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Hi all, this is what we now know. When I was first diagnosed I was told the I was a IIIa and that I could have chemo followed by surgery, they were going for cure. It's funny that at the time that sounded so scary, now I'm wishing for that option. I had a VATS last week and while I was still coming out of general anesthesia the Dr. told me that they found a lot of small nodules in the lining of my lung, and that I had been stagd at IV. I visited the Dr. just yesterday to go over all of it again, armed with a notetaker and cassette recorder to make sure we got it all right. I'm told that I have adenocarcinoma, and that I'm "technically" a IIIb, but because of the extent of the cancer into my lining I'm a IV, there's no difference. They have offered me traditional chemo w/o radiation, However they tell me that Iressa or Tarceva are really the only choice for me. I have been offered clinical trials involving these drugs, depending on whether or not I have a particular mutation. The Iressa would be Iressa alone, and the Tarceva study involves being randomly put into one of two groups, Tarceva alone, or Tarceva w/chemo. If anyone has any thoughts on this I would love to hear from you.

Thanks to my wonderful Aunt I am heading to the NIH for another opinion either this week or next. My treatment will not start for at least another week so nothing will be held up. I would love to be offered another treatment option. At the very least I want a recommendation as to which one to pick.

Our children are 11, 8 and 4. We are trying to keep them informed w/o scaring them, but they know this is serious. This is school vacation week and instead of doing lots of fun stuff,mommy is at the doctors all the time and their grandparents practically live here. I have contacted a counsling group that deals w/ families in these circumstances, I think this should help a lot. My husband is the most wonderful man, i don't know how he's keeping it all together for us.

We will get through this. I have an amazing support system of friends, family and our kid's school. Now that I've found you all i feel inspired.

I am looking for some inspirational reading material, i noticed the recommendation of Bernie Siegel's books. I read love, medicine and miracles and it was wonderful. Does anyone have any other suggestions?

Thank you all!


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I got many of Bernie Siegel's books on tapes and listened to them on the way to doctor's appointments. To this day I find his voice very calming. He has a ton of books, so don't stop at Love, Medicine and Miracles. I read that too in 1993, and it was at that moment of reading that I realized I was going to be all right.

He has a website


and many of his seminars are in Connecticut. I have posted on his message boards and he has answered me!

I also found a lot of inspiration in Tuesdays with Morrie Not everyone feels the same, but I actually read it with cancer #2 and #3.

I also HIGHLY recommend People Magazine for Doctor's appointments!!!! Talk about no brainers! :wink:


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Hi Tracy!

I'm so sorry to hear of your dx. I, like many others here, feel like I already know you through your dear Aunt Kasey. I just want you to know you are in my prayers. You have such a calm, and intelligent attitude about all of this...I KNOW you are going to BEAT IT!!! And you have such a fine example of courage, and determination to follow.

My Mom sent me a copy of a book by Richard Bloch (of H & R Bloch) who lived 10 years after a stage 4 LC dx, and created a foundation with his wife to help give HOPE to others. The books are free of charge, and can be obtained through the website: http://www.blochcancer.org or by calling: 1-800-433-0464.

I also liked Gail's idea...People Magazine... :lol::lol::lol: The docs office is the ONLY place to read "People"...

I think the counseling idea is a great one... I am hoping to find a similar service through Mayo. I am so glad you have such a wonderful hubby to support you through this. And I know that your kids will help give you the determination to kick some LC booty!!!

Tracy, I am sending all of my BEST wishes, prayers a-plenty, and most positive vibes for COMPLETE healing! And some hugs for ((((you & Kasey)))) too!

Yours in HOPE!


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Now, I haven't personally read this one yet, but there is a book in the Chicken Soup for....series called "Chicken Soup for the Surviving Soul: 101 Healing Stories About Those Who Have Survived Cancer." Came out around 1996 and got outstanding ratings (also was on NY times best seller list)

If you have read any of these Chicken Soup books, you'll know they are really, really good -- often filled with humourous stories and most certainly inspirational.

Anyone out there read this one????


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Hi Tracy, I am so sorry you and family are going through this. I found lots of strength in prayer and the Bible, Psalm 91 in particular. All of Psalm 91 is great, but this is my favorite part. Its gotten me through some tough times.

4 He will cover you with his feathers,

and under his wings you will find refuge;

his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

I hope Psalms 91 will help you too. Barb

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Hi Tracy,

I just wanted to welcome you to the site. We have heard about your diganosis from your Aunt Kasey as you were going through testing.

You have been in my prayers ever since, and you will continue to be.

I am so very sorry you have to go through this. Cancer sucks so damn much it makes me so angry. It just isn't fair that someone so young and with a wonderful family and children should get this. Not that it is fair for anyone to get this, but it seems especially unfair to have this sort of fear and peril in your life when you are so very young.

I think cancer should only happen to murderers and child molestors. :lol:

Please know that this is a safe place to come for anything and everything. You can come here to post good news and laugh and joke around and forget all the woes of the world, or you can come here to scream, cry, vent, get angry and rage against the disease. You can also find lots of good info and answers here. It is all normal, natural and understood. We've all been there and are going through this with you.

Sending you lots of love, warm thoughts and prayers.


PS. If you ever want to talk, PM me and I will send you my phone numbers. My husband is also in his 30s and stage IV.

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Tracy, has anyone mentioned Avastin? My friend, male, also non-smoker 36 y/o was diagnosed in August of '05 with NSCLC IIIB. Nothing worked until he tried the Gemzar/Avastin combo. He is now totally stable and has been since July, and is living a totally full, active, athletic life. His next scan is in July. Right now, everything looks shrunk/dormant!!! He did have radiation, but was not a candidate for surgery. My thoughts are with you. You have a wonderful, caring and protective auntie. She will keep you strong through this. Welcome. :)

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My post got lost, but I'll welcome you again. I was heartbroken to hear your dx from your aunt Kasey. I want to wish you so much success in your treatment. I am a stage IV survivor and yes, Avastin is wonderful. Ask your doctors about that one. Also, the "Chicken Soup" book is excellent. A friend gave it to me when I first got sick.

Having a supportive family is half the battle and you've won that half. Now Tracy, only l/2 to go. You can do it. We're all here to help you.


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First of all welcome to the group, I myself have recently joined and find this truly a wonderful, supportive place! I am very sorry for what you are going thru, and I can fully understand as a mom of 2 children ages 8 and 11 what you are dealing with. It is very overwhelming for us adults and have to realize that our children are overwhelmed too. I personally found that in our situation that talking with the other adults that are around our children, namely teachers, school administrators, their pediatrician, scout leaders is very helpful in keeping the lines of communication open. Also I found that the social worker at the center where my husband goes for treatment was helpful in giving us "age appropriate" books about cancer. Also our children reacted very differently to their dads' cancer, mainly because of their ages, but we try to be positive and upbeat and as honest as possible, but it is a very delicate balance.

Please know Tracy, that if you need any thing, let me know, I am also in Massachusetts and can help you with any resources that I have :)

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Welcome Tracy. I'm so sorry that you find the need to be here and sorrier still that you and your family are having to face this. You will find much love here, support, encouragment and a safe place to vent when the need arises. I wish you all the best with your treatment. (((Tracy)))


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  • 1 month later...

Hi Tracy,

Just wanted to let you know that I'm from your area. My father was diag with stage 4 non small cell lung cancer with met to the liver and now met to the brain. Tarceva had helped him tremendously for awhile.

He has also done some alternative stuff mostly juicing that I believe has had its benefits. If you want more info on this I'll be happy to tell you what we juice and such.



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Hi Traci,

Just want to add my hellos and my sympathy that you have to go through this. I know it seemes unimaginable even after the diagnosis. Coming to terms with it is difficult...but then you start fighting.

The board can sometimes give you information, and can always give you encouragement.

Hang in there.


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