Avastin

antcat
antcat Member Posts: 270
edited March 2014 in Ovarian Cancer #1
Hi everyone, I'm new to the discussion board. I have had ovarian cancer since Nov 2006 and have had 3 recurrences. I'm currently on Avastin and Cytoxan. Has anyone had this treatment and what type of results have you received with it. I was previously on Doxil and after 3 treatments, the tumors got a little larger. Prior to that for 6 months in 2010, I was on Gemzar and Carboplatin and could not complete the carbo as had an allergy to prior use of this drug and was on Gemzar alone, which did not work. Has anyone tried anything different that seemed to work? I was not able to have surgery this go around, so they are trying chemotherapy alone.

Comments

  • nancy591
    nancy591 Member Posts: 1,027 Member
    2nd&3rd remission?
    Glad that you have successfully fought recurrences. I am still battling my first recurrence since January of 2010. I was initially diagnosed in 2008. Since my recurrence I've been on Doxil, Gemzar/Carbo, like you Carbo was dropped after 2nd infusion due to allergic reaction. I continued on Carbo alone for 5 more rounds then went on to a clinical trial. I am now on Avastin/Cytoxan. I go for my 2nd infusion on Friday. I am definatelu due for some good results. There was a lady on here named BonnieR who had some good results from this combo several years back. My doc tells me if this combo doesn't work he would try Avastin/Taxol.

    How long was your 1st and 2nd remissions? Is this your 3rd recurrence?
  • antcat
    antcat Member Posts: 270
    nancy591 said:

    2nd&3rd remission?
    Glad that you have successfully fought recurrences. I am still battling my first recurrence since January of 2010. I was initially diagnosed in 2008. Since my recurrence I've been on Doxil, Gemzar/Carbo, like you Carbo was dropped after 2nd infusion due to allergic reaction. I continued on Carbo alone for 5 more rounds then went on to a clinical trial. I am now on Avastin/Cytoxan. I go for my 2nd infusion on Friday. I am definatelu due for some good results. There was a lady on here named BonnieR who had some good results from this combo several years back. My doc tells me if this combo doesn't work he would try Avastin/Taxol.

    How long was your 1st and 2nd remissions? Is this your 3rd recurrence?

    My remission since 2006
    Thanks for responding. I was originally diagnosed in 11/06 and started on Taxotere/Carbo for 6 cycles. I went for 14 months with no recurrence. Then in 5/08, I had my first recurrence, was operated on and went on Taxotere/Carbo again for 6 cycles. Then in 12/09, I had a second recurrence, was operated on and went on Gemzar/Carbo from Feb. - June 2010. Apparently, the Gemzar didn't do the trick for me and at some point (I went for a CT scan in 7/10, there were multiple tumors. I started Doxil in Oct 2010, for 3 cycles, and it didn't work. So, they immediately stopped the Doxil and started me on Avastin/Cytoxan. I go for my 3rd treatment 2/9 and then will probably have another CT scan. I really need some good results too. I was afraid of the Avastin because I heard it raises blood pressure and could cause bleeding. But so far, my blood pressure has been normal. I didn't use Taxol originally because I had a reaction to it initially and I heard it causes neuropathy in the hands & feet.
  • nancy591
    nancy591 Member Posts: 1,027 Member
    antcat said:

    My remission since 2006
    Thanks for responding. I was originally diagnosed in 11/06 and started on Taxotere/Carbo for 6 cycles. I went for 14 months with no recurrence. Then in 5/08, I had my first recurrence, was operated on and went on Taxotere/Carbo again for 6 cycles. Then in 12/09, I had a second recurrence, was operated on and went on Gemzar/Carbo from Feb. - June 2010. Apparently, the Gemzar didn't do the trick for me and at some point (I went for a CT scan in 7/10, there were multiple tumors. I started Doxil in Oct 2010, for 3 cycles, and it didn't work. So, they immediately stopped the Doxil and started me on Avastin/Cytoxan. I go for my 3rd treatment 2/9 and then will probably have another CT scan. I really need some good results too. I was afraid of the Avastin because I heard it raises blood pressure and could cause bleeding. But so far, my blood pressure has been normal. I didn't use Taxol originally because I had a reaction to it initially and I heard it causes neuropathy in the hands & feet.

