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This forum for US Veterans is rarely used so I wanted to hear from other veterans about their cancer. Veterans that are just perusing the forum may stop at this sub group first and might be encouraged by finding others on the forum.

The idea came to me when Adam Shake recently joined and mentioned he was a 15 year veteran; a combat veteran to boot. I was fortunate not to have to serve in combat. I have a huge respect for those veterans that had to experience combat.

I served a 3 year hitch in the Marine Corps from Feb 1976 to Feb 1979 and was a reservist for a couple of years after. I was in 1 of the few tank battalions (2nd Tanks) as a clerk (0151) in battalion S-3. I hate that the Marines are getting rid of all tank battalions but kinda understand why.

My wife was diagnosed with stage IIIB (limited stage) small cell lung cancer back in late January 2020. She finished her concurrent chemotherapy + radiation therapy in mid-April which was followed by hippocampal sparing prophylactic cranial irradiation (brain radiation - HS-PCI) a month and a half later. Her chemo was Cisplatin+Etoposide every 3 weeks with chest radiation starting on the 2nd cycle of chemo. Her 1st cycle of chemo began in the hospital with Carboplatin instead of Cisplatin as it was a little easier on her while in the hospital.

The treatment shrunk her tumor from approximately 6.5cm to approximately 1.5cm (over 50 percent) which is considered partial remission. She was considered stable disease based on 2 CTs in a row (July 6 and July 16). Normally you do not know much about shrinkage until 3 months after completion of chemo. We were fortunate (or unfortunate) to have CTs every so often due to all her hospital visits.

I normally post in threads or updates in the Small Cell sub group so all are welcome to take a look at those posts.

To all you Marines ... "Semper Fi" ... To all you veterans ... "Thank you for your service".

Steve

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I am a USAF Veteran.  I have NSCLC stage 4.  I completed chemotherapy during the summer of 2019, and had radiation this summer. I am well into my second year of Keytruda, and just recently had the protocol changed from every three weeks to a double dose every six weeks.  I haven't found anyone else that is doing a double dose.  Since radiation I have developed a pleural effusion that seems to be enlarging.  CT scan after radiation was over showed a wee bit of shrinkage of the tumor on my left lobe, and the small stuff on my right lung was almost imperceptible, but every day my breathing gets worse and worse.  My daughter survived five years with SCLC squamous against all odds, so I'm hoping for ten years with NSCLC...maybe more!  My lung cancer is not service related since agent Orange, and asbestos was never in my stateside work environs.  To the best of my knowledge our income precludes me from VA help, so it's a good thing that my husband is retired USAF and we have Tricare. The next thing on the horizon is a PET scan in six weeks.  The oncologist wanted to wait until all the inflammation from radiation is gone before we proceed with that.  If the breathing doesn't improve within about a week then steroids are the next step.  Mucinex seems to be helping, and I want to avoid steroids.  I didn't ask, but presume it would be prednisone.  I am on the west coast of North America, and the fires are NOT helping my breathing nor letting me gauge how well I would be progressing after radiation if the air quality was normal.  As I write this our current air quality is at 564....which is off the scale.  Not a good time to be an asthmatic with lung cancer!  LOL  Anyway, that's things in a nutshell.

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Rabbit,

Let me start by saying, Thank you for your service!  I’m not a Veteran, but couldn’t help catch your post.  Odd hours of the morning, night depending on each of our time zone.  I’m up because of chemo side effects.  Can’t sleep.  Anyways.  Wow, you’ve already been through a lot and I sure like your attitude!  You really shouldn’t be where you are right now with all the smoke.  Is there somewhere or somebody you can all go stay with for the time being? 
 

I don’t recall seeing anybody on double doses either. Any other issues besides the breathing (which is enough)?  Good luck to you and PLEASE consider trying to relocate temporarily.  
 

Babs

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Babs, Thank you for your support.  As for relocating until air quality improves...I'm in the same circumstances as most people in Washington, Oregon, and California.  ALL friends and relatives are having the same problems in these states.  There is nowhere to go in these states.  All we can do is pray for rain.  That might happen tonight!🙏🔥🔥💦💦💦💦

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Hi Rabbit, I feel your pain! I'm in Portland and our air quality has also  been in the hazardous range. I'm NED on my Stage 1 lung cancer and my lung capacity is fairly good. But I'm also impacted by the smoke--puffy eyes and this AM dark circles, scratchy throat and raspy voice.I usually have some cough, but it's increased.  I can't imagine how you would gauge what your symptoms would be like in good air. 

We're expecting some relief by the end of the week, I can hardly wait for the air quality to get down to the "merely" unhealthy range so  I can go ouside.

I hope your  breathing problems are smoke-related and will subside when the smoke does.

Bridget O

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On 9/12/2020 at 9:09 AM, MyWifeSCLC said:

This forum for US Veterans is rarely used so I wanted to hear from other veterans about their cancer. Veterans that are just perusing the forum may stop at this sub group first and might be encouraged by finding others on the forum.

The idea came to me when Adam Shake recently joined and mentioned he was a 15 year veteran; a combat veteran to boot. I was fortunate not to have to serve in combat. I have a huge respect for those veterans that had to experience combat.

I served a 3 year hitch in the Marine Corps from Feb 1976 to Feb 1979 and was a reservist for a couple of years after. I was in 1 of the few tank battalions (2nd Tanks) as a clerk (0151) in battalion S-3. I hate that the Marines are getting rid of all tank battalions but kinda understand why.

My wife was diagnosed with stage IIIB (limited stage) small cell lung cancer back in late January 2020. She finished her concurrent chemotherapy + radiation therapy in mid-April which was followed by hippocampal sparing prophylactic cranial irradiation (brain radiation - HS-PCI) a month and a half later. Her chemo was Cisplatin+Etoposide every 3 weeks with chest radiation starting on the 2nd cycle of chemo. Her 1st cycle of chemo began in the hospital with Carboplatin instead of Cisplatin as it was a little easier on her while in the hospital.

The treatment shrunk her tumor from approximately 6.5cm to approximately 1.5cm (over 50 percent) which is considered partial remission. She was considered stable disease based on 2 CTs in a row (July 6 and July 16). Normally you do not know much about shrinkage until 3 months after completion of chemo. We were fortunate (or unfortunate) to have CTs every so often due to all her hospital visits.

I normally post in threads or updates in the Small Cell sub group so all are welcome to take a look at those posts.

To all you Marines ... "Semper Fi" ... To all you veterans ... "Thank you for your service".

Steve

Hi Steve, and thank you for posting. And thank you for YOUR service.

I'm glad to see activity in the Veteran section of the forum.

A little update since I posted.... My brain mri came back and the good news is that I've got nothing going on up there. Laugh! My pet scan came back and my kidneys, liver, pancreas... is clear. This is great news. The bad news is that it's in upper lymph nodes and one lymph and one adrenal node in my pelvic area as well as wrapped around the c4 vertebrae in my neck, in addition to the three tumors in my chest. I get my chest port this week and start chemo and radiation at the end of the week. 

Other than the cancer, I'm tough as nails. We live in the Rocky Mountains at 8,000 feet and regularly hike above the tundra at 12k feet. (But not so much lately.) I founded a Veteran and First Responder nonprofit a few years ago called Flinch Forward and that's what helps keep me fighting. You see, I came to grips with my mortality in Bosnia, but what keeps me awake at night, and fighting for my life is my wife.

Thank you all for your contributions, and for keeping us all strong. And thank you Steve, for jumping in.

 

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Hi Steve, and thank you for posting. And thank you for YOUR service.

I'm glad to see activity in the Veteran section of the forum.

A little update since I posted.... My brain mri came back and the good news is that I've got nothing going on up there. Laugh! My pet scan came back and my kidneys, liver, pancreas... is clear. This is great news. The bad news is that it's in upper lymph nodes and one lymph and one adrenal node in my pelvic area as well as wrapped around the c4 vertebrae in my neck, in addition to the three tumors in my chest. I get my chest port this week and start chemo and radiation at the end of the week. 

Other than the cancer, I'm tough as nails. We live in the Rocky Mountains at 8,000 feet and regularly hike above the tundra at 12k feet. (But not so much lately.) I founded a Veteran and First Responder nonprofit a few years ago called Flinch Forward and that's what helps keep me fighting. You see, I came to grips with my mortality in Bosnia, but what keeps me awake at night, and fighting for my life is my wife.

Thank you all for your contributions, and for keeping us all strong. And thank you Steve, for jumping in.

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