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Chemo failure

Posts: 2
Joined: Feb 2005

Hi, my Dad was diagnosed about 2 months ago with adenocarinoma, bronchioalviolar type, with tumor on both lungs. Went through two treatments, so far, of carboplatin and taxol, and had a CT scan last week to see how the treatment was working....seems tumors have increased! Anyone had any similar situation and what would the next steps be?

Posts: 13
Joined: Apr 2004

Sorry to hear that the taxol/carb didnot work. My husband was diagnosed feb 04' NSCLC with mets to his liver and lymph node involvementand not operable. HE also went thru his first treatments using the same combo of chemo regimes. He had 33 radiation treatments to his lung. Tests were done three months apart and the first time there was considerable shrinkage next few rounds and tests done showed slight enlargement. Then changed to Gemzar/Navelbine. Same thing happened. He is now on Alimta and has only had one round so far. He is due for a treatment today so will know more in a couple months on how it is respnding. Let me know how your dad is doing and what he goes on next. Gotta have faith in these doctors and if not find someone else. Prayers are with you and your family.

Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2005

My Dad just got bad news with his chemo therapy also. Been fighting lung cancer for years. He is no longer responding, don't know specifics. He's been given a choice of trying Pemetrexed Alimta. We are looking for anyone whose tried it and asking for side affects. Thanks for posting.

gdpawel's picture
Posts: 525
Joined: May 2001

Conventionally, oncologists rely on clinical trials in choosing chemotherapy regimens. But the statistical results of these population-based studies might not apply to an individual. For many cancers, especially after a relapse, more than one standard treatment exists. There is rarely a situation where you would get everyone to agree that there's only one form of therapy. There are over 100 cancer fighting agents. The system is overloaded with drugs and underloaded with wisdom and expertise for using them. But these drugs may have many useful applications, and it's going to take years to find out. Chemosensitivity testing offers a way of seeing if any of these new drugs might apply to your specific cancer.

Chemosensitivity testing (assay-testing) is based on a biological principle that when a drug is effective, it will induce cell-death (apoptosis) in the cancer cell (this is the new technology). If the cancer cell is resistant to a drug, apoptosis will not occur. Assay-testing for apoptosis will determine whether a drug kills the tumor. Chemosensitivity testing (assay-testing) can take the guesswork out of cancer treatment. Currently, physicians select a drug and must wait about six months to see whether it is effective on a particular patient.

The clinical utility and clinical accuracy of cell culture drug resistance testing (chemosensitivity testing) with cell-death endpoints has now been proven beyond doubt.

Data on it may be reviewed at


The cost of drugs is enormous. Patients are followed with serial CT scans, MRIs and even Pet Scans, just to see if a tumor is growing or shrinking. Not to mention the hospitalizations for toxicity, bone marrow transfusions, etc. The point is, the cost of ineffective therapy is truly enormous and assay-testing is particulary good at identifying ineffective therapy.

Look for the posting "Chemotherapy Sensitivity and Resistance Assays" (CSRAs) on this board.

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