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Read only if you want a hear a rant/"Salvage"


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Once at the drs, I thought I heard him use the term "salvage" for treatment. I swore I heard it, but he mumbled around when i asked. Well, I just looked it up and there is such a term. I have always known that medical people have their own "language/slang" and not all of it is pretty. However, this one is outrageous to me. It refers to second and beyond cancer treatments. What are we hunks of metal in junk yards? No wonder many Doctors, seem so distant . It's inhumane. Words DO matter. You bet they matter.


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When I hear of doctors treating human beings like they mean nothing it makes me wonder why the person chose to be a doctor. I have learned in just 21 short years that you must learn to be pushy when it comes to your health. I just finished reading an article on ways that hospitals overcharge patients using "medical language/slang" or codes that most people wouldnt understand. When will the madness end.

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Guest Phyllis

I am pretty sure that if you read Hebbie's post re annual cancer synposium in New Orleans coming up that there is a seminar on salvage patients. That will probably make you really mad as it should. Doctors can be amazingly impersonal. Maybe that is survival mode for them, but we are not statistics. It is so hard to get them to see us an individual cases and try new aggressive treatments. They rely too much on the fact that we should as a statisic only last so long no matter what they do.

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Elaine, I dont blame you for being upset. Salvage? Good grief, he must think you have no ears to hear him. I guess they have to have a term for second plus treatments but that one is degrading. Thanks for sharing that with us.


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Used to think all doctors were like God. They would have to be right??? To care so much for people they dont even know??? Well since my Dad got cancer, I got slapped in the face with reality. I absolutly agree with you. Doctors need to put themselves in our place.


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I had to hire a lawyer the first time I wanted to see my own

medical file, after reading it, I contacted all doctors and hospitals

and forced them to correct all their mistakes, went to court

to have to corrections approved by the the Law, now everybody

is only putting the truth in my dossier nothing else.

I have a very weird reputation with the medical field as I nearly

stangled a doctor that refused me a test and I wrote right away to

the hospital to complain and say what I had done and why, and the

test proved I had cancer.........(did not finish the job as I needed

the prescription for the test, but the doctor had nice marks around

his neck when he had to face me in front of the jury from the hospital)

All that happened before the test, so I think very often it is

the relation between a doctor and a patient that is wrong not only

the word LUNG CANCER. (I do not have lung cancer only breast cancer)

I have now a group of doctors that are more friends to me than

I ever expected and I am well treated.

Not much of an explanation just my own feelings.



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Hi Elaine,

I agree, words are very important!

My husband's oncologist also used the term "salvage drugs",( when talking about "Taxotere" and "Iressa".) I was apalled at the time too and wanted to tell him that my Husband wasn't a "rusty ship to be salvaged ",but a real living-and -breathing and much beloved human being. If he uses this word again, I think I will deck him!

I was also horrified when one of the nurses was trying to make an appointment for Dave at the hospital for a "Thorocentisis" and the person at the other end of the line asked if it would need a doctor to do this proceedure or an aid? The nurse replied, smiling at us all the while, "Oh I am sure we would need a doctor since this is a delicate proceedure, if you don't get the needle in the right place you could puncture the lung and he would die"!

I have asked my husband to go for second opinion but he refuses to do so. He says he is happy with what this oncologist has done so far. I have heard from many people that this oncologist is considered to be the best in the country, so at the moment we stay with him. My husband has so many other health problems as well as the cancer, I sometimes get the feeling that the oncologist feels he couldn't handle more aggressive treatment.

I wish you well with your treatment,

Prayers and good vibes coming your way.


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