Keytruda, So Far

derMaus Member Posts: 558 Member

I had my third Keytruda infusion last week and the doctor (main oncologist) confirmed what we already knew: the tumor has indeed shrunk. He didn't even do an exam, just said "Last time you were in here you kept shifting in your seat because you couldn't get comfortable. Today, your eyes are clear and you're sitting comfortably. This tells me that the treatment is working". I think he was a little miffed, though, when I attributed the shrinkage to radiation alone; he indicated that the Keytruda is the starring player here, with a supporting role from radiation. Silly me. I also asked exactly what kind of cancer this was, since the biopsy said "suspect intestinal". He shrugged and indicated that cancer cells can arise from a specific place, or they can be wayward stem cells that lodged in the wrong place. He said that that's actually very common and, in my case, doesn't really make difference since (1) it received radiation, and (2) Keytruda is having a good effect. He felt so positively about the progress that he said I may be able to avoid surgery. I was happy to hear that since I'm less sanguine about surgery than I once was.

The fact remains, however, that I can easily feel the tumor when I prod my pelvis, and while it's shrunk it's in no way gone. It's about 8 cm or so, as best I can estimate - in other words, back to where I started before it blew up. I'm still limping when I walk and can't go very far - maybe 50 yards, at most - without resting. So I wonder if I'm still stage IV, or did I revert to III when the mets were gone? The new tumor is a different cancer, localized at it's point of origin. Regardless, I'm just happy for any progress, and the prospect of skipping another surgery. Crossing my fingers and praying, and wishing Lou Ann was still with us (I always think of her as the Keytruda queen).


  • oldbeauty
    oldbeauty Member Posts: 369 Member
    Interesting Update

    Thank you for sharing your progress report, Bobbi.  It's especially pleasant to see that you and your doctor are frankly conversing.  You are in uncharted territory so I have no useful response, just pleased to see that you are more comfortable and accepting the good news.  While I agree it would be meaningful to you to know the identity of the 8 cm beast, I think I would focus on the fact that it has shrunk and may well continue to shrink.  I would think that even if surgery is recommended down the road it is better to work on a smaller tumor.  But I also understand a desire to have it out, whether by immunotherapy or surgery.  So I guess the bottom line is that you soldier on, enjoying the pain relief and ability to move around freely and accept the need to rest when you must.  You are lucky, I think, that the medicos probably find you an interesting patient and, to me, that translates to alertness and attention to your condition, complaints, progress, etc.  The fact that you actually are improving, I think, is of great value to science and to YOU, of course.  Best wishes for your continued good fortune.  Oldbeauty

  • NoTimeForCancer
    NoTimeForCancer Member Posts: 3,453 Member
    B, so glad to hear the pain

    B, so glad to hear the pain is less and appreciate the update.  When we see what Keytrude did to help Lou Ann - why shouldn't we BELIEVE that it can help you more?  Keep pushing those docs!

  • Donna Faye
    Donna Faye Member Posts: 427 Member
    I agree

    with OB and NTFC - so glad you are better - and we all know that "better" has different meanings for each of us. I follow you closely as we have sort of been on the same path and I am wondering about options as time goes on. Your attitude is always practical and in control...keep us informed as things go along. Hoping for continued shrinkage.

  • Northwoodsgirl
    Northwoodsgirl Member Posts: 571
    Keytruda and radiation

    Bobbi, I am so happy to hear that your treatments have “shifted the curve“ back towards shrinking the tumor. Your physician has thought a lot about you as evidenced by the observation about your ability to sit comfortably. I am keeping you in my prayers! ((Hug))


  • barnyardgal
    barnyardgal Member Posts: 272 Member
    I'm so glad to hear you are

    I'm so glad to hear you are feeling better, and that keytruda is working. 

  • Abbycat2
    Abbycat2 Member Posts: 644 Member
    This is welcomed news, Bobbi!

    Hearing that word- shrinking- is so positive. Let’s see if the tumor continues to shrink which I suspect will happen. B, I am glad to hear that you are feeling better. Thanks for keeping us in the loop and let us know how you are doing up ahead.



  • Wannabeatit
    Wannabeatit Member Posts: 100 Member
    So glad to hear that the

    So glad to hear that the tumor is shrinking. I am always thinking of you and your journey. I agree with Donna Faye on how you handle things. You are a great role model for all of us.

  • Armywife
    Armywife Member Posts: 451 Member

    This is great news.  So thankful to hear that the radiation/Keytruda combo is a winner.   I always appreciate your updates because they are so thorough and thoughtful - and I'll be eligible for Keytruda at recurrence, so I especially love hearing this news, for your sake and for my future.  Happy for you!

  • ConnieSW
    ConnieSW Member Posts: 1,688 Member
    Way to go

    This is so encouraging-I'm looking forward to more updates in the same vein. If my knees weren't so creaky, I'd be doing a happy dance.  You are our Jimmy Carter, only younger and prettier. 

  • cmb
    cmb Member Posts: 1,001 Member
    Fingers crossed

    I'm also keeping my fingers crossed that your good news continues while on Keytruda.

  • Jairoldi
    Jairoldi Member Posts: 221 Member

    What a relief to know you are experiencing some relief and that your medical regimens are showing promising results. I also appreciate your candor and humor.

    All my best wishes,


  • derMaus
    derMaus Member Posts: 558 Member
    Thank you my friends for the

    Thank you my friends for the words of support and encouragement. You don't know what it means to me. Best always, B

  • rcdeman
    rcdeman Member Posts: 263 Member
    So glad to know something's

    So glad to know something's working to shrink the tumor and that the cancer is localized and hasn't metastasized. When it shrinks enough, maybe a minor surgery can be done to remove the rest of it! Thank you for your update, Bobbi. Will continue to pray for you!