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Stage 4 SCLC diagnosed - Here's my experience and plan...


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I'm a 54 year old male. 2 months ago I was diagnosed with inoporable stage 4 Small Cell Lung Cancer (SCLC). 9cm tumor, left lung, attached to lymph. After a brain and full body scan, currently no spread.


If you are reading this you must be affected by SCLC personally. There is no other reason for you to be here. I can offer very little in terms of experience. But what I have experiencd so far l'll share, plus tell you what my plans are.


I hope this helps someone...


  • The shock of being diagnosed with SCLC for me was not the cancer itself, but what it did to me as a person. When I walked out of that consulting room, everything I thought I understood about myself; my rationalle, intelligence, and understanding of the world as I knew it completely disappeared. And the effect was immediate. I became a child again. Clinical shock. I became self obsessed. I felt entitled to everything I wanted for the remainder of whatever time I had left, to the exclusion of all others and everyone else. I became a bit of a monster.


  • The first piece of good news, and for everyone who is newly diagnosed, however the initial shock affects you...THIS WILL CHANGE, AND FOR THE BETTER. And surprisingly quickly. With the help of your clinical team, loved ones and friends, your intelligence and rationalle will return, and you will figure out a plan. I promise you this. I'm just about to start my 3rd session of chemo (of 4) with 15 consecutive radio therapy sessions starting in conjunction. Side effects aren't too bad at the moment. I know they will get worse with the two treatments running together. I haven't even lost my hair yet!


  • My 'side bets'... It took me a while before I could face trawling though SCLC sites. But I'm glad I did. After much research and deliberation, and taking into consideration I don't want cancer to become everything in my life, I settled on three complimentary treatments that are easy to maintain, and it appears can have some positive results. They are: Milk Thistle, Turmeric, and I'm working on obtaining some high grade Cannabis Oil. Together with my Chemo and Radio therapy, a healthy diet, excercise, plenty of fresh water daily, and multi-vitimins, these are my way forward. But I'm ready to listen, learn, and adapt.


  • State of mind: How anyone deals with cancer psychologically is of course different for each person. For me, I'm not joining the 'cancer club.' I refuse to join face-to-face groups or communities, however helpful these groups clearly are to many people. Besides my wonderful girlfriend, I've only told a few very close people about my diagnosis. For me, telling friends and wider family imposes obligations on them, abiet unintentionally, and I want to avoid that. I also have an eye on a period after treatment when I can hopefuly get my old life back, and just be me. SCLC is something that is getting in the way of a life I enjoyed and I'd like it back, pretty much as it was, for whatever time I have left.


  • Finally, I try not to be conceited. I know almost nothing about SCLC, or what is going to happen to me in terms of the effects of long term treatment, and after. I am just doing now what I've learned I need to do today. I'm ready and willing to learn. I'm blessed with a few things. Strange, probably, for many to hear the word 'blessed' in this context, but I have no children. I have a girlfriend I love and who loves me. Great friends, family, I think a great team of specialists, and very good health outside of the obvious. Cancer has definately changed me as a person, there's no doubt about that. But I'm quite amazed at the progress I've made so far in such a very short space of time.


I feel sad reading some of these older posts. Many with positive messages from SCLC sufferers or from their loved ones, and then nothing for years. Have they all really gone?


I've promised myself I'll update this post every now and again regardless of what happens to me. And if I get lucky perhaps I can also offer some hope of longevity to others. I'll also pop back every now and again to see if there are any replies, which are all very welcome.


Thanks for reading.

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Hello , Welcome to Lungevity.  I have survived lung cancer.  The first year I was diagnosed I went to a local lung cancer

support group in St.  Paul , Minnesota.  I really needed that support group. 

There I met Janet.  She had SCLC and was going through radiation and chemo .

Fast forward from 1998--------- My old friend Janet and I are still friends, she sends me cute emails and jokes

frequently.  I hope we get to go out for lunch soon.  I pray that you get a great response to your treatment too!

Keep us posted.


Donna G


Also, I just was telling a friend about a trip to England I made with my husband in March one year.

I have Irish blood.  That year on March 17 I went to St. Patricks Church and found out St. Patrick was English.

No one had ever told me the story until I was in London.

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I was 54 when diagnosed also with late state NSCLC, but with a single large tumor in the main-stem of my right lung.  First prognosis was inoperable.  But my General Practitioner pushed the oncologist and thoracic surgeon toward aggressive treatment.  Like you, I didn't know anything about cancer when diagnosed.  I didn't even know what an oncologist was.  I also experienced clinical shock and became irrational.  A bit of the shock returns after my semi-annual scan and oncology consult.  I call it scanziety.  


You are indeed blessed to have people who care about you in your corner as you go through treatment. Family support and wife caregiving was an essential aspect of my treatment.  Let us know how your treatment progresses and if you have questions we might answer.


Stay the course.



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