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My 55 mom has Stage IIIb Lung Cancer


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My mom is a non-smoking 55 year old female. She is the most important person in my life! She was diagnosed, June 2008, and just went through her last chemo treatment yesterday. The oncologist informed us that the tumors are still there, even though they have shrunk, but will never go away. She will continue to have Avastin every 3 weeks, and cat scans every 6 weeks. He informed us that the cancer WILL come back, he just doesn't know when. Somewhere between 6 months to 2 years. This has been such a shock, because from the beginning he gave us every reason to think she was going to be fine. He said this wasn't terminal???? But now he says the cancer will never go away, they can only shrink it, and wait until it starts growing. Then put her through chemo all over again. I've watched her go from being so energetic, to sleeping until 12pm and napping all day, just to go back to bed at 9pm. I HATE CANCER, and IT IS NOT FAIR

Hurt and Confused


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So sorry you need to be here and so sorry for your moms diagnosis but this site will help you through your journey. Lots of great people and support here.

I have never heard a doc put it quite that way that it will be back within a certain amount of time. Many people reach what is called NED - no evidence of disease. There is no reasonto believe that she cannot be one of them.

I am sending you positive thoughts and good vibes that she continues to do well. Please keep posting so we can get to know you better.

Hugs - Patti B.

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Hi Jackie. You are so right. It just ain't fair...in fact it quite sucks. I too was Stage 3b at diagnosis and have had my share of triumphs and struggles this year. And when you get news like that it is just so devastating and it gives your hope a big whack in the face. But then you get over that and get on fighting. Don't listen to any doctor tell you about months or years if you don't want to hear it. There are plenty of stories here that will give you hope beyond that. And hope is what we need to do, pick ourselves up from whatever downturn occurs and go on fighting, praying and hoping.

I am glad you found this site. Please tell your mom there are survival stories out there and there is no reason that she can't be one of them. And keep us posted on how you and she are doing. Come here for all the information and support you need. It is why this site exists. Take good care


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Dear Jackie,

Have you or your mom thought of getting a second opinion? I too am a Stage IIIB AND I am a 13 year survivor. Mine has NOT come back, as of yet anyway, and who's to say it will???? Shame on her doctor for saying that. Have they done radiation treatments on her too? Sounds to me like her doctor is limited as to what he's willing to do. I would diffently get a 2nd or 3rd opinion if it were me.

Do you live here in the States or are you in another country?

If you can share with us as much info as possible we can better help you.

Does your mom have Adenocarinoma Lung Cancer? This is a safe place and you don't have to give us to much info, but where you live, what state or country is helpful.

Chemo is making your mom tired. I'm sure she is dealing with some depression as well. It's all part of this journey.

Please know we are here to help you.

Keep us in tune!

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Hi, Jackie, welcome to the group. I agree with the others that the oncologist was being much too definite about what will happen. He should have made more use of qualifiers such as probably or in most cases. I'm also a IIIb (adenocarcinoma), diagnosed just over 2 years ago. I had 4 months of Taxol/Carboplatin/Avastin, then 8 months of Avastin alone, and I've been on Tarceva for the past 11 months. I feel good and am in much better condition than I was this time in 2006. My tumors haven't totally disappeared either, though the main one is starting to look more like scar tissue than active cancer. My approach is to think of the cancer as just another chronic condition which I'll have to manage the rest of my life, just as I've been dealing with a couple of other chronic, incurable conditions for many years.

Best wishes and Aloha,


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Welcome Jackie. We all know what a rough trip this is. I had chemo and radiation before I was able to have surgery. On xray the tumor was still there before surgery. I asked after surgery about it and I was told it was just scar tissue left, none was "alive". I pray that is the case with your Mom but I agree with the above posts , get another opinion and also agree this is so devastating most of us have a time we need support and antidepressant meds. Keep us posted.

Donna G

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Welcome, Jackie! I am new here, and was diagnosed with the same stage, or close to your Mom's, with NSC Squamous Cell Carcinoma. . .I was wondering if our Mom had NSC or SC cancer, and what kind?! At any rate, don't give up hope because I do agree with the people who are considering your doctor a bit closed-minded about this! :? Did your doctor ever consider your Mom's cancer operable, or did he not even mention it?! I was operable, and I had my entire right lung removed, and I am now almost 3 years older than your Mom and surviving! I wouldn't take your doctor's opinion as written in stone, because I had an oncologist who kept telling me that I had a high risk of recurrence, and now, my new oncologist is optimistic of a possible cure, go figure! :? Keep the faith, Jackie!

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Welcome Jackie!

I am sorry you have reason to be here but glad you have joined us.

I agree with the 2nd opinion advice you've gotten. It does not sound like the doctor your mom has now is very positive or a fighter. It never hurts to have another opinion and might even open more doors and options for your Mom, too.

Please keep posting and let us know we can help further!



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  • 1 month later...

Hi Jackie,

I am also IIIB and was diagnosed only in July- I am 48 and I also never smoked and it is was completely unfair. I had surgery in which my dr removed the upper lobe of my left lung. I have not yet begun chemo as I have one more surgery to get thru as another cancer was also found in my thyroid. has surgery ever been considered? My doctor got mine out he says - I am still scared but it gave me hope as I have 5 children and 2 grandchildren that I want to be here for as well as I husband I love dearly. I joined this site for help and to give help if I can - I have lost my entire family (parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts) to cancer so I knew I was destined. I have tried to remain positive and actually pissed off. I think it has helped somewhat that and the support of my family - just keep helping your mom and question the dr. get another opinion - but believe me your love and support is what really helps.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Jacquline22, I can tell you that during my 4 chemo treatments I slept, and slept and slept. Chemo is compounding, and by my forth it was nothing to sleep 18 hours eat and then back to sleep. I still sleep alot but nothing like I had. I didn't worry too much about this as I knew my was healing. Doctor even told me let my body heal and the medince to work. The sleeping will get better


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