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My husband was diagnosed last week with SCLC which has metastasized to his pancreas, liver, peritonial cavity, and bones. We have had one round of chemotherapy using cisplatin and irinotecan within three days of the diagnosis, but are now wondering if we should have gotten a second opinion. We have tried to get an appointment with a cancer treatment center in Houston, but are not getting in quickly enough. Does anyone have any experience with this? We just don't want to make a mistake with his life!

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First off let me welcome you to this board, I am terribly sorry you had to find us. The chemo combo he is on is one of the two preferred treatments, the other being cisplatin or carboplatin and Vepiside-16. He should do well on it, but for your peace of mind you should seek a second opinion. Any thing you can do to lesson the fear this beast engenders is helpful. I am sending hugs and prayers that the treatment works and that his side effects are light.



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Pam so sorry you had to find us but welcome. I did not get a 2nd opinion but my wife and I both decided that if it ever eturned to my lungs then I would go to Johns Hopkins in Baltimore MD for a 2nd opinion. My oiginal diagnosis I was staged as Limited so it had not spread outside the lungs. I think if it had spread I might have gone for a 2nd opinion right away. Any decision you make will be the right one for you. There is no right or wrong answer to your question unfotunately. I was told that even if I got a 2nd opinion the Docs. probably would not change the treatment protocal once it has started. Betty is right about the peferred drug combos, I had Carboplatin and VP-16 last yea and now I am on the combo your husband is on. Hang in there, this is a roller coaster ride. You have found a great bunch of folks here who will give you all the support and information they can. You and your family will be in my prayers.

David C

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Dear Pam,

I too have sclc extensive to the pancreas. Your husbands treatment is typical and was done quickly after diagnosis which is a good thing. I understand how scary this can be, but as long as you have a good relationship with the oncologist on his case, you really can't do more for him than to support his treatment & ask questions when neccesary. They are the experts in the field, but only you can assess whether ther drs. are doing their best. Good luck, Claire

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CPT-11 (Irinotecan) and Cisplatin is a common chemo combo and as others have said the VP-16 (Etoposide) / Cisplatin is typically used.

The CPT-11/Cisplatin is the new combo.

The other thing to possibly consider is Clinical Trials. If a clinical trial is something you are interested in then you shouldn't start the CPT-11/Cisplatin chemo because many trials have restrictions based on previous treatment and/or have restrictions on when the last treatment was.

http://www.clinicaltrials.gov is one place to search there are a few others

Avastin and Velcade combined with chemo are in trials

There are 6 trials and I am sure more in Texas for extensive SCLC

http://www.clinicaltrials.gov/ct/search ... ve%2Ctexas

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Hi, Pam. Sorry you have to be here, but welcome.

Getting the first treatment 3 days after diagnosis speaks well of your oncologist. SCLC moves fast, so quick treatment is essential.

I don't think you "have" to have a second opinion at this point. See how the next scan goes, and how the dr. handles things in the meantime. Find out the credentials and connections your dr. has, if you haven't already. How much experience does he have with sclc? Do you like him, feel like he has a positive plan?

My mom, Bellringer, has not had a second opinion, but her onc. is in contact with other facilities and oncologists. In a way, it feels like she gets second opinions because of how her onc. works.

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