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aromatase inhibitor inplace of having Chemo? I'm 61 and receptor positive doctor mentioned this as an option? any thoughts?

carol61
Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2009

Just want to have some thoughts on forgoing Chemo and taking aromatase inhibitor. No nodes involved, Masce. and 2.3Cm tumor not attached, please give me some thoughts on this approach.

Kylez's picture
Kylez
Posts: 3765
Joined: May 2009

I always thought that with a tumor that size, they always recommended chemo. Have you had the oncotype dx test?

♥Kylez♥

Eil4186's picture
Eil4186
Posts: 967
Joined: Dec 2007

Yeah, I agree, your tumor was not huge, but I always hear and was told that with a tumor over 1cm they usually do chemo. Mine was 1.5cm and they said absolutely chemo. Is it your age? But 61 is still young......hmmmmmm maybe a second opinion is in order.

Noel's picture
Noel
Posts: 3101
Joined: Apr 2009

I would probably go for a second opinion. I would think you would need chemo.

Noel ☺

Blessedtoday
Posts: 2
Joined: Aug 2009

My oncologist after reviewing all lab tests, CT Scan, Bone Scan, PET SCan , bone density and Oncotype DX which came back with a low score has agreed that there is no benefit to chemo for my case...my tumor was 2.5 class 1 and invasive, estrogen and progesterone receptive. Think there is something to do also with being post menopausal. She was pretty hept up on the oncotype DX test.

DianeBC's picture
DianeBC
Posts: 3888
Joined: Jun 2009

You had a 2.5 mm tumor and it was invasive and no chemo?

I am surprised blessedtoday.

I guess oncologist's really do things differently. I guess I just don't trust the oncotype dx that much, but, that is just me.

Good luck to you.

Hugs, Diane

sausageroll's picture
sausageroll
Posts: 415
Joined: Dec 2008

I am taking the aromatose inhibitor, but only after chemo,surgery and rads. I have heard that thee aromatose inhibitor is used to shrink the tumor prior to surgery.
Good luck with whatever you chose.

survivorbc09
Posts: 4378
Joined: Jun 2009

I agree with sausage, get a 2nd opinion. It seems you would need chemo.

Christmas Girl's picture
Christmas Girl
Posts: 3643
Joined: Apr 2009

We're all here to support and encourage each other.

Again, welcome.

carol61
Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2009

your one of the only positive answers I've had about this and the oncotype DX test being so important. I'm reading so much about chemo if the receptors are positive and node not involved being the least toxic way to go.
Thanks a again, I appreciate so much your letting me know. Hope your well and enjoying life!
carol

Blessedtoday
Posts: 2
Joined: Aug 2009

I am certainly not an expert in this challenge of breast cancer. I was referred to a specialty breast clinic when my mammo was bad. The surgeon who specializes only in breast treatments, and who I trusted/trust with my life determined that I had two types of problems. One an "invasive type" of cancer 2.5 in size, the other what they called DCIS a larger area but non-invasive. He said I needed a radical mastectomy because of there being so much involvement. I am 74, had no problem with a mastectomy rather than a "breast saving technique", and went for it. Immediately the day after surgery he ordered a CT Scan, a Bone Scan, had 12 lymph nodes analysed , had blood work done, and all tests showed no cancer spread, in other words, no invasion or metastasis. He then said that the next step for me was to go to an oncologist. She was concerned because the lab work on the DCIS showed a "positive" when they checked for HER2 receptor. She had further lab checks done, (a "FISH" test), sent me for a PET scan, and bone density scan and ordered the Oncotype DX. (medicare covers that test). The FISH test showed an error in the original HER2 positive, and all tests show that my cancer is solely estrogen and progesterone positive. The PET scan proved the others correct. There is no cancer in my body since the mastectomy. The Oncotype DX came back with a low score, agreeing with my oncologist, my surgeon and certainly with me that I do not need Chemotherapy, and will try the Arimidex which is supposed to lessen the chances of recurrence (already very low) by 30%. I'll give it a try, and if the side effects are not too bad will continue it for the recommended five years. These professionals I have been blessed to deal with are very current and very caring and involved. You can look up the Oncotype DX on line. Each of us has an individual situation and must be assessed that way is what they tell me. Believe me I am not trying to convince you or influence you in any way, I am telling you all this as my way to share my blessings, and I pray that you too will find confidence in your professionals.

susie09's picture
susie09
Posts: 2933
Joined: Jul 2009

Welcome and good luck to you Carol61. I agree with the others, if you are feeling unsure, get a 2nd opinion. It can't hurt. Good luck!

cabbott
Posts: 1046
Joined: Aug 2006

I would get a second opinion just so you know you are doing the right thing, but get it from the best expert you can possible get to. Someone who works in a breast clinic at a university teaching hospital as an oncologist who specializes in breast cancer would be a good candidate. You can even google them and check out their research. Cancer is an umbrella term for many many different diseases. Even within breast cancer there are many many different types. Some will only respond to chemo, others may benefit from chemo, and some may respond as well to the aromatase inhibitors without all the side effects of chemo. I have seen research beginning to consider leaving the chemo out of the equation for some women, but it seems to be in the very early stages of discussion rather than a gold standard practice. They used to base chemo decisions only on tumor size and node status, but now the genetics are also a factor. Chemo scares a lot of patients what with all the side effects, but folks here can tell you that it is doable and it does produce results. How good the results are depend on your type of cancer and how likely it is that it will respond. Please note that I have also read research that indicates that sometimes older folks are not encouraged to do chemo in the mistaken notion that they will not be able to do as well as younger folks on chemo. Usually these studies are talking about 70+, but even with the 80+ crowd chemo delivers good results without worse effects that younger women deal with. So get a second opinion from a great oncologist that knows breast cancer backward and forward. He or she will be able to tell you if you are getting good advice.

Akiss4me's picture
Akiss4me
Posts: 2192
Joined: May 2009

Welcome and glad you found us though sorry for the reason. I agree with Cabbott. You only get one chance to make this decision, so if your the least bit unsure if you are making the right one, better to get a second opinion to be sure. Be sure to keep us posted. Pammy

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