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My 79 year old mum has stage 4 lung cancer

Chris Ptown's picture
Chris Ptown
Posts: 102
Joined: Oct 2011

My 79 year old mum was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer last August. The cancer did not spread and the liquids that were in the canals originally have gone. Her tumor is growing a little bit but not significantly. She was on two different chemos and then they put her on a chemo pill last month that caused a lot of outbreak and irritation in her hands and face. Her hands hurt so much that the doctor took her off it two weeks ago. He said the only option now is another chemo pill that he says would give her severe side effects. He said she would lose all her hair and the outbreaks would be more severe. He said she would be miserable. I was hoping that the last chemo pill would help but the tumor grew a little but he said it wasn't significant of a growth. I also asked my sister why if there were no fluids and the cancer hasnt spread why they cant remove the lung that has the tumor. My sister said they asked the doctor in the beginning and he said the surgery would probably kill her at her age which is 79. All this time, since she was diagnosed last August, she has never gotten a second opinon. She likes her doctor and he confers with other oncologists at Maine Medical in Portland, Maine. He also told her he confers with oncologists in Boston. I still wish she would go see someone else.

Do any of you or do any of you know someone in a similar situation? Any thoughts on the surgery and would it really kill her to have one lung removed?

Thank you.

z's picture
z
Posts: 1272
Joined: May 2009

Hi Chris, This is Lori from the anal cancer discussion board. I see your not getting any responses, so I am suggesting you visit the Inspire web site. There are many stage IV lung cancer survivors there, and lots of information. I visit the site as I had a primary lung cancer and a lower right lobe removed via vats on 9-23-10. The reason it was caught was because I was having follow up scans for the anal cancer in which I completed tx on 6-30-09.
Lori

Chris Ptown's picture
Chris Ptown
Posts: 102
Joined: Oct 2011

So glad to see a friendly face again on here! I just joined Inspire and hope maybe some of the folks there can give me some advice. It's like my mum won't get a second opinion. She likes her doctor and says that he confers with many other doctors even some in Boston. So I can't force her I guess. Hoping someone on Inspire can speak with me. Thanks for the suggestion I really appreciate it. I am glad you are doing well! You were always so supportive of me last year when I was going through my anal cancer. Thank you again! Hugs!

dennycee
Posts: 686
Joined: Mar 2011

Hi Chris,
I am so sorry that your family is going through this. Fluid buildups when like the one you described are almost always caused by cancer cells. I am going to try to borrow someone else's analogy. Think of cancer like a dandelion. When the cancer is at stage one, the flower is in one piece and all the petals can be cut off as one whole. At stage 4, the dandelion petals have turned fluffy and white, when you cut the flower off you don't know if some of them have blown off already or will blow off when you cut it. If there is one cell floating unchecked it is enough to start the cancer somewhere else.

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