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My 81 Year Old Mother Just Diagnosed with Stage 3A Non Small Cell Lung Cancer


Kelly Bayne

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Hello my name is Kelly Bayne, and my mother who is 81 years old was diagnosed with stage 3A non small cell lung cancer on July 12, 2018.  She is awaiting for her appointments to begin radiation in conjunction with chemotherapy.  She has a mass on her right lung and has two lymph nodes near her right lung which have tested positive for lung cancer.  She will have 7 weeks of radiation along with chemo, and if all goes well she will then start immunology treatment.  My mother has not smoked in over 40 years, and the lung cancer diagnosis was shocking for her and us.  As a member of this forum I hope to gain as much knowledge and support as I can.  I also want to offer whatever knowledge I gain and support to others who are fighting this battle.

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Hi, Kelly, and welcome.  Sorry about your mom's diagnosis, but it sounds like the doctors have a good treatment plan.  Several people here are doing very well with immunotherapy. I don't have personal experience with radiation or drug therapy--I was lucky enough to have very early stage cancer that was treated with only surgery.  Just wanted to welcome you here--this is a great group of folks and it's a great place to get both knowledge and support.

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Thank you for your quick and thoughtful response.  My mother is a young 81 and has taken good care of herself by exercising and eating healthy.  We are optimistic, but worried about the radiation and chemo side effects.  Thank you again...

 

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There are plenty of veterans of chemo and radiation here who can give you (and her) some good tips.  Her being strong and otherwise healthy will definitely give her an advantage. I don't think her doctors would be proposing this course of treatment if they didn't think she is up to it.  Also, if side effects from one type of chemo are too severe (and everyone reacts differently--some people have relatively mild side effects), there are other treatments to try.  

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Hi

If the doctors did not think your mother was fit to receive treatment I doubt if they would commence so there is a good sign right there. In the first infusion they are very careful and the nurse is right there  for any adverse effects .The later side effects are completely different in each individual and for me were very manageable of the course of eight as was the six weeks of radiation and I am in my seventies and will continue ongoing treatment in the coming weeks. And the first treatments were a success on reducing my tumour and also my lymph nodes.

Bob

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Hi Kelly,

Welcome to these forums. My lung cancer was stage 1a and required only surgery. However,  before the LC, I had a very aggressive stage 3 gynecologic cancer for which I had concurrent chemo and radiation. I had some side effects  and the whole thing wasn't something i would do for entertainment, but it did contribute to saving my life, so I would do it over again if need be. Now I'm 7 years from the end of treatment on that cancer and almost 2 years on the lung cancer and have no evidence of disease on either one. 

This site is a good place to find information, support and hope. Let us know what questions you have and how we can support you. Best wishes to your mother and to you.

Bridget O

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Hi, Kelly,

Welcome to LCSC. This community is a great place to find information, support, and hope. I'm glad to see that you've already connected with some of our members. Please feel free to ask questions, share updates, explore the discussion boards, and join in on any conversations that resonate with you. I am happy to provide you with additional information about LUNGevity's support and education resources and programs as well. We're here for you!

With gratitude,

Lauren
--
Digital Community Manager
LUNGevity Foundation

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Hi Kelly! 

I was diagnosed with stage 3B back in March. Almost the same as your mom- mass and 2 nodes- but on my left side. Apparently they changed it to 3A at some point following my biopsy but regardless...I was scheduled to do pretty much the same treatments that your mom has been scheduled for. I was supposed to do a Taxol/Carbo chemo along with the radiation for 6 weeks, followed by immunotherapy. My treatment plan got changed at the last minute though due to the surgeon requesting to hold radiation initially- so I ended up doing 6 weeks of full dose chemo instead, followed by 6 weeks radiation. 

So I didn't end up doing the same treatment plan as your mom- but many in the infusion center with me were. I know that they usually lower the dosage of chemo when given along with radiation, so hopefully that will be much easier on your mom! Have they told you yet which chemo and/or immunotherapy drugs she'll be getting? 

Sounds like your mom has kept pretty healthy. Hope she sails right through this stuff!

 

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