    avastin
    I was afraid of the avastin due to the bowel issues. My BP is normally low so I wasn't worried about that. I was diagnosed in 2008 and had my recurrence confirmed in November 2009 which was about 8 months after I completed my first line treatment. My first line treatment was 5 IV carbo/taxol, illeostomy reversal then 3 IP cisplat/taxol. When I had my reversal they took a 2nd look and biopsies. All came back clean. Still, I had a recurrence several months later. My recurrence was caught early by PT/CT. Actually, the CT portion of my scan was clear. It was seen on the PET, a small 13mm area on my colon. Now I have several areas and lymphnodes.

    Looks like you are several weeks ahead of me. I estimate my scan will be sometime in March. If it is better or the same I will be heading some place warm for a few days!!!
  • Disneynutt
    Disneynutt Member Posts: 134 Member
    I haven't seen many people
    I haven't seen many people have luck with Doxil. Is it effective? That is probably next for me. I had luck with Avastin/Taxotere but it made me major yucky.

    I should make it clear that I think it was the taxotere, plus the shots I had to have, that made me ill. Avastin was no big deal. No bleeding ... no raised blood pressure, etc.. So don't worry. A very small percentage of people have serious problems.

    I wish you loads of luck.

    -Kate
  • pattysoo
    pattysoo Member Posts: 170
    Avastin
    I had 5 treatments w/Avastin. 4 were with Carbo/Taxol and then one of plain Avastin for maintenance. The side effects for this drug are a bit scary, so be sure to read up on everything before you and your doctor decide. I noticed no side effects myself. My blood pressure is really low normally. I did start having a bloody. drippy nose in the mornings. I still have some bloody mucus each morning when I get up - 3 months after my last Avastin infusion. So the effects seem to be enduring. But everyone is different, and I think lots of people take it and notice nothing. I like to think that the Avastin made the chemo more effective - I hope so.
  • jloe
    jloe Member Posts: 174
    pattysoo said:

    Avastin
    I had 5 treatments w/Avastin. 4 were with Carbo/Taxol and then one of plain Avastin for maintenance. The side effects for this drug are a bit scary, so be sure to read up on everything before you and your doctor decide. I noticed no side effects myself. My blood pressure is really low normally. I did start having a bloody. drippy nose in the mornings. I still have some bloody mucus each morning when I get up - 3 months after my last Avastin infusion. So the effects seem to be enduring. But everyone is different, and I think lots of people take it and notice nothing. I like to think that the Avastin made the chemo more effective - I hope so.

    Avastin and Cytoxan
    I was dx 8/2006 and was only in remission once for a few months. Many surgeries and chemo combos since. I was on Avastin & Taxotere for (mostly Taxotere) for about 5 treatments. CT/PET showed new very growth in the same area that I had before. Then Avastin every 3 weeks and daily Cytoxin 50mg. I did have elevated BP and it was controlled for the most part with BP meds until the fouth treatment and it was starting to elevate again. When I went for the 6th round there was protien in the urine so he stopped it and I did another CT/PET. It shoed very little change in the previous scan 4 months prior. I am considered stable and looking at other treatments that I will start soon. I just met with another doctor who did tell me that are some bp meds out there that can also assist in controlling the protien problem and that there is a good possibility that both doctors will put me back on Avastin. There have been a lot of good results with Avastin. I have no other side effects with this combination. Good luck!
  • antcat
    antcat Member Posts: 270

    I haven't seen many people
    I haven't seen many people have luck with Doxil. Is it effective? That is probably next for me. I had luck with Avastin/Taxotere but it made me major yucky.

    I should make it clear that I think it was the taxotere, plus the shots I had to have, that made me ill. Avastin was no big deal. No bleeding ... no raised blood pressure, etc.. So don't worry. A very small percentage of people have serious problems.

    I wish you loads of luck.

