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Will Medicaid pay for Iressa?


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I asked my onc about the possibility of going on Iressa. He said he didn't think Medicaid would pay for the cost, and it is very expensive. I also had told him that it worked better for non-smokers, and women. He apparently hadn't heard that. He said he knew it worked for lung cancer patients with BAC. It seems like any time I ask about anything different than chemo, he doesn't approve/doesn't think it would help me. WHY??? If I stop responding to chemo (which I'm afraid is going to happen), what are my options - death?


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Hi Joyce,

Sorry to hear all this. Found some sites that might help you with questions on Medicaid and Iressa. Also it is important to have a good doctor/patient relationship. If you feel he/she do not meet your needs I would seek out another doctor. There are options and resources available. Be pro-active. Do not take no for an answer. It is what’s best for you that matter's first and foremost. Hang in there. Hope this helps. Peace, take care and God Bless.


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[The Power Of People Helping People / The Power Of Knowledge / The Power Of God / The Power Of Believing / The Power Of Positive Thinking / The Power Of Never Taking No For An Answer / The Power Of Laughter / United We Stand, Divided We Fall / That’s The Key]

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/quer ... h&DB=books (NCBI / BookShelf)

http://www.thehealthinsurance.com/medicaid.htm (Medicaid)

http://www.thebeehive.org/health/contests/medicaid.asp (Medicaid)

http://www.lungcancerfyi.com/lung_cancer_faq.html ((Lung Cancer - Frequently Asked Questions)

http://www.lungcanceronline.org/treatme ... osurg.html (Surgery - General Information & What to Expect)

http://www.lungcancerfyi.com/lung_cancer_glossary.html (Lung Cancer Glossary)

http://www.plwc.org/plwc/MainConstructo ... 008,00.asp (Receive the PLWC Bulletin)

http://www.usnews.com/usnews/health/hos ... p_home.htm (Directory Of American Hospitals)

http://www.lungcanceronline.org/tests/index.html (Lung Cancer Online / Test And Procedures)

http://www.vh.org/adult/patient/cancerc ... index.html (Understanding Blood Tests / A Guide for Patients with Cancer)

http://www.cancer.gov/cancerinfo/pdq/tr ... ng/patient (SCLC)

http://www.meds.com/pdq/smallcell_pat.html (Medicine OnLine / SCLG)

http://health.allrefer.com/health/prima ... -info.html (Diseases And Conditions / SCLC)

http://www.hospicefoundation.org (Hospice Foundation Of America)

http://www.hospiceweb.com (Hospice Web)

http://www.hospice-america.org/consumer.html (Hospice Association Of America)

http://www.hospicenet.org (Hospice Net)

http://www.plwc.org/plwc/MainConstructo ... 151,00.asp (PLWC Feature: Talking to Someone With Cancer)

http://www.zanesvilletimesrecorder.com/ ... 87526.html (3-year-old keeps her smile in battle with rare cancer)

http://www.rfalung.com (Radio Frequency Ablation Of Lung Cancer)

http://www.lungcancercoalition.org (Global Lung Cancer Coalition)

http://www.plwc.org/plwc/MainConstructo ... 008,00.asp (PLWC Feature: Financial Support Resources)

http://www.usnews.com/usnews/nycu/healt ... hqcanc.htm (Best Hospitals)

https://www.alcase.org/advocacy/sign_the_petition.html (Advocacy /Sign the Petition)

http://www.cancersymptoms.org (Oncology Nursing Society)

http://www.plwc.org/plwc/MainConstructo ... 008,00.asp (Questions to Ask the Doctor)

http://www.alcase.org/education/publica ... reath.html (With Every Breath A Lung Cancer Guidebook / From ALCASE / A Wealth Of Information / Free)

http://www.cancersurvivaltoolbox.org (The Cancer Survival Toolbox / Free / From NCCS)

http://www.centerwatch.com (Clinical Trails Listing Service / Center Watch)

http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&editi ... ung+cancer (Lung Cancer In The News)

http://www.thewellnesscommunity.org/pro ... /guide.asp (The Wellness Community / National Cancer Support, Education And Support / Free)

http://www.drugs.com (Drug Information Online)

http://www.alcase.org (ALCASE / Alliance For Lung Cancer Advocacy, Support, Education)

http://www.nlm.nih.gov (Unites States / National Library Of Medicine)

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/encyclopedia.html (Health Information / Medical Encyclopedia)

http://www.google.com (Great Search Engine)

http://blochcancer.org (R.A. Bloch Cancer Foundation, Inc. / Please read: A Letter to all newly diagnosed cancer patients)

http://www.cancer.org (American Cancer Society)

http://www.cancer.gov (Cancer Information Service / NCI)

http://www.cancerresearchcenter.org (Cancer Research Center)

http://www.aicr.org (American Institute for Cancer Research; Nutrition Hotline / AICR)

http://www.cancerhopenetwork.org (Cancer Hope Network)

http://www.acor.org (Association of Cancer Online Resources / Free Online Lifeline For Everyone Affected By Cancer & Related Disorders)

http://www.meds.com/lung/lunginfo.html (Lung Cancer Information Library)

http://www.lungusa.org (American Lung Association)

http://www.ama-assn.org (American Medical Association)

http://www.docguide.com/news/content.ns ... g%20Cancer (Doctor’s Guide / Lung Cancer)

http://www.healthfinder.gov/Scripts/Sea ... ?topic=506 (Healthfinder)

http://www.medicinenet.com/Lung_Cancer/article.htm (Medicine Net)

http://www.cancerindex.org/clinks2l.htm (Cancer Index / Lung Cancer Resources Directory)

http://www.nfcr.org/site/PageServer?pag ... ncers_lung (National Foundation For Cancer Research)

http://www.patientadvocate.org (Patient Advocate Foundation)

http://www.lungcanceronline.org/effects ... fects.html (Lung Cancer Online / Hematologic (Blood) Effects)

http://www.cancerlinks.org/lung.html (Lung Cancer Links)

http://www.cancer-free.com (Cancer Free Connections)

http://www.healthinsite.gov.au/topics/C ... ung_cancer (Health Insite)

http://www.lungcancerclaims.com (Lung Cancer / Lung Cancer Information Page)

http://www.cancerlifecenter.com/engine. ... =dictionar (Cancer Life Center/ Cancer Dictionary)

http://www.canceryellowpages.com/Resour ... G%20CANCER (Cancer yellow Pages)

http://icare.org (ICARE / The International Cancer Alliance)

http://www.vh.org/index.html (Virtual Hospital)

http://www.lungcanceronline.org/support/financial.html (Lung Cancer Online / Financial, Legal & Insurance Issues)

http://cancernews.healthology.com/focus ... cancernews (Cancer News)

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Oh, Joyce. I wish you could hear the inflection in my voice when I say, "Oh, Joyce." If you could hear me say it, you would know I'm saying to please don't let yourself get depressed or upset. Those feelings are normal, but you must fight them off with every ounce of energy and every tool and technique you can find. They will work against your treatments.

I sure don't have an answer for you as far as the Iressa question and why your doctor doesn't seem interested in other techniques, but please don't let it get you down.

Your post just sounded like you might be depressed about this. If I misinterpreted it, please forgive me and forget you ever read this. If I interpeted it correctly, hold your head high, take a big deep breath, smile real big, and wait for others to give you answers here that will really help you.



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Guest bean_si (Not Active)

Joyce, being an HMO patient and having very limited choices, I can somewhat understand the frustration of being a Medicaid patient. Can you get another doctor? I sure don't like his attitude. You deserve better. I am presently sending up prayers for you and wishing you the very best in finding the treatment you need.


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Do you know what cell type of NSCLC you have? It's important that you have this information, because your treatment will be determined in part by the histology.

I wanted to let you know that though most of those whose cancer is responding to Iressa and Tarceva are people who have BAC and have never smoked, there are still quite a few people who have other forms of Lung Cancer (some who have smoked) who are also responding to the Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Inhibitors. If I'm not mistaken there are quite a few of the pure Adenocarcinoma folks who have attained stability as well as significant tumor regression while taking Iressa. I hope you will seek a second opinion.

I hope that you will consider looking into Clinical Trials. Most of the time the costs of the trial are covered by the investigator and your insurance would cover the costs of "standard of care" expenses.

It is an unsettling thing to learn that your Oncologist may not be up to date on the latest trials and medications available for your type of cancer. You have to take control of your health care if you want the best that is available. And you may very well have to fight to get it. One of the things I love the most about this forum is that information can be shared with one another to help each other learn what really IS the latest in treatments, reputable source for assistance in obtaining meds, best facilities for care, no cost travel for cancer patients having to travel outside their areas for medical care and second opinions, etc.

You have valid questions, Joyce. And they deserve accurate and complete answers. Not being apprised of treatment options because Medicaid might not cover the costs is NOT a good reason to keep the information from you. There are programs that will help with the costs, but they do require that your Oncologist contacts them. If your doc isn't willing to do that kind of thing for you perhaps it's time to find a new doc.

You deserve the best of care, Joyce. We all do.

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