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lung cancer metastasized to brain

Posts: 4
Joined: Feb 2004

My husband found out he had lung cancer in Nov. 4 years ago. They took out half of his left lung and he went through the chemo and they thought they got it all. One year ago in January we found out it had returned. He went through chemo again , then radiation. Now it is spreading to his adrenad gland and his spleen and now to his brain. Can someone please tell me what to expect next with the brain cancer. What to look for.Thanks

Posts: 7
Joined: Jan 2004

My husband has non-small lung cancer too. He had one tumor on his brain which was removed but 3 months later he has two more so he is undergoing whole brain radiaton. He had no symtoms of any of the tumors and felt fine.

Posts: 4
Joined: Feb 2004

Hope your husband continues to do good Carolyn. Four years ago, in Nov my husband found out he had lung cancer. They removed half of his left lung and did the chemo and he was fine after that for 3 years. Then in Jan of last year they found out the cancer had returned. So last year they gave his radiation, then chemo until his body would not take anymore. Now the cancer has spread to his adrenal gland and his spleen and just a few weeks ago to his brain. He is getting so forgetful and so confused about things and I wish I knew what was coming next. I feel so helpless as there is nothing I can do or anyone else, not even the Dr's.

nodawgs's picture
Posts: 117
Joined: Mar 2001

I must be one lucky dude. In 2002, at age 62, I had non-small cell lung cancer metastasized to neighboring lymph nodes and the brain. They removed the brain metastasis first due to the urgency as it was seriously affecting motor and respiration, potential seizures, etc. That was immediately followed with removal of the upper lobe of my left lung and all six adjacent lymph nodes (two were cancerous). I had no radiation, no chemo, no nuttin...zero, nada. However, I can say that recuperation from cardiothoracic surgery is not fun and is extremely lengthy...in my case, about 6 months to really get over it.

Well, that was back in the summer and fall of 2002. I'm back to running/fast-walking 1.7 miles on good-weather days and hardly notice the reduced lung capacity. At first, they were doing MRIs and scans every 30 days. After about six months, they cut that back to every 3 months. Still nothing...no indication of anything recurring. I had another MRI/Scan series only two weeks ago...still nothing.

Maybe a lucky shot, I have no clue. Well, not too lucky as I also had prostate cancer at the same time. Cryoblation was too late. Contrary to its "slow-growth" nature, I had a high Gleason score (aggressive) developing metastases that quickly resulted in bone metastases in the right shoulder, neck, spine, a few lower ribs, and pelvis. An innovative pill chemo has everything in "suspension" for the time being. No side effects, nothing...I don't even feel like I have cancer or anything for that matter. Of course, this won't last forever until I have to go to a more intense chemo, likely androgen ablation. That's sometime "tomorrow" and I only live for today.

Frankly, I don't get it. In terms of lung cancer, maybe someone will hit the lucky numbers like I have...well, so far anyway.

My care is by M.D. Anderson-Houston. They are magic. I know no clinical way to explain why they are so good at what they do, but I'm here only because of those folks and their expertise.

Best of luck,


Posts: 4
Joined: Feb 2004

Good luck Perry. I hope you continue to do good.

bobmc's picture
Posts: 47
Joined: Nov 2002

Hello Scotse;

Presently going through treatment for recurrent brain mets myself. My left lung was removed on 5/2/01 and the beast showed up again on a follow up scan just before Christmas. I was complaining of back pain and did have a loss of appitite and general feeling of not being well. But, I really did not have alot of symptoms ( headaches, dizzyness etc.)
My treatment has been 20 sessions of Whole Brain Radiation which has a 50/50 shot of killing them along with preventing others from occurring. Follow-up MRI's in mid March will make that determination. If residual tumor is still there then I will be scheduled for Sterotactic Radiosurgery which is a high focal beam radiation surgery,( non - intrusive), that should take care of the remaining tumor. I was told 80% cure rate with this, but keep in mind both my tumors are small.
Anyway, bottom line is that brain mets are treatable and from what I've read becoming more common. As cure rates for lung cancer increase there finding more developing. Mine I was told, went directly from the lung via bloodstream and developed very slowly over the last 2 and 1/2 years.
Please feel free to PM me if you have questions. Remember theres always HOPE. You and your husband will be in my prayers.
God bless and be well
Bobmc - NSCLC- stageIIB-left pneumonectomomy- 5/2/01, recurrent brain mets 12/18/03- completed WBR.
"absolutely inist on enjoying life today!"

Posts: 7
Joined: Jan 2004

My husband underwent 15 sessions 250 rads/day of whole brain radiation which he finished 2 weeks ago and still is experiencing redness/dryness on his forehead. He also started taxotere (for recurrence in his lung) on Monday and is feeling quite sick. His eyes are bothering him also. He is still very fatigued from the radiation also. When does the short term radiation effects get better? And, has anyone gotten taxotere for second line treatment? It seems to be harder on him then the carbo/taxol he got the first time. Thanks

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