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Boston Hospitals - deciding where to go

Jane CM

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I was recently diagnosed with stage 3 lung cancer. I am putting together a medical team and feel completely overwhelmed now that the shock has worn off. I live in Boston and have several available hospitals to choose from. I realize how fortunate I am. I found an oncologist I have a great relationship with but she is connected with Beth Israel Hospital. I wonder if anyone on this forum has had treatment there?

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Hello JCM.  I grew up in Boston, Roslindale   I went to Nursing School there .  There are a lot of great Hospital there.

  When I got Lung Cancer however I had married a sailor from Minnesota and when he retired from the Navy we settled In his state.

I had Stage 3B lung cancer..  I was referred to an Onocology  Doctor at Park Nicolet Clinic.  Turned out she worked 

a couple of days a week there but she also taught Onocology at the University of Minnesota.  She was great !

Guess what    ---that was over 21 years ago !     

Hope all goes well for you.  Please keep us posted with updates.  

Donna G


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It is on the bottom of this post but again  -------------------


1st     Cisplatin and VP 16   Chemo  and daily Radiation

2nd     Right upper lobectomy

3rd      More Cisplatin and VP 16


Donna G

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Hi JCM.  I’m sorry to hear about your diagnosis.  I don’t have any direct experience with Boston Hospitals (I’m from NY) or any direct knowledge of Beth Israel.  Having a good relarionahip with your oncologist is important.  It is also helpful if you educate yourself on what treatment options are available to you.  You didn’t mention what kind of lung cancer you have but there are different kinds and different treatments for each.  You want to make sure your oncologist is familiar with all treatment options for your specific cancer; chemo, radiation, immunotherapy and less likely surgery.  A  lot of people look for Hospitals associated with the National Cancer Institute.  They tend to have access to the latest research and treatments.  The Dana Farber/Harvard Cancer Center is one in that area.  You should also get yourself a good pulmonologist in addition to the oncologist.  They specialize in the lungs and will have a different perspective on the available treatments and how they will affect your lung function long term.    

A cancer diagnosis is a complete shock but you’ve found a good place for information and support here.  There have been a ton of advancements in cancer research and treatments in the last few years.   Check back here with your questions or just to let us know how you are doing.

Go Yankees!  

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Welcome to our group!  Curt has provided excellent guidance.  I was really overwhelmed at the time I was diagnosed too and didn’t know anything about the sophisticated nature of lung cancer treatment.  I was sent to the only NCI in the State.   They discovered a driver mutation which affects 3-5% of LC called ALK Positive.  

If wanted a second opinion I would go to the University of Colorado or Dana Farber since that is where the predominant ALK researchers & clinical trials are. 

The NCCN guidelines are helpful in understanding the standard of care too.  

Gotta say I’m from Jersey so with Curt on this one- I’m a Yankees fan too.  

Keep us posted & ask questions along the way.  We’ve all been there so no need to reinvent the wheel.  You just made a whole bunch of new friends. 


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On 3/26/2019 at 12:42 PM, JCM said:

Hi Donna,

Thank you for your uplifting story! Can I ask what treatment you had for stage B, which I have, and how you were cured? 

Hi JCM,I cannot match Donnas remarkable survivor record.However I certainly want to follow in her footsteps.I am now into my 11th year of survivorship.I live in Scotland and our treatment procedures are slightly different from the USA.For example,my oncologist never mentioned Staging,just concentrated on discussing my multi-disciplinary decided treatment plan.I had neo-adjuvant chemo which consisted of 4 cycles of cisplatin and vinorelbine,this was designed to shrink the tumour in the airway leading to my right upper lung,if successful,I would be a good subject for surgery,well after just two cycles I was referred for a CT scan to discover how effective the chemo was,pleased to say my oncologist said he had never seen such good results and consecquently to follow I had my remaining two cycles.I had Surgery,a upper right lobectomy in January 2009.My surgery was deemed successful.In Scotland we do not  follow up  with CT scans,instead I had a check up every six months for 5 years,including a X-ray.On my last visit my oncologist said to me,Eric I have checked all your results, there is no evidence of cancer,in fact, I would go as far to say with confidence,you are cured now go away i dont expect to  see you ever again,we shook hands and parted as friends.Today i am fit and healthy enjoying life to the full,well actually I have crossed  climbing  Mount Everest off my bucket list,but I can enjoy an active life otherwise.My sincere wish for you and every lung cancer patient about to go through their treatment every success that Donna and I have shared.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi, JCM,

Welcome to LCSC. My name is Lauren and I'm the Digital Community Manager for LUNGevity Foundation.

I'm glad to see that you've already connected with a few of our members. This community is a great place to find information and support.

LUNGevity's Right Track website can help you find experts and centers that have extensive experience treating your specific type of lung cancer: https://lungevity.org/for-patients-caregivers/lung-cancer-101/recently-diagnosed

In addition to these forums, LUNGevity also has a robust Lung Cancer 101 website, free patient educational materials, a Survivor and Caregiver Resource Center, peer-to-peer support programs,  a toll-free Lung Cancer Helpline, survivorship conferences, and lunch and learn events. You can explore more here: https://lungevity.org/for-patients-caregivers

Please let me know if you'd like any additional information about LUNGevity's Support & Survivorship Programs.

We are here for you!

With gratitude,

Lauren Humphries
Digital Community Manager
LUNGevity Foundation

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