CSN Login
Members Online: 14

Avastin and Alimta

Ellen Arlington
Posts: 4
Joined: Jun 2009

I received my 3rd treatment with this combo today. I thought I'd be on alimta every three weeks for a long while (or til it stopped working). I thought it was the biologic therapy--but in going over my notes, I see that avastin is the b. therapy and that alimta is the chemo. Am I confused? Is it alimta that is given continuously after the combo is finished? Or the avastin? Apparently there was big excitement about one of these at the recent ASCO meetings. I just don't know which one.

ARobben's picture
ARobben
Posts: 46
Joined: Apr 2009

Alimta is the chemo drug. Avastin is a drug that essentially cuts off the blood supply to the tumor and prevents it from growing new blood vessels to supply itself. Avastin is often given by itself even after chemotherapy treatment is complete. I went through six rounds of chemo with Cisplatin/Alimta/Avastin and then continued on Avastin for a little while after that. I've now stopped the Avastin because I've started radiation, and Avastin can cause a bleeding risk with radiation.

Hope this helps!

Ellen Arlington
Posts: 4
Joined: Jun 2009

Thanks, I thought avastin was the blood supply drug--but -- and this may be chemobrain--I thought the doc said that the latest out of the onc meetings was to continue Alimta alone. Have you heard of this? Good luck with the radiation.

ARobben's picture
ARobben
Posts: 46
Joined: Apr 2009

I've never heard of continuing Alimta by itself. It is very common to continue Avastin by itself. The names are very similar. Perhaps the doctor said the wrong one accidentally, or maybe you just heard the wrong way. Anyway, if you ever have questions about your treatment, it never hurts to call your doctor and get some clarification! That's what they're there for!

HOPE2009
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 2009

I'm new to this site, but not new to the diagnosis of cancer as I am a 39 year survivor of cervical cancer, but on Veteran's Day last Nov. 11, 2008 I called 911 suspecting my now 74 year old husband was having a stroke. The diagnosis was Stage IV lung cancer with metastasis to the brain and spine.

He is retired Air Force and served two years in Vietnam and following the two tours flew back in to areas of heavy use of Agent Orange for four more years prior to his retirement.

I am curious if other vets are also experiencing squamous cell lung cancer related to Agent Orange? Though I am a retired Congressional case worker who worked for years for a Member of Congress, assisting other vets in the 1980s to early 1990s to obtain benefits, the back log now with the Department of Veterans Affairs is estimated to be near 1 million cases requesting benefits and/or on appeal.

I noted other vets in discussions on this blog and wondered also about the severe difficulties others are experiencing with what should amount to "fully developed" cases
with conditions considered "presumptive" for Agent Orange exposure. Along with the other
difficulties of the case, I am also curious why the VA would send my spouse, labeled as
"terminal," but the oncologist noting that is hardly written in stone, for a "lung function test?

Maybe it is just my personal frustration with dealing with the VA on a far different level now than I previously was able to, but am curious about others, both with the issue of NSC
squamous cancer of the lung and the difficulties others might be experiencing with the
Department of Veterans Affairs.

Any discussion or answers to perhaps too many questions is appreciated.

Subscribe with RSS
About Cancer Society

The content on this site is for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition. Use of this online service is subject to the disclaimer and the terms and conditions.

Copyright 2000-2014 © Cancer Survivors Network