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Limited Small Cell Lung Cancer...

margo64
Posts: 1
Joined: Sep 2007

I am so desperate for help understanding this whole thing. My mother was diagnosed with this type of cancer 5 days ago via an X-ray.

She is extremely active and will be released from the hospital tomorrow. She orignally went in because her blood was too thick as her doc didn't have her on the right blood thinner and now we are facing this. What can we expect? They are talking Chemo and Radiation. Because it's only in one of her lungs (right) will it spread when she goes under chemo/radiation? She has had her brain, lower torso and bones checked and nothing, it hasn't spread. Will it spread if she gets chemo/radiation to these areas?

Why do people seem to go down after chemo? What if they had not seen it? Please help me to understand this :-(

cabbott
Posts: 1048
Joined: Aug 2006

I am sorry your mother was diagnosed with this disease. I do not have exactly the same kind of lung cancer, but I was also diagnosed by an Xray (for a cold that wouldn't go away) last year. It is a shock to find out you have cancer rather than a cold, but for me it was not the first time around. I have a history of breast cancer from back in '02. That time I was totally terrified and panicked. Now I realize I was no sicker after being diagnosed than the day or the month before I was diagnosed. The diagnosis just means you know a bit more of what problems you have so you can make a better game plan. You need the best doctors you can find to be on your team. They can advise you on what treatment plans will take care of this problem the best. Chemo and radiation do not spread the cancer. Cancer is a group of crazy cells. If the genes in that crazy cell are the type that can set up camp elsewhere, then the cells will spread. Chemo is like weed killer. It attacks all the fast growing cells and knocks them for a loop. Radiation zeros in on a specific area and zaps the targetted area to take on tumor cells. Oncologists are the specialist that can help plan out what chemo is best. Radiology oncologists plan what radiation methods are best. Thoracic surgeons are the specialist to determine what surgery is best.

The fact that your mom is extremely active is a big plus in her favor. Cancer treatments are strenuous and healthy folks can take more than those who are fragile. They had to check my lung capacity to determine how much surgery I could withstand. I needed to have a lobe removed. It took awhile before I could go back to the gym, but I am still active and almost back to where I was before surgery. That's good, because I know that cancer can come back and surgery is a definite possibility for me in the future. They won't consider it if I'm not in shape though, even if it gives me a better chance for a cure. If they can't operate, then I will have chemo &/or radiation.

The fact that it is not showing up elsewhere so far is also encouraging. So don't lose hope. Find a team of doctors that will fight this disease as aggressively as you want to fight. Good luck!

RitaP
Posts: 2
Joined: Mar 2007

I was dx with same cancer 3 years ago, had chemo 2 rounds 3days each then had radation twice daily for 15 days and then 4 more rounds chemo 3 days each for 4 months , have been in remission since 2nd. round of chemo, hope your mother has as good or better luck. mine was also found while treating something else, so guess we are lucky to be found ealy on and possibly better chance to keep going on.My only problem was loss of hair, but small price to pay. Good Luck, tell Mama don't give up!!

AJL
Posts: 13
Joined: Feb 2004

I was diagnosed with Limited Small Cell Lung Cancer on my left lung via X-ray too. It was a size of a grape fruit.Like your Mom I had everything checked and the cancer did not spread to other part of my body. Limited Small Cell Lung Cancer is found in one specific area which