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confuse state

joeline12
Posts: 53
Joined: Jan 2011

hi all

i just come back after visiting the oncolgist with my dad. if some of you remember, team A doc say that its primary cancer but after today visit, this doc say its should be secondary and there some small spot in the liver. who should i believe now?? anyway dad will start chemo next week with the drug start with the letter G.. i cannot remember what is it call. its will be an hr of treatment once a week for 3 week and rest one week.. doc say its not curable but hope its can slow down its grow. any advise??

cabbott
Posts: 1046
Joined: Aug 2006

Doctors usually take some cells either in an operation or a biopsy so that they know what kind of cancer they are dealing with. They send these cells to a special doctor called a pathologist that runs tests and writes up a report. This is called the pathology report. You need a copy of this so you can find out what is the primary cancer. The report will be written in medical terms that are hard to understand, but you can ask what the terms mean at this board. There are no doctors here, but it is amzing what the folks know and will share. Cancer is a term that covers a lot of different disease under it. Each has a different treatment, so doctors have to read the report to find out what they are dealing with. Cancers of the lung can travel to the liver. Cancers of the liver can travel to the lung. Where it starts determines the primary cancer and the treatment that will be most effective to control it.

Once cancer has left the primary spot and started to set up camp in another organ, it is called stage 4 cancer. It is not going to be cured by a simple operation at this time. It is still treatable. There are many folks with stage 4 cancer that do okay. Cancer is sort of like a chronic disease that you live with when you are at stage 4. You will need monitoring and on-going treatment at stage 4, but the goal is that you can continue living and enjoying life in spite of it. I try to think of it like diabetes that is another chronic disease that folks live with. Diabetes used to kill folks in just a few months or years. Now folks live with it for decades and decades. I hope cancer treatment will become so effective that we can also live so long. Better yet, maybe they could find a cure for it, but a long life would be okay in the meantime.

Patients can also get copies of the oncologist (cancer doc) treatment plan. I put all my reports and test results in a three ring binder. It makes it easier to look up stuff and share with other doctors when I see them.

I'm just guessing , but is the medicine your dad will be on Gemzar or gemcitabine?

joeline12
Posts: 53
Joined: Jan 2011

if i am not mistaken its should be gemcitabine.. anyone took this before?

cabbott
Posts: 1046
Joined: Aug 2006

Gemcitabine is gemzar. See the post someone else has on this board. It may help. You can also google the drug if you want more information.

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