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Possible Surgery - New Scans 2/10

Guest JanetK

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Hi Everyone

I hope I'm not getting my hopes up too much, but when I met with my

Dr.s last week surgery was mentioned.

I was diagnosed 8/02 with Stage IIIB/IV Adeno. Right Lung and Lymph

Node Involvment. The CT Scan showed something fuzzy on my left

lung, but the Pet Scan only lit up the right lung.

I had 2 rounds of Carbo/Taxol - CT scan showed the disease stable. I

was switched to Carbo/Gemzar to see if we could do better than stable.

I just finished my 4 th cycle of the Carbo/Gemzar yesterday, and am

scheduled for a Chest CT, Bone Scan and AB Ct on the 10th of next month, for possible re-staging.

My Onc. said that in some cases Surgeons are re-thinking doing surgery on advanced NSCLC, and that due to my age (45) and otherwise good

health that I could be a candidate. This is of course assuming my

Scans are not worse.

Sorry this post is so long, but I would Love to have surgery. I know the

chance for recurrence is still there, but surgery offers a more a curative treatment .

I remember on the previous board that Peep's sister had Stage 4 and

Peeps was not a supporter of Late Stage surgery.

What do you all think ????? Has anyone out there had Late Stage Surgery???

As always, Thankyou all for being here and

God Bless Us All.


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Having had 2 surgeroes (thorocotomies), and if I was given a report that I had it again (another tumor), if surgery was an option, I would probably go for it. (if someone had said that right after my last surgery, I probably would have given them a swift kick in the ribs :lol::lol: )

I am not going to fool you, be prepared for the worst pain you have ever endured in your life. If an epidural is offered, take it. If it isn't offered, ask for it. The epidural will certainly give you a level of comfort for a few days following your surgery. If they put you on the pain pump, which they probably will do, push the button as often as is necessary. Do not be concerned about getting addicted to pain killers. You will crave pain killers as long as there is pain and you use them in the prescribed manner. They will want you to keep pillows against your ribs as a splint (hint: read my teddy bear story). Having your ribs spread is no picnic, fortunately you will be under general anesthesia. When my ribs bother me, which they will for some time following the surgery, I look at it as being a reminder as to what could have been.

With the surgery, there is risk, of course. Look beyond those risks to the overall benefit that will be served. If the tumor is excisable, with or without taking a lobe or the whole lung, remember, most surgeries are going to be complete, meaning they are usually able to get all the cancer.

Being cancer free is a very good feeling, but... we're still at risk for recurrence. Your oncology appointments will continue and should continue and you will have follow-up appointments with your surgeon as well.

We're with you no matter what. You have a great group of people here.

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Hi Janet,

Well, I had my left lung removed along with two cancerous lymph nodes and a few extra to be on the safe side as well. I was a stage IIIA when I went into surgery but was restaged a IIIB when I came out. Well, to make a VERY long story short, I came through my surgery in flying colors. I had some pain, (yes) but nothing I couldn't live with thanks to the pain meds. :):) I had 2 ribs removed as well. I never really had any rib pain. I was up and walking around the second day after surgery, pushing a wheelchair and my oxygen down the hall. I was on oxygen for 3 or 4 weeks after my surgery, then I went off of it. I ate the next day after surgery as well, I remember I had chicken. I WAS HUNGRY!! I know this is NOT an easy surgery by no means, and if you have to have it done, I can only HOPE you have as good of luck with it as I did. My doctors all said I was "remarkable"! Bless there hearts! But I do know of many others that have had the SAME type of surgery and they too didn't have a lot of problems like myself. I have a man in my Support Group that was 75 when they removed his left lung (2 years ago). Well, after he left the hospital (6 days after surgery) he went home (BY HIMSELF)! He had no one to help him. But, he is doing very well today too! Oh and just so you know, I was in the hospital for a total of 5 days and home I went.

Well, I hope your Onc is right when he says they are changing there ways and thoughts about doing surgery on late stage patients. I guess I feel I am a good example of that!!

Holler if you need anything. Take care and I'll keep you in my thoughts and prayers that all this works out for you!

Warm and Gentle Hugs,

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Don't know if my husband was late stage or not. Don't know when NSCLC goes from early to late stage.

Dx 9/21/02. Had seizure, CAT showed brain lesion, chest CT showed 1 nodule in upper right lobe. 10/4 had craniotomy to remove tumor, then 14 whole brain radiations. 12/3 had lobectomy to remove upper right lobe. We were told that my husband's cancer was unique, small lung tumor and 3 or less brain lesions and since he was young (60) and otherwise healthy he was a candidate for surgery. Right now CT of chest and abdomen and MRI of brain look clean. Cross fingers, pray hard.

He is having other problems. Had heart Afib after surgery. Put on so many drugs, dilantin for seizures, amiodarone for heart afib, etc, etc, etc.

Cardio took him off amiodarone yesterday, and primary reduced his dilantin from 600mg to 500mg. We are hoping that this drug reduction will help with vertigo, nausea, tremors etc etc.

He would do this treatment all over again even knowing what he had to go through. The doctors at both U of Penn Hospital and Fox Chase Cancer Center told him that this agressive treatment offered a chance for cure. We liked the word cure.

Go for it and bless you.


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hi janet, i understand about wanting the surgery. and of course, if you are doing well strength wise, it might be a good option....but radiofrequency abltion is also a solution with great results, and no risk of stray cancer cells going anywhere. just something you might want to look into. alot less invasive and taxing with good results. let us know what happens.

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Please keep me posted on your situation. Yours is very similar to my mother's. She's staged at 3B. At first docs said no surgery and then after some tumor shrinkage with Carbo/Gemzar, surgery was mentioned.

She's finished her last round of chemo and goes in for chest/abdomen and brain scans on the 10th. I'll keep you in my prayers that day, too. :lol:

I would love for my mother to be able to have surgery. You are right in that. It seems that chances are just better if docs can get in and just take it out.

Best to you,


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