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According to the forum my last log in was December 14, 2006, so it has been almsot 4 years now since I lost my Mom to LC, and now my father has been dx with the same. We just got the information yesterday,Stage 4 NSCLC. both lungs, liver and possibly shoulder mets. He will start chemo in 3 weeks and go from there.

I was my moms sole caregiver and was with her every step of the way, this road with my Dad may be a different story has he is marreid and has a caregiver, but they are both totally lost and clueless so I will do my best to help where they will let me.

I guess first I am curious as to the realistic outcome of this, I know its all terminal, but then again we are all terminal! How many survivors of stage 4 are out there? 1 year? 2 year? 3? I need to hear postive things especially so I can relate these to my Dad. I was totally surprised that he had even agreed to the chemo, so I want to encourage him but I dont want to give him any false hope either.

I look forward to getting to know everyone again, and hopefully there are still some of my old friends around. I will hopefully be able to get my Dad's wife on board as well.



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Hi Kim,

I had a similar situation like you, only it was my Mom with stage 4 with lots of mets, and she had re-married after my Dad died of cancer too. Her husband was clueless as well. But I didn't expect him to do anymore than he did, he was 70 and only married to my Mom a year when she was diagnosed.

My Mom opted to not have chemo, and instead chose to have palliative care. Her cancer had spread so far that she didn't see any point in going through the pain of chemo. She lived a full year after diagnosis, when they gave her 2 weeks. It was a good year....a year for us to really spend quality time together and to share our feelings and love for each other.

My Mom was 62.

I hope this is not a source of pain for you to read this, for I don't mean it to be. I just wanted to share that we had a wonderful last year together, and I wouldn't have had it any other way because I am also a lung cancer survivor, and my experience with chemo was horrible, and if I was not early stage, I'm not sure I'd have gone through with it.

I hope and pray that your Father sees a good outcome from his therapy. There are many stage IV people here doing well, so don't take my experience as the only one to think about. Everyone is different in how they approach this, and whatever he decides to do is the right thing for him to do. I just wanted to share my perspective, as it's the only experience I have with it.

Judy in MI

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Hi Kim,

Did not meet you the last time - but I am a two year survivor at this point. The past 4 years have seen some improvement in the handling of chemo and nausea control, but the big thing has been the two targeted therapies, erlotinib (Tarceva) and a still a clinical trial agent for ALK mutations (I can't think how to spell the drug.) Identification for the mutations required biopsy material, but at least Tarceva has shown value even without the mutation. They are both taken orally which is nice.

How young is your Dad? What level is his performance status? Smoker? Do you know the type of lung cancer? All these can affect the outcome. We've definitely got some long time survivors with Stage 4 lung cancer.

When you were last around, Dr. West was probably still offering medical information here or on Onc Talk. His current site is www.cancergrace.org A good place for up to date medical chat.

Best to you all.

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Thank you both for the welcome!

Dad is 70 and a previous smoker who quite about 10-12 yrs ago maybe longer. The Dx is NSC squamous cell, right now I cant think of the exact terminolgy but I know it is the exact kind my mom had. It is in both lungs with liver mets. He will start chemo Tuesday which I do not know the drugs (yet) and will do a MRI in 3 months.

My largest concern at the moment is his place of treatment which is the VA hospital in Dallas. If anyone knows anything about them or has been t here PLEASE let me hear from you! I just can't seem to think that this is place to be for superior care. He loves the place and dr's but I have heard such horror stories.

Another concern of mine is my dad is a daily beer drinker, I am sure also an alcoholic although I have never thought of him as such. He just like his beer. Im thinking he must have the liver of an elephant to have withstood the years of alcohol and now the cancer there.

I will post more as soon as I can learn more. I hate not knowing all the answers and my Dad is just not a good advocate for himself and does not know to even ask to right questions.

Thanks again!

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Welcome back, Kim, though I'm sorry you needed to come back.

I received very good care at the Dallas VA Medical Center. Mine was also squamous cell, but I was stage 2, so I was treated with surgery, then chemo.

You'll like the chemo nurses there. I still stop by for hugs whenever I go in for my follow up visits. Tell Terri I said hi. She has the kind of sense of humor that helps a lot in a chemo room.

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I am so sorry you have to be back here. You asked about stage IV survivors. . .my mom was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer a little over 3 1/2 years ago. She had mets to the spine at the time of diagnosis. She has done radiation (three courses), chemo (three courses) and for the last 9 months has been on Tarceva. Last summer her tumors had spread to her liver and other lung, but after three months on Tarceva those spots disappeared. So mom is a 45 month and counting survivor!


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