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Beastie Boys' Adam MCA Yauch RIP

RogerRN43
Posts: 185
Joined: Sep 2011

http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/health/beastie-boys-adam-mca-yauch-dead-cancer-salivary-gland-rare-cancer-good-prognosis-caught-early-article-1.1072765

Hip hop fans everywhere are passing the mic in honor of Adam "MCA" Yauch, the founding member of the Beastie Boys who died Friday at age 47. The rapper died following a three-year battle with cancer of the parotid, one of the salivary glands, that had spread to a nearby lymph node.

'Just bad luck': Cancer not linked to alcohol abuse or smoking or HPV according to Dr. Richard Smith, the director of the Head and Neck Cancer Program at Montefiore Einstein Center for Cancer Care.

RIP MCA

phrannie51's picture
phrannie51
Posts: 3846
Joined: Mar 2012

RIP Adam.

p

Pam M's picture
Pam M
Posts: 2194
Joined: Nov 2009

I heard about it on the radio, on the way home from work. Crap. Then they played "No Sleep Til Brooklyn". You know, it made me sad, but I had to crank it up, and roll down my window, singing (and speeding - not too fast) on the interstate. He was diagnosed the same year I was - I think I got treatment later, though.

Wild that his cancer had spread to only one lymph node, and he didn't make it. I know a lot of us here have lymph nodes affected (two for me) - again, maybe part of it is "just luck". I never knew he had cancer.

LeoS2323
Posts: 143
Joined: Mar 2012

I'm 34 so a fair bit younger but still grew up with the Beastie Boys and I loved them. He sounds like a good guy too, became a man of real peace it seems. Tragic - 47 is no age at all and I feel for his wife and his daughter terribly.

I didn't know he had cancer either. Not just cancer but a salivary gland cancer the same as me.

I think he was indeed very unfortunate because this is by all accounts a relatively easy cancer to beat on the whole; from the report I read a doctor was saying he had a high grade, very aggressive form of the disease which is even rarer and explains why they couldn't beat it.

Grade is a big factor in these things I think although they can all be beaten.

RIP Adam Yauch

jtl's picture
jtl
Posts: 422
Joined: Sep 2011

This study supports your belief that MEC has a favorable outcome providing there is no lymph node involvement which if I understood your previous posts you did not.

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/cncr.26697/abstract

John

LeoS2323
Posts: 143
Joined: Mar 2012

Hi jtl

I'm a bit of an odd case to be honest - I did have a node involved but it was removed in the belief it was a branchial cyst.

After they found MEC I have had a recent selective dissection to check if it had spread and all the other nodes were clean. So I'm free of node involvement now. My difference is there is no primary to be found; I've had PET, CT, MRI and nothing. They took a tonsil and section from my BOT with the dissection to try to find it as those are hiding places from PET because of the other activity but nothing, all clear.

Also usually PET finds cancer in the major parotid gland very easily but no sign there either. They have two theories - firstly that the original tumor might have actually been the primary as you can find salivary glands in nodes. Second my immune system may have dealt with the primary. Aside from all the surgery I've had no treatment and am just having 4 monthly scans now for 12 months.

My onc says with the nodes now sorted, the grade and the primary if it's even there being so incredibly small and me being under close observation - that my chances of being cured and it never coming back are 'incredibly high'. I think there's a bit more to my case in terms of the really technical aspects of my pathology report that make my case very favourable but I don't understand everything.

I had the original neck lump for 8 months when they thought it was a cyst and it did nothing - it was so inactive it didn't even react to the PET scan. Nor has there been any signs of a primary on any of the many scans I've had in that time either. So it's going ok so far, long may it continue that way! :-) next MRI is end August / start September and they will also do an ultrasound of my parotid gland. They don't even feel PET is necessary as its 'radiation I don't need'.

Feel very fortunate as to how it's gone so far. Although getting this at 34, I deserved a bit! :-)

All the best

Leo

tommyodavey's picture
tommyodavey
Posts: 382
Joined: Nov 2011

I too was surprised to learn what kind of cancer he had. The article stated that his cancer was very rare, so of course I assumed it was MEC. After a Google search I found that there are four types of glandular cancer with MEC being one of them. The doctors did not specify which type he had. And yes, the grade is what makes the difference.

Like Leo, I am sort of an anomaly. A low grade primary 2.4cm tumor on the base of my tongue with one visible lymph node infected. Both confirmed by PET. After my radical neck dissection I ended up with two positive nodes. 45-60 were removed along with my right parotid gland. My left was moved to avoid it getting hit with rads. My scar is from one ear to the other but it let me have saliva at 50%. The tumor was removed with clear margins so it doesn't really fit in any category.

My doctors belief is that the tumor was there for several years before it spread to my lymph nodes. I had no symptoms of it at all which I'm told is common for MEC. It was the swelling of my right lymph node that caught my attention. Had it for just under a year and showed it to four, that's right, four MD's who dismissed it as nothing to be concerned with. It took a sinus infection for me to visit an ENT and the rest is history.

Researching my type of MEC, my case does not fit into any category. It's either a primary low grade tumor or a higher grade tumor with mets. I'm right in the middle but Thank God it was graded low with clear margins. My chances of recurrence are very slim to none.

Sometimes it's nice to be the oddball.

LeoS2323
Posts: 143
Joined: Mar 2012

From what I've read Tommy - although MEC has three classifications it's really divided into two (in fact some areas only class it low or high). You've either got a lower grade which is very beatable, or a high grade which is a totally different proposition (although still beatable if caught early enough).

I think basically when the high grade gets into your nodes it's trouble as it did for this poor guy (whichever type it is he had).

The oral cancer foundation has the 5 year survival rate of low grade MEC as 95-100% which is about as good as it gets!

All the best

Leo

LeoS2323
Posts: 143
Joined: Mar 2012

Having read up on the story - Yauch had his initial diagnosis and surgery, rads in 2009.

It seems that by 2010 he knew he was in trouble - he upped and went to Tibet and got heavily into the alternatives. I think maybe at that point the doctors may have been telling him it was going to be hard to beat with conventional methods.

Perhaps his initial rads didn't hold it up too much because if the aggressive nature of his cancer.

It's certainly very sad indeed, RIP Adam.

jtl's picture
jtl
Posts: 422
Joined: Sep 2011

Personally speaking I would not worry too much about anything other than living and enjoying your life today.

LeoS2323
Posts: 143
Joined: Mar 2012

Agreement on that jtl - 100% right.

All the best

Leo

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