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Is the Iressa is working when the pain keeps getting worse?


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I need some help with questions about Iressa. Has anyone taken it, and continued to get worse pain, and then found out that it is holding the cancer stable? Rob is is so much pain, he has been taking the Iressa for 25 days now, and we are concerned that it may not be working. The pain just keeps getting worse all the time. We won't get another CT scan till Aug 9th. So until then he is going to feel the cancer will progress to the point that it it going to be the end of him.

He is on the 12 hour (120 mg!) of Oxycontin and lately he is having to take it anywhere from 8 to 10 hours instead of the prescribed "12". Rob has bone mets which are very painful.(spine mets being the most painful) He is also on 150 mg of Duragesic patches. How much pain meds can one person take? It is so hard to see him getting so weak. He is now using a walker sometimes because the drugs are making him so woozy that he cannot balance himself well. We saw the Dr yesterday and of course he felt pretty good because he had just taken his Oxycontin about an hour and a half before seeing her. Then he said when she asked him about the level of pain, "I feel pretty good now". Well yeah, he felt good then, but now he is in tears because when just getting up to go the the bathroom, it starts hurting and then he gets all worried that the cancer is getting worse. The Dr also asked him about getting on some anti-depressants, he said, "No I am ok". So after we got out to the car, I told him that maybe he should consider taking them because he gets so emotional sometimes. I guess if I had that pain, I would be emotional like that too. (Not that I don't have my moments!) I think he might really need them. Has anyone been taking anti-depressants, and if so, are they helping?

I would appreciate any help at all, we are at our wits end here :cry:


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You and Rob have been in my thoughts. I am so sorry to hear that Rob is suffering like he is. I'm thinking about the fact that he told his doctor he is doing pretty good right now. At that point in time , he was feeling "pretty good", but later when he wasn't feeling so well. Perhaps, he should call and tell them that the pain is unbearable. Hopefully , there is something else that can be done for pain management. I know my husband tends to say he is better than he is at the doctor also. I always go in with him. He likes it that way because I can sometimes remember to tell the doctor things he forgets. It's also good to have two of us remembering what the doctor said. 2 heads are better than 1. :lol: I'm not familiar with Iressa or the use of antidepressents, but I would opt for something to manage the pain. God Bless you both . Know that Mike and I are praying hard for you.


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Dear Tess,

There are a million posts on this board that address Depression etc. At the top of each page, you will see words: Home, FAQ, and then there is

SEARCH. Click on Search and type in Depression, or Anti-depressants, or IRESSA, and you will get lots of info. So, having shared that with you,

I would like to share that I think you should call his Doctor's and tell them what is going on with Rob. This is nothing to second guess about. Please make that phone call ASAP. Tell them what is happening! They need to know AND they want to know. Iressa is nothing to play with, that's why they need to know! This is a powerful drug.

Good luck and God Bless.

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Hi again,

Rob is going to see the radiologist next week (for the third time) for radiation. I don't know how much more he will be able to get. They originally told us that once he was radiated in one place for (30) times, that he won't be able to get it in that spot again. So, I guess we wait and see what he tells us next week. We did talk to the Dr yesterday and she says the bone mets are causing all the pain. She thinks that when we get radiation it will take care of it. She also says that we won't know until next month after the 2 months of taking the Iressa if it is working or not. I just thought someone might know off hand. I can't find a whole lot of info in the search here about bone pain while taking Iressa.

I do know that Rob is getting weak from sitting too much in a recliner. He hurts when he moves, so he figured if he just sat, it wouldn't hurt. Well now he is retaining water in his back and feet. His legs are getting weaker. I told him that he needs to move so he won't get so weak. I think he is finally realizing that I know what I'm talking about! :roll:

Thanks for listening, and God Bless everyone here!


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Guest bbypookins


My mom's situations is very similar to Rob's. She also has mets to the spine and is in extreme pain which makes her miserable and depressed. I've tried to talk her into taking an anti-depressant, but she hates drugs and doesn't see the need. In the mean time, the rest of us have to deal with her snapping at us all the time and she yells at my father for every little thing. I agree though, we don't know what it's like to be in that kind of pain, so we have to give them some leeway. Iressa didn't work for my mom, although she was on it only for a month before they saw that the cancer was still growing. I sure hope it works for Rob.


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