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rad/chemo possible at local hospital and follow by major cancer cancer?

vermontgirl's picture
vermontgirl
Posts: 66
Joined: Nov 2012

I am wondering if we choose to go with Dana Farber, can we get daily rad/chemo locally or do we need to travel each day for that? I'll ask the MD's but figured someone here would know. Thanks.

ratface's picture
ratface
Posts: 1250
Joined: Aug 2009

Ironically that's exactly how it worked out for me. I started at a small local hospital recommended by my GP. It had a small cancer center with an IMRT machine and a chemo side for infusions. If your method of radiation is identical at both facilities, then it's doable for you. The local hospital was 15 min from my front door. Not world class and a bit ruff around the edges. Met two of the most professional people I'll ever meet in my Rad/chemo doctors. Top notch wonderful caring people at the top of their game. Afterwords when seeking a neck dissection I self referred myself to one of the best neck surgeons in the country at a major top notch hospital. Ultimately you will be in long term care relationship with your ENT and can always make a trip for follow-up after treatment.

vermontgirl's picture
vermontgirl
Posts: 66
Joined: Nov 2012

ratface (seems so wrong to call you that), thanks for the reply. I am confused. Did you get treatment/primary onc care prescribed by and followed by onc at major med center and chemo/rad (prescribed by that onc) but just given at the local hospital? Does that make sense? I want to go with Dana Faber, but that's four hours away and there is a good hospital here (just doesn't have the credentials of DF)...but they would def be able to provide rad/chem.

ratface's picture
ratface
Posts: 1250
Joined: Aug 2009

The answer is no. My local hospital originated the treatment plan and implemented that plan. I then chose another hospital for the surgery. My assumption is that you want to implement the Dana Fabar plan at your local hospital which begs the question, "Is there a difference in the recommendations", or is the method, number, and type of chemo/radiation identical? I don't know but seem to remember reading posts here where it's been done.

phrannie51's picture
phrannie51
Posts: 3781
Joined: Mar 2012

My insurance would pay for flights to MD Anderson in Texas, so I thought long and hard about going there...but when I found out that we had an IMRT Rad machine here, plus a top notch Rad Doc and Ongcologist...I decided to stay here. I think I've heard of other folks going to large cancer centers, getting a plan...then bringing that plan to a center closer to home...

p

zaac23
Posts: 24
Joined: Dec 2010

I went to DHMC for surgery of tongue cancer. I was referred there by an ent from central NH. the surgeon I had was head of the dept. and very capable. DHMC is a teaching hospital and affiliated with Mass General I think. Dr. P(ent surgeon) goes to boston to keep up to date on various h+n cancers. I was satisfied with the cancer center their and now I go there every 6 month for a checkup (3 hr ride). After surgery healing they referred me to concord hospital for radiation and and various other things. DHMC works with concord and me on my treatment (concord 45 min) so I can actually have a life. DF has a good rep but I think the "little" hospitals and affiliations had to catch up to the "big" guys to survive.Winter is coming and traveling can be a bear at times. I personally think you should consider Dartmouth

D Lewis's picture
D Lewis
Posts: 1533
Joined: Jan 2010

I was diagnosed locally, and then visited my local cancer center as well as the Stanford University Cancer Center (three to four hours away in Bay Area traffic). Tumor Boards at both places reviewed my scans.

Stanford told me my treatment was not rocket science, and sent be back to the local hospital for concurrent Cisplatin chemo and radiation. For follow up, I am alternately seeing the head of the Head/Neck Surgical Oncology Department at Stanford, and my local ENT. Two years post treatment, and I see one or the other roughly every eight weeks. I love my doctors. When I was sickest, it was wonderful to be treated only ten minutes away from home.

Deb

Billie67's picture
Billie67
Posts: 834
Joined: Jul 2012

I have my surgeon at USC and it's about 45 mins from my house. He told me that chemo and rads are such standard procedures that he advised me to do treatments at my local hospital. At first I was against it because I've always had top notch care at USC but once treatment started and I started not feeling well I was happy to be only 10 mins from home. It also turns out that I received the greatest of care at both tbe chemo center and at the radiation oncology center. While they are in two different places they are each only about 10 mins from home. I'm so glad I took that route. I still see my ENT/surgeon once a month and the drive is not so bad but at the times when I was feeling my worst I'm glad I didn't have that drive. Good luck making your decision.
Billie

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