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chemo vs radiation


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Mom has stage iv nsclc - possibly squamous cells(undetermined). She is part way through her 2nd round of chemo(Gemcitabine & Cisplation). She will go for CT scan & meet with her dr in a couple weeks. She has been tired & just not feeling very well, so she is not sure if she wants more chemo if there isn't any improvement. Her dr suggested if she doesn't want more chemo, maybe they will do some radiation - the plan had been only chemo, no radiation. Does radiation have less side effects than chemo? Is it more/less effective than chemo? I plan to fly down & attend this appointment with her to make sure whatever decision she makes is a fully informed one.

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Well, I'm not qualified to answer your question about which may be more effective ~ chemo or rad. But I can attest to the fact that chemo CAN really fatigue a person. Not sure rad does that, BUT there are other ramifications of that....burning and esophagus troubles to name just two. I'd discuss the side effects mom's been having with the onc and get his/her opinion as to the fatigue issue. Then ask about the radiation. Maybe if mom can persevere through the chemo she may reap the rewards. But please understand, I am not offering any medical advice.....just some ideas here.

Hopefully the fatigue may improve as she winds up with the chemo. And then maybe some rad can help even further. And one thing I ALWAYS recommend is to get another opinion before making and drastic decisions.

Good luck.

Kasey

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