Cancer Spreads with Chemo?

Options
Shayenne
Shayenne Member Posts: 2,342
edited March 2014 in Colorectal Cancer #1
Does that happen? I though Chemo killed the cells, but can cancer still grow and spread everywhere, when you're on treatment? it hasn't I don't think with me, but in reading some of these posts, it scares me to think that new cancer grows elsewhere when I thought Chemo was supposed to be shrinking or killing it?
«1

Comments

  • msccolon
    msccolon Member Posts: 1,917 Member
    Options
    cancer spread
    if it continues to grow on chemo, it means the chemo isn't working; unfortunately that does happen at times. Usually they just have to change the drugs being used. However, sometimes this beast is just too persistent and it doesn't respond to chemo, which is why research is so important.
    mary
  • Shayenne
    Shayenne Member Posts: 2,342
    Options
    msccolon said:

    cancer spread
    if it continues to grow on chemo, it means the chemo isn't working; unfortunately that does happen at times. Usually they just have to change the drugs being used. However, sometimes this beast is just too persistent and it doesn't respond to chemo, which is why research is so important.
    mary

    Scary!!
    Yikes! I didn't know that, god I hope mine is working, I would hate to think of going through all this and it's not responding. I agree Research is very important, in fact, I'm supposed to be donating some tissue soon, I just forgot the name of the girl I was supposed to talk too about that.
  • ldot123
    ldot123 Member Posts: 272
    Options
    Shayenne said:

    Scary!!
    Yikes! I didn't know that, god I hope mine is working, I would hate to think of going through all this and it's not responding. I agree Research is very important, in fact, I'm supposed to be donating some tissue soon, I just forgot the name of the girl I was supposed to talk too about that.

    Usually it just works
    Hey Shayenne,

    I know what you are going through but I think it a lot of cases if not most it does kill the cancer cells. I would just assume it is doing what it is supposed to do. Easier said than done, I know, but hang in there. I am sending positive vibes your way.

    Cheers, Lance
  • CherylHutch
    CherylHutch Member Posts: 1,375 Member
    Options
    Cancer spread
    With cancer, anything is possible... that is why it sucks! The analogy you can use is with a cold. With a cold, you take cold meds and for some people they work like a charm, with others, they don't do a thing and they still have to go through the whole darn cycle of the cold because none of the known cold meds work. The difference between a cold and cancer is he cold has it's cycle and then it's gone. With cancer, it will keep growing unless you take some pretty drastic measures (surgery/radiation) and heavy duty drug treatments (chemo). If you do these measures and the darn beast survives, then you have to try different drastic measures or drug treatments and hopefully will find one that stops the beast in his tracks... rather than the beast taking over.

    Chemo will definitely kill off some cells... that's been proven and we know that happens. But some cells seem to manage to hold their breath until the chemo treatments are over and then they travel on their merry way until they find somewhere to settle and grow (dirty pigs!!)

    In my case, as far as we knew when I was diagnosed, I only had the one tumour, which was removed surgically. Because it had broken through the intestinal wall and formed an abscess which was touching the abdominal wall and bladder (the abscess also had to be removed) AND I had 1 out of 17 lymph nodes test positive... I had to have the chemo/radiation. The chemo was to kill off any potential single cells floating around (some call this mop up) and the radiation was to zap the heck out of the section of abdominal wall that the abscess had been attached to. After that was all said and done, my CEA level rose, a PET scan was done and they found 1 out of 7 mets lit up the scan and there was a large tumour on my adrenal gland.

    Now, the question... were they both there at the time of DX and the chemo did not affect them (IE: the cancer lived and continued growing while I was on chemo?) or did it somehow start anew after chemo (between the end of Oct/07 and Dec/07)? No one knows but I would think either it had been there all along and ignored the chemo or started shortly before the chemo was over. Either way, it doesn't make sense that it survived all the chemo that was thrown at me!

    Well, we treated the adrenal tumour by removing the gland (last June)... and we ablated the one lung met in Jan/09. Now we are keeping an eye on the other mets on the lung that aren't big enough to light up the PET scan.

    So the above is just to show that chemo is a drug treatment and is one tool that is used in treating cancer. But if the cancer remains or pops up somewhere else, there are other tools that are all part of the treatment plan. Even chemo...there's not just one chemo... there are a lot of chemo drugs out there and if one doesn't work, they'll try another. But that's where research is sooo important... to figure out the various combinations of chemo that will work, and to come up with new, bigger and better drugs.

