May 01, 2012 - 12:06 pm
I am 3 months out from my treaments, but I have some questions. I went to the MSTI Clinic in Boise Idaho (great people, great experience) but I keep reading where many people seem to have had two things I did not have (if I am correct). So my question is what do you all think??
I was diagnosed with Stage III base of tongue primary tumor with 1 lymph node involved (my left side).
The treatments were: loading dose of Erbitux ...then I began radiatino (37 treatments of radiation) ...each week on Thursday I would have another round of Erbitux (I had a total of 6 Erbitux treatments).
My reaction to the Erbitux was quite severe. I had "acne" from the top of my head all the way down my face and back. Very painful. At one point I had to stop the Erbitux for a week.
The discussion of surgery to remove the lypmh node was never really talked about, just that if the lymph node shrinks, that is good enough. The talk of tongue surgery was spoken about but was not really an option unless radiation did not shrink the tumor.
I see so many people who had surgery to remove lymph node(s) and I see people who had chemotherapy with three neamed drugs I never had.
I was told the Erbitux is a form of chemo ...but I wonder if I understood it correctly. Does Erbitux track down and kill the cancer cells throughout the body or does Erbitux just sensitize the cancer cells for the radiation to better kill them. My concern was if I have cancer cells say in my legs, or lungs and I was only getting radiation in the neck area...how do we kill the cancer cells roaming around my body? One doctor told me Erbitux does kill cancer cells...but I could not find that in my research ...it seemed to say Erbitux just "sensitized" the cancer cells and kept them from splitting / spreading.
And so all will know, my cancer was HPV related. I began to feel bad in August 2011 and was diagnosed October 2011 and began treatments November 2011.
I go for my first PET / CT scan of my neck and entire body May 7th 2012 (just around the corner). Keep me in your prayers on that as well if I may ask.
Thank you all....I love this site and I appreaciate all comments!
Tim / McCall, Idaho