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simultaneous radiation & chemo?

Smally
Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 2007

My son has recently been diagnosed with stage 4, non small lung cancer. He has started radiation. I have read that chemo has sometimes been given at the same time. His doctor has gone on vacation & I would like some answers today. Have any of you had any experience with these drugs been used together? What are the pros & cons?

CinciRick's picture
CinciRick
Posts: 23
Joined: Apr 2007

It is quite common to get chemo and radiaton at the same time. And as you might logically expect, it woud be more effective than just either one alone. He will likely get 2 chemo drugs at the same time plus radiation. One chemo drug might directly attack the tumors, while a second drug might attack the blood supply to the tumors.

I was diagnosed with stage 4 NSCLC last May with an initial 8 month life expectancy, but 15 months later I am still going strong and the disease progresion is slow or stopped. I hope your son can join many of us out here that are exceeding the odds and expectations from years ago.

latte7110
Posts: 2
Joined: Aug 2007

My sister was diagnosed w/ stage 4 nsclc w/ 2 small lesions in brain. She received 20 sessions of whole brain radiation (every weekday) and once a week she received taxotere and carboplatin at a lower dose (that was 3 weeks in a row) then no chemo the 4th week. When radiation was finished (July 27th).. they started her on a high (normal) dose of carbo/taxotere the following week... in early September (if the brain radiation worked) they will add avastin (shouldn't get that with active brain mets). they are also starting zometa for her bone mets. I don't know about your son - but my sister definitely needed chemotherapy during radiation.. she had quite a bit going on her lungs and it all would have kept growing! Her lungs were feeling better while she was getting radiation. Hope this helps!

Plymouthean's picture
Plymouthean
Posts: 264
Joined: Jan 2004

Hi.
I'm a six-year survivor of nsclc, 3b. I was originally diagnosed as inoperable/incurable. I was given concurrent chemo and radiation. In six months, the tumor (approximately 3.5 X 4.5 x 7.5 cm) was reduced by 75%, and removed surgically. I have been lung cancer free since then.
Take heart in the fact that medical science has made great strides in cancer treatment, and patients do survive.
My best wishes and prayers to your son and you.
Ernie

NB215
Posts: 4
Joined: Aug 2007

My brother was recently diagnosed stage 3a. Anyway according to his doctors having radiation with chemo makes both treatments work better.One works to weekens it and the other is a targeted method that shrinks it and possibly puts it in remission. This info was backed up by a second opinion we went for at Sloan Kettering in N.Y and also by the government standards of treatments.I have learned to ask alot of questions and be pushy if needed. Please let me know if this helps.

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