    Hugggggs,

    Cheryl
  • msccolon
    msccolon Member Posts: 1,917 Member
    Options

    Cancer spread
    With cancer, anything is possible... that is why it sucks! The analogy you can use is with a cold. With a cold, you take cold meds and for some people they work like a charm, with others, they don't do a thing and they still have to go through the whole darn cycle of the cold because none of the known cold meds work. The difference between a cold and cancer is he cold has it's cycle and then it's gone. With cancer, it will keep growing unless you take some pretty drastic measures (surgery/radiation) and heavy duty drug treatments (chemo). If you do these measures and the darn beast survives, then you have to try different drastic measures or drug treatments and hopefully will find one that stops the beast in his tracks... rather than the beast taking over.

    Chemo will definitely kill off some cells... that's been proven and we know that happens. But some cells seem to manage to hold their breath until the chemo treatments are over and then they travel on their merry way until they find somewhere to settle and grow (dirty pigs!!)

    In my case, as far as we knew when I was diagnosed, I only had the one tumour, which was removed surgically. Because it had broken through the intestinal wall and formed an abscess which was touching the abdominal wall and bladder (the abscess also had to be removed) AND I had 1 out of 17 lymph nodes test positive... I had to have the chemo/radiation. The chemo was to kill off any potential single cells floating around (some call this mop up) and the radiation was to zap the heck out of the section of abdominal wall that the abscess had been attached to. After that was all said and done, my CEA level rose, a PET scan was done and they found 1 out of 7 mets lit up the scan and there was a large tumour on my adrenal gland.

    Now, the question... were they both there at the time of DX and the chemo did not affect them (IE: the cancer lived and continued growing while I was on chemo?) or did it somehow start anew after chemo (between the end of Oct/07 and Dec/07)? No one knows but I would think either it had been there all along and ignored the chemo or started shortly before the chemo was over. Either way, it doesn't make sense that it survived all the chemo that was thrown at me!

    Well, we treated the adrenal tumour by removing the gland (last June)... and we ablated the one lung met in Jan/09. Now we are keeping an eye on the other mets on the lung that aren't big enough to light up the PET scan.

    So the above is just to show that chemo is a drug treatment and is one tool that is used in treating cancer. But if the cancer remains or pops up somewhere else, there are other tools that are all part of the treatment plan. Even chemo...there's not just one chemo... there are a lot of chemo drugs out there and if one doesn't work, they'll try another. But that's where research is sooo important... to figure out the various combinations of chemo that will work, and to come up with new, bigger and better drugs.

    Hugggggs,

    Cheryl

    LOL!
    Your comment "Chemo will definitely kill off some cells... that's been proven and we know that happens. But some cells seem to manage to hold their breath until the chemo treatments are over and then they travel on their merry way until they find somewhere to settle and grow (dirty pigs!!)" made me laugh! The thought of them holding their breaths was great! and dirty pigs indeed!
    mary
  • dorookie
    dorookie Member Posts: 1,731 Member
    Options
    You ask a good question
    I am waiting for my PET scan results, I get them tomorrow. I have been on Xeloda for 4 rounds now and I am scared to death that the cancer might still be there or has come back while I am doing chemo. Last time it only took about 4 months after my last chemo for the beast to return in my lung. I just pray this time it wont come back. If it does I dont know what I am going to do. I dont know if I can continue to live on chemo, it sucks. I havent been able to work, I am so tired all the time and if I am tired I am sick. Well will knw tomorrow, wish me luck..
    God Bles
    Beth
  • msccolon
    msccolon Member Posts: 1,917 Member
    Options
    dorookie said:

    You ask a good question
    I am waiting for my PET scan results, I get them tomorrow. I have been on Xeloda for 4 rounds now and I am scared to death that the cancer might still be there or has come back while I am doing chemo. Last time it only took about 4 months after my last chemo for the beast to return in my lung. I just pray this time it wont come back. If it does I dont know what I am going to do. I dont know if I can continue to live on chemo, it sucks. I havent been able to work, I am so tired all the time and if I am tired I am sick. Well will knw tomorrow, wish me luck..
    God Bles
    Beth

    Luck and prayers!
    Take a breath and know that you can only deal with the right now. Don't try to what if and don't try to deal with a problem that hasn't come yet. Your results will be good. God always gives you the strength you need to deal with what you need to deal with; not more, not less. It makes it too hard to get through today if you worry about tomorrow, so just don't do it! I continue to pray for you; you are a strong warrior and you CAN do it!
    mary
  • Shayenne
    Shayenne Member Posts: 2,342
    Options
    dorookie said:

    You ask a good question
    I am waiting for my PET scan results, I get them tomorrow. I have been on Xeloda for 4 rounds now and I am scared to death that the cancer might still be there or has come back while I am doing chemo. Last time it only took about 4 months after my last chemo for the beast to return in my lung. I just pray this time it wont come back. If it does I dont know what I am going to do. I dont know if I can continue to live on chemo, it sucks. I havent been able to work, I am so tired all the time and if I am tired I am sick. Well will knw tomorrow, wish me luck..
    God Bles
    Beth

    Good Luck Beth!
    You are in my prayers, and I know chemo is so hard, but you can't let it beat you.. please beat IT! I have alot of energy when I'm off chemo, but man I know how hard it knocks you down, it definitley isn't fun, but I won't let it take over me, I just hate that I'll be feeling good one week, and then crappy the next, but I guess if that's what it's going to take to try and get better, I will have to do it, good luck tomorrow! let us know what happens!
  • dorookie
    dorookie Member Posts: 1,731 Member
    Options
    msccolon said:

    Luck and prayers!
    Take a breath and know that you can only deal with the right now. Don't try to what if and don't try to deal with a problem that hasn't come yet. Your results will be good. God always gives you the strength you need to deal with what you need to deal with; not more, not less. It makes it too hard to get through today if you worry about tomorrow, so just don't do it! I continue to pray for you; you are a strong warrior and you CAN do it!
    mary

    Thank you both
    I will keep you posted and I am trying very hard to stay positive....Till tomorrow...

    Beth
  • PhillieG
    PhillieG Member Posts: 4,866 Member
    Options

    Cancer spread
    With cancer, anything is possible... that is why it sucks! The analogy you can use is with a cold. With a cold, you take cold meds and for some people they work like a charm, with others, they don't do a thing and they still have to go through the whole darn cycle of the cold because none of the known cold meds work. The difference between a cold and cancer is he cold has it's cycle and then it's gone. With cancer, it will keep growing unless you take some pretty drastic measures (surgery/radiation) and heavy duty drug treatments (chemo). If you do these measures and the darn beast survives, then you have to try different drastic measures or drug treatments and hopefully will find one that stops the beast in his tracks... rather than the beast taking over.

    Chemo will definitely kill off some cells... that's been proven and we know that happens. But some cells seem to manage to hold their breath until the chemo treatments are over and then they travel on their merry way until they find somewhere to settle and grow (dirty pigs!!)

    In my case, as far as we knew when I was diagnosed, I only had the one tumour, which was removed surgically. Because it had broken through the intestinal wall and formed an abscess which was touching the abdominal wall and bladder (the abscess also had to be removed) AND I had 1 out of 17 lymph nodes test positive... I had to have the chemo/radiation. The chemo was to kill off any potential single cells floating around (some call this mop up) and the radiation was to zap the heck out of the section of abdominal wall that the abscess had been attached to. After that was all said and done, my CEA level rose, a PET scan was done and they found 1 out of 7 mets lit up the scan and there was a large tumour on my adrenal gland.

    Now, the question... were they both there at the time of DX and the chemo did not affect them (IE: the cancer lived and continued growing while I was on chemo?) or did it somehow start anew after chemo (between the end of Oct/07 and Dec/07)? No one knows but I would think either it had been there all along and ignored the chemo or started shortly before the chemo was over. Either way, it doesn't make sense that it survived all the chemo that was thrown at me!

    Well, we treated the adrenal tumour by removing the gland (last June)... and we ablated the one lung met in Jan/09. Now we are keeping an eye on the other mets on the lung that aren't big enough to light up the PET scan.

    So the above is just to show that chemo is a drug treatment and is one tool that is used in treating cancer. But if the cancer remains or pops up somewhere else, there are other tools that are all part of the treatment plan. Even chemo...there's not just one chemo... there are a lot of chemo drugs out there and if one doesn't work, they'll try another. But that's where research is sooo important... to figure out the various combinations of chemo that will work, and to come up with new, bigger and better drugs.

    Hugggggs,

    Cheryl

    If chemo always worked, we'd all be cured...
    Another way to put it is that chemo is like cockroaches. It works for a while then it stops killing the cells. Sometimes it works long enough to kill all of the cancer cells but I think that is why they have to keep coming up with new drugs to fight it. Strange thing that cancer is, what works on one person does not always work on another person. Keep thinking positively.
    -p
  • msccolon
    msccolon Member Posts: 1,917 Member
    Options
    PhillieG said:

    If chemo always worked, we'd all be cured...
    Another way to put it is that chemo is like cockroaches. It works for a while then it stops killing the cells. Sometimes it works long enough to kill all of the cancer cells but I think that is why they have to keep coming up with new drugs to fight it. Strange thing that cancer is, what works on one person does not always work on another person. Keep thinking positively.
    -p

    chemo (or more accurate cancer) is indeed like cockroaches!
    :)
    mary
  • Buzzard
    Buzzard Member Posts: 3,043 Member
    Options
    dorookie said:

    Thank you both
    I will keep you posted and I am trying very hard to stay positive....Till tomorrow...

    Beth

    Big Prayers tonight......
    going out to you for good results......God Bless....
  • colon2
    colon2 Member Posts: 183
    Options
    dorookie said:

    You ask a good question
    I am waiting for my PET scan results, I get them tomorrow. I have been on Xeloda for 4 rounds now and I am scared to death that the cancer might still be there or has come back while I am doing chemo. Last time it only took about 4 months after my last chemo for the beast to return in my lung. I just pray this time it wont come back. If it does I dont know what I am going to do. I dont know if I can continue to live on chemo, it sucks. I havent been able to work, I am so tired all the time and if I am tired I am sick. Well will knw tomorrow, wish me luck..
    God Bles
    Beth

    Luck
    Beth, you are being wished all the luck in the world, but even better than that you are in our prayers. We will all be praying for you. God works many miracles and He will take care of you. He knows the plans He has for you and He will be with you every step of the way . God Bless You . Carletta
  • sheri22
    sheri22 Member Posts: 273
    Options
    dorookie said:

    You ask a good question
    I am waiting for my PET scan results, I get them tomorrow. I have been on Xeloda for 4 rounds now and I am scared to death that the cancer might still be there or has come back while I am doing chemo. Last time it only took about 4 months after my last chemo for the beast to return in my lung. I just pray this time it wont come back. If it does I dont know what I am going to do. I dont know if I can continue to live on chemo, it sucks. I havent been able to work, I am so tired all the time and if I am tired I am sick. Well will knw tomorrow, wish me luck..
    God Bles
    Beth

    Beth
    Good luck on Pet scan results tommorrow you know we are all praying for you,
    just wanted to let you know I am thinking of you too hopefully youll get good news tommorrow and tommorrow nite will be celebrating

    Sheri22
  • dorookie
    dorookie Member Posts: 1,731 Member
    Options
    Buzzard said:

    Big Prayers tonight......
    going out to you for good results......God Bless....

    Thanks Buddy
    I will need them for sure. I know God will be with me no matter what the results are, I just pray for peace to accept whatever the results maybe. I am trying not to be down or depressed, because God has already given me such a wonderful gift of a upcoming grandbaby. And I thank him daily for it.

    Beth
  • dorookie
    dorookie Member Posts: 1,731 Member
    Options
    colon2 said:

    Luck
    Beth, you are being wished all the luck in the world, but even better than that you are in our prayers. We will all be praying for you. God works many miracles and He will take care of you. He knows the plans He has for you and He will be with you every step of the way . God Bless You . Carletta

    I hate to be selfish
    But I am wishing for a miracle here, I so desparately want this to be over, after two rounds of chemo I have had enough. I know many others have suffered so much more and my heart and prayers go out to them. So I guess I am being a bit selfish in wishing and hoping that the cancer is gone from my body for good. The doctor didnt call with the results, and usually that is a good thing, but last time he didnt call and I thought i was in the clear, but he waited to tell me because he knew I had an upcoming appointment with him in a few days. So the saying no news if good news isnt all that true in my case. So that is why I am very nervous, like I said I just pray for peace to accept what ever it is to be. Thanks to all of you for your prayers, please know that everyone here on this board I pray for each of you every night and will always continue to do so.

    God Bless
    Beth
  • Kathleen808
    Kathleen808 Member Posts: 2,342 Member
    Options
    dorookie said:

    Thank you both
    I will keep you posted and I am trying very hard to stay positive....Till tomorrow...

    Beth

    thinking and praying for you
    Hi Beth,
    I can imagine the waiting. You are strong. I am praying for you right now.
    Aloha,
    Kathleen
  • dorookie
    dorookie Member Posts: 1,731 Member
    Options
    sheri22 said:

    Beth
    Good luck on Pet scan results tommorrow you know we are all praying for you,
    just wanted to let you know I am thinking of you too hopefully youll get good news tommorrow and tommorrow nite will be celebrating

    Sheri22

    I wanna Dance
    and if the results are good I will be doing the naked dance all night long.. not a pretty picture but hey I dont care, I will be doing it !!! LOL

    Thanks for your prayers they mean so much to me and my family...and my new grandbaby that is on the way... I cant wait to meet her and yes I said her, because I want a granddaughter everone else wants a boy...

    Again thank you and I will be letting everyone know the results tomorrow after noon.

    Thanks
    God Bless
    Beth
  • lisa42
    lisa42 Member Posts: 3,625 Member
    Options
    wishing everyone well & having an EKG
    Hi, Everyone,
    Beth, I wish you well on your PET scan results. I definitely know firsthand how hard and awful that waiting is! I will have a scan myself in about another 3-1/2 weeks & am wondering if I'll have results that are better or are the same. My last CT scan the day before Thanksgiving, I had been on chemo for almost 3 months and my lung mets showed that they were "stable". That wasn't good enough for me- so I pray and hope after 3/1-2 more months of chemo (by the time of my scan mid March)that it will all be gone this time!!

    I have something else going on too. I have to get an EKG tomorrow morning. After having had to give myself neupogen shots 3 days in a row this past Wed-Fri, I had some symptoms Fri and Sat that I was just told today by my onology nurse (because I just told her about them today), that they weren't "normal" side effects or symptoms of neupogen. I had read about people having bone pain & also read that sometimes the pain can concentrate in the sternum. Well, with this in mind, I just assumed that my pains were related to the neupogen. About 30 min. after giving myself the 3rd shot on Friday, I got a gripping pain in my sternum that radiated around to my spine and down to my hips. It lasted about a minute & I had it 5 or 6 times over Fri-Sat. I haven't had it happen since Saturday, but my oncology nurse talked to the Dr. and said they'd all feel better if I got it checked out just in case.
    Great- this is all I need! Hopefully, it's nothing.
    I did check my blood pressure (I have a blood pressure machine) and it was a bit high, so I popped another Atenolol (which I take 50 mg./day already) and an aspirin in case anything is actually going on w/ my heart or arteries.

    It's always something when you have this beast, isn't it??

    Hope you do well!
  • msccolon
    msccolon Member Posts: 1,917 Member
    Options
    lisa42 said:

    wishing everyone well & having an EKG
    Hi, Everyone,
    Beth, I wish you well on your PET scan results. I definitely know firsthand how hard and awful that waiting is! I will have a scan myself in about another 3-1/2 weeks & am wondering if I'll have results that are better or are the same. My last CT scan the day before Thanksgiving, I had been on chemo for almost 3 months and my lung mets showed that they were "stable". That wasn't good enough for me- so I pray and hope after 3/1-2 more months of chemo (by the time of my scan mid March)that it will all be gone this time!!

    I have something else going on too. I have to get an EKG tomorrow morning. After having had to give myself neupogen shots 3 days in a row this past Wed-Fri, I had some symptoms Fri and Sat that I was just told today by my onology nurse (because I just told her about them today), that they weren't "normal" side effects or symptoms of neupogen. I had read about people having bone pain & also read that sometimes the pain can concentrate in the sternum. Well, with this in mind, I just assumed that my pains were related to the neupogen. About 30 min. after giving myself the 3rd shot on Friday, I got a gripping pain in my sternum that radiated around to my spine and down to my hips. It lasted about a minute & I had it 5 or 6 times over Fri-Sat. I haven't had it happen since Saturday, but my oncology nurse talked to the Dr. and said they'd all feel better if I got it checked out just in case.
    Great- this is all I need! Hopefully, it's nothing.
    I did check my blood pressure (I have a blood pressure machine) and it was a bit high, so I popped another Atenolol (which I take 50 mg./day already) and an aspirin in case anything is actually going on w/ my heart or arteries.

    It's always something when you have this beast, isn't it??

    Hope you do well!

    praying
    I'll be praying with you until you get your results. Hopefully it will be nothing. I swear, this beast just has a way of getting into all aspects of our life ... hopefully your heart hasn't been compromised and you will also get good results from your scan.
    mary