    -Kate

    Doxil
    Hi, I didn't have any luck with the Doxil, in fact, the tumors got a little larger, not much, but they grew. After 3 cycles, I was taken off of Doxil and put on Avastin/Cytoxan. I did develop a rash while on Doxil, along with mouth sores, which are very common.

    Good luck.
  • Disneynutt
    Disneynutt Member Posts: 134 Member
    jloe said:

    Avastin and Cytoxan
    I was dx 8/2006 and was only in remission once for a few months. Many surgeries and chemo combos since. I was on Avastin & Taxotere for (mostly Taxotere) for about 5 treatments. CT/PET showed new very growth in the same area that I had before. Then Avastin every 3 weeks and daily Cytoxin 50mg. I did have elevated BP and it was controlled for the most part with BP meds until the fouth treatment and it was starting to elevate again. When I went for the 6th round there was protien in the urine so he stopped it and I did another CT/PET. It shoed very little change in the previous scan 4 months prior. I am considered stable and looking at other treatments that I will start soon. I just met with another doctor who did tell me that are some bp meds out there that can also assist in controlling the protien problem and that there is a good possibility that both doctors will put me back on Avastin. There have been a lot of good results with Avastin. I have no other side effects with this combination. Good luck!

    You know jloe.. you have
    You know jloe.. you have given me new hope. You were dx in 2006 and were in remission only once and have had many combos of drugs since. That is probably the life I am facing too although I feel my doctor has already written me off since she wrote on my chart: Prognosis: poor. How long were you in remission? You say for a few months. It was 2 months for me. I am currently not in treatment as I am trying to get into MD Anderson but I think my next chemical will be Doxil.

    Thanks for posting and best of luck.

    -Kate
  • antcat
    antcat Member Posts: 270

    You know jloe.. you have
    You know jloe.. you have given me new hope. You were dx in 2006 and were in remission only once and have had many combos of drugs since. That is probably the life I am facing too although I feel my doctor has already written me off since she wrote on my chart: Prognosis: poor. How long were you in remission? You say for a few months. It was 2 months for me. I am currently not in treatment as I am trying to get into MD Anderson but I think my next chemical will be Doxil.

    Thanks for posting and best of luck.

    -Kate

    from: antcat
    I read your note to jloe, please don't give up hope. I try not to but I know it's hard. I've been on 4 different chemo rounds already. I have a wonderful compassionate gynecologist/oncologist, who always tries to encourage me. I was originally diagnosed with ovarian cancer Stage IIA and my gyn/oncologist told me the stage will never change. I have been through 3 medical oncologists so far and the 2nd one decided that despite what my records said, she changed my Stage to III. She had no documentation to justify that and I was very upset and spoke to my gyn/onc. He explained to me that I was still 2A. That oncologist offered me no hope whatsoever. She said I would be treated but never cured and I told her that was not for her to make that statement. I did leave that oncologist and decided to see another oncologist. But she was just as abrupt, and rude and would not let me participate in my treatment plan. I told her that I was just as important in my treatment but it was her way or no way. So, I didn't even start with her after the initial consultation. I decided to go to Memorial Sloan Kettering in NYC and I am very happy with my medical oncologist. I spoke with him about my fears that this cancer is still in me and he gave me hope. That is what you need. Hope, and I can understand what you feel. I, myself, try to keep positive, but sometimes, it does get overwhelming and I do worry.
  • Susan523
    Susan523 Member Posts: 231 Member

    You know jloe.. you have
    You know jloe.. you have given me new hope. You were dx in 2006 and were in remission only once and have had many combos of drugs since. That is probably the life I am facing too although I feel my doctor has already written me off since she wrote on my chart: Prognosis: poor. How long were you in remission? You say for a few months. It was 2 months for me. I am currently not in treatment as I am trying to get into MD Anderson but I think my next chemical will be Doxil.

    Thanks for posting and best of luck.

    -Kate

    Hi, Kate~
    I'm sorry~ but I think it is entirely rude and unprofessional of your doctor to write on your chart "poor" Prognosis!!! Who is HE/SHE to take away your hope?? OR to judge what your body is going to; and how you and your body are going to react to treatments??

    Please don't let her take away your Hope~~ Don't let her "write you off". Is there another doctor in your area; one who will "give you a chance, and not 'write you off'??"
    Gosh~ WE ALL need better support than THAT!

    I'm sorry she did that to you, Kate~ it just isn't right.

    Take care, and Best always~
    ~Susan xoxo
  • Disneynutt
    Disneynutt Member Posts: 134 Member
    Susan523 said:

    Hi, Kate~
    I'm sorry~ but I think it is entirely rude and unprofessional of your doctor to write on your chart "poor" Prognosis!!! Who is HE/SHE to take away your hope?? OR to judge what your body is going to; and how you and your body are going to react to treatments??

    Please don't let her take away your Hope~~ Don't let her "write you off". Is there another doctor in your area; one who will "give you a chance, and not 'write you off'??"
    Gosh~ WE ALL need better support than THAT!

    I'm sorry she did that to you, Kate~ it just isn't right.

    Take care, and Best always~
    ~Susan xoxo

    Thanks so much
    Thanks for your kind words antcat and Susan. You are correct, it is terrible to read those words on your chart. All the fighting we do to maintain some kind of emotional equilibrium and then ... BAM!!! ALL GONE. It wouldn't have been so bad had she had anything positive to say like... don't worry there is still so much hope. If she had only tossed me some little crumb of hope to make me feel better but she didn't. I try very hard to not let this stop me and I think in fact that it may spur me forward to find something or someone new. It is very hard though especially when you see your loved ones suffer along with you. When I told me sister (we are twins) she just sobbed and sobbed. It was horrible. We just lost our Mother in June and now this. I feel so awful for her. Gosh darn my doctor!!!

    I sent my stuff to MD Anderson and will submit my records to the University of Michigan also. Then I wait.

    But thanks again so much for your concern. It makes me feel better. :-) Best of luck to you.

    Best wishes,
    Kate
  • jloe
    jloe Member Posts: 174

    You know jloe.. you have
    You know jloe.. you have given me new hope. You were dx in 2006 and were in remission only once and have had many combos of drugs since. That is probably the life I am facing too although I feel my doctor has already written me off since she wrote on my chart: Prognosis: poor. How long were you in remission? You say for a few months. It was 2 months for me. I am currently not in treatment as I am trying to get into MD Anderson but I think my next chemical will be Doxil.

    Thanks for posting and best of luck.

    -Kate

    Short remission
    Kate,
    Sorry it took me a while to get back to you. I was only in remission for about 5 months. He has used the term "chronic but stable" with me. I kind of understand that. I really hate some these medical terms. They just sound awful. It really sounds like you are so ready to make the move to another doctor. My remission was after 8 IV (Doxil and something else) then 6 IP (cisplatin and something else). I have had so many combos of treatment I cannot remember them all. Good luck and I hope you get to Anderson soon so that you start fighting it again!

    Joni
  • lindaprocopio
    lindaprocopio Member Posts: 1,980

    Thanks so much
    Thanks for your kind words antcat and Susan. You are correct, it is terrible to read those words on your chart. All the fighting we do to maintain some kind of emotional equilibrium and then ... BAM!!! ALL GONE. It wouldn't have been so bad had she had anything positive to say like... don't worry there is still so much hope. If she had only tossed me some little crumb of hope to make me feel better but she didn't. I try very hard to not let this stop me and I think in fact that it may spur me forward to find something or someone new. It is very hard though especially when you see your loved ones suffer along with you. When I told me sister (we are twins) she just sobbed and sobbed. It was horrible. We just lost our Mother in June and now this. I feel so awful for her. Gosh darn my doctor!!!

    I sent my stuff to MD Anderson and will submit my records to the University of Michigan also. Then I wait.

    But thanks again so much for your concern. It makes me feel better. :-) Best of luck to you.

    Best wishes,
    Kate

    Those simply hopeful words we all cling to...
    I know my prognosis is pretty grim. But I hang onto the hopeful words my gyne-onc said when he asked how my business was going. I told him that on January 1st that I'd offically given the last shares of my business to my kids so that they could avoid inheritance tax later. Here was his magical hopeful response that I cling to in my darkest moments:

    "Well, that certainly seems a little premature!", and he looked perfectly sincere.

    If oncologists only knew how much their casual observations affect their patients!
  • Disneynutt
    Disneynutt Member Posts: 134 Member
    jloe said:

    Short remission
    Kate,
    Sorry it took me a while to get back to you. I was only in remission for about 5 months. He has used the term "chronic but stable" with me. I kind of understand that. I really hate some these medical terms. They just sound awful. It really sounds like you are so ready to make the move to another doctor. My remission was after 8 IV (Doxil and something else) then 6 IP (cisplatin and something else). I have had so many combos of treatment I cannot remember them all. Good luck and I hope you get to Anderson soon so that you start fighting it again!

    Joni

    Ok, Joni.. thanks for
    Ok, Joni.. thanks for writing. "chronic but stable" would be ok with me. I think I could live with that. My CT showed not much progression since last May but that may be because it went away and then grew back to the same size it was in May. Oh well. We'll see what happens. I need to get back into treatment soon. I haven't had all the drug combos you've had but I need a doctor who is willing to do that, just keep mixing and matching. But you have given me hope after the doctor took it away.

    So are you back in treatment right now?

    Best,
    Kate
  • jloe
    jloe Member Posts: 174

    Ok, Joni.. thanks for
    Ok, Joni.. thanks for writing. "chronic but stable" would be ok with me. I think I could live with that. My CT showed not much progression since last May but that may be because it went away and then grew back to the same size it was in May. Oh well. We'll see what happens. I need to get back into treatment soon. I haven't had all the drug combos you've had but I need a doctor who is willing to do that, just keep mixing and matching. But you have given me hope after the doctor took it away.

    So are you back in treatment right now?

    Best,
    Kate

    Just got my new schedule today
    Kate,
    I will now start Topetecan (spelling) 3 weeks on and 1 off. I am still on daily oral Cytoxan 50mg. My gyno/onc and the one, who many from this site have seen at MSKCC, have agreed that the only trials that I would really qualify for are phase 1 because of the many treatments I have had. They agreed that the trials available right now would not be of a better benefit than that of the conventional treatments. I know that you are seeking another opinion and from your previous posts, I don't blame you. I have really learned how to keep my doctors working together and relied on them for the advice. I know that sounds like I'm lazy but I also asked other doctors for their opinion about the other doctors. I know that sounds crazy but it has really helped me. I could never research the medical field on my own the way these brilliant women have who are on this site. I am a research investigator in my professional life and have learned how to put the people together who know better than me to help me make decisions. You just might be in a very similar situation as I am and I hope you can get the team together for you. I hope you feel comfortable and trusting with your next medical team.

    Joni
  • Disneynutt
    Disneynutt Member Posts: 134 Member
    jloe said:

    Just got my new schedule today
    Kate,
    I will now start Topetecan (spelling) 3 weeks on and 1 off. I am still on daily oral Cytoxan 50mg. My gyno/onc and the one, who many from this site have seen at MSKCC, have agreed that the only trials that I would really qualify for are phase 1 because of the many treatments I have had. They agreed that the trials available right now would not be of a better benefit than that of the conventional treatments. I know that you are seeking another opinion and from your previous posts, I don't blame you. I have really learned how to keep my doctors working together and relied on them for the advice. I know that sounds like I'm lazy but I also asked other doctors for their opinion about the other doctors. I know that sounds crazy but it has really helped me. I could never research the medical field on my own the way these brilliant women have who are on this site. I am a research investigator in my professional life and have learned how to put the people together who know better than me to help me make decisions. You just might be in a very similar situation as I am and I hope you can get the team together for you. I hope you feel comfortable and trusting with your next medical team.

    Joni

    That was one of the drugs my
    That was one of the drugs my doctor mentioned.. topetecan. She said Doxil or Topetecan.. take your pick. Geez, she seems to cavalier about my survival.

    I sure wish you all the best Joni. I'll keep you in my thoughts.

    -Kate