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sister DX NSSLC


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Hi All:

Had an appointment today with onc & ortho dr. and the general consensus is that the bone met being so painful the ortho doctor feels the bone is at the pont of breakage and recommends surgery to stabalize the bone. The onc. doctor said that in his experiece radiation stabalzes up to 80'% of bone met. The ortho doctor disagrees....he feels that better quality of life is obtained by surgery, of course he is prejudiced. He said my sister would lhave better results with surgery as she would not have to use "walker" or keep pressure off hip joint. It is so confusing. Would like to know if any of you have experience with bone mets that led to surgery.

She is scheduled for surgery next week. Think the only reason she agreed to that is because the ortho dr. said after surgery she would not have to restrict useage of leg; without surgery she should use walker even with radiation for several months until bone has chance to heal. I did insist on consultation with pulmon. dr. to evaluate shortness of breath as have some concern about proceeding with surgery if there are other issues regarding lung. Ortho dr. said good results with surgery unless tumor grows. Right now she's had her second week of chemo (ev. 3 weeks) and would have to postpone additional chemo until after surgery.

Any input is appreciated. Thanks for listening. Pam

Also, last blood work showed elevated levels with liver panels....I'm thinking it's about the IV Zometa that was given for bone mets 2 weeks ago @ time of chemo. I'm a firm believer that the doctors don't know everything and that as patients and caregivers it's up to us to ask questions and get answers before we move forward. Lung Cancer treatment is not a exact science and there are so many options avaialble as well as so many hurdles to overcome. I guess it's just my way of dealing with all this is to be sure that I know as much as possible of treatment options available.

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The only thing I can offer is how it was explained to us. My husband had severe shoulder pain caused by a met. It was not fractured, but there was a hole in the bone.

The reason the bones weaken and give in is because the cancer cells are stronger. The cancer doesn't actually "eat the bone" like people think. The bone just sort of gives up and the cancer wins. The radiation kills the cancer and with the cancer out of the way, the bones heal.

My husband's shoulder pain was completely eliminated and I know others here have had the same result with spine, pelvic and rib mets. I don't recall reading about any cases that did not work, but there are probably some of those, too. Maybe they can come on and talk about that, especially if they had surgery.

Maybe she could have the radiation, and then if it doesn't work, she could still have the surgery. Perhaps that would be worth exploring. Let us know what is decided and how it goes.



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