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Iressa No Nos


Fay A.

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Ginny and Norme,

Let me explain something. The file that contains the paperwork on the Iressa Trial I was in is located in a box at the back of a closet that has other large heavy boxes on top of it. Today I don't have anyone here to help me reach the box that contains the file, and there is no way I can lift the boxes on top of it by myself.

Here is what I do remember about it:

You have to avoid foods, herbs, and drugs that are inhibitors or inducers of the liver enzyme CYP3A4. Some of the things I remember as being on the list are certain ulcer medications, antifungals, anticoagulants, St. John's Wort, grapefruit .

While I was in the trial I kept notes on CYP3A4 in my purse, so that anytime I received a new prescription I could contact the Pharmacy or many times the drug manufacturer to see if the new drug acted upon this particular liver enzyme. Hope this information is helpful. Will be glad when I regain the muscle strength in my arms and legs and everywhere else. I HATE having to ask others to help me move things around.

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I don't remember if muscle weakness is a side effect of Iressa. It isn't one I experienced myself. But muscle weakness IS a side effect of liver damage when there is an adverse drug interaction (which I have experienced). I would be calling the doctor TODAY if the weakness is so pronounced that she is unable to stand. And I would be taking a trip to the ER if what he had to say didn't make me feel really okay about her condition. We have to remember that her heart is also a muscle. I'm not a doctor, and I'm not practicing medicine, but I'm aggressive when it comes to evaluating what is what, and making sure I get what I need, Natalie. Some people think I'm TOO pushy, and that I "complain too much", but all I can say is I'm alive now, and others I know who "...never complained..." are not. I don't mean to be a hard case, but if you don't tell the docs what is going on they can't do anything about it. If the docs don't listen then find new docs who do.

Natalie, when my Mom (who died of Lung Cancer 12 1/2 years ago) had something occur that I wasn't comfortable with I took her to the Doctor or the ER for as long as she wanted me to do so. When she decided that she no longer wanted to deal with the disease, I fought to keep her at home when others wanted to take her to the ER. You have to do what the one who has the cancer decides is the right thing to do. And that's the really hard part of being a caregiver....respecting the wishes of the life at risk.

I"m thinking of you both and hoping things are okay.

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Natalie,

Just saw on your signature where she is scheduled for Gamma Knife surgery this Thursday. Does she have brain mets? (I'm having memory problems right now.) If she does have brain mets and has developed sudden muscle weakness I would be calling the doc right now!

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Natalie,

Listen to Fay. Sudden muscle weakness is a sign something is wrong ("sudden" being any weakness that occurs over a few days rather than a few months). There can be a lot of reasons for it. MY muscle weakness is due to the cancer itself. But whatever the reason, waiting around and not getting it checked out can lead to a lot of serious things ... none of them good.

Dean

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Fay,

I'm with you!!! I'm getting to the point where I have to ask for help to do things I used to do myself with ease. The old "male ego" is taking a beating here. :) Oh well, guess it's time to learn some humility and patience. (ME, humble!!?? ME, patient!!?? :shock: Ho boy will THAT be a change! :))

Here's hoping you get your strenght back REAL soon!!!

Dean

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