her brain and spine last week and updated CT scans of her chest, abdomen and pelvis this morning. Her treatment has been put on hold until her three doctors ( neurosurgeon, med onc, rad onc ) can review all of this and plan a strategy. Radiation of her pelvis is likely. Her lower L-spine, sacrum and pelvis have been devastated by tumors. Two surgeries and these areas are still under attack. On film her pelvis looks like the surface of the moon. The latest MRI radiology reports comfirm that this area is worsening. Interestingly, the area least impacted by chemo ( her brain ) continues to be the bright spot. ( She received WBR in late May ~ early June '04 ). Compared against Sept. '04 MRI results, her brain MRI showed some modest shrinkage in two of her brain tumors. Two other brain tumors are unchanged. She takes b/w 4 to 8 Vicodin ES daily for the low back / hip pain. Overall, disappointing results considering ~ 8 months of chemo, Zometa, etc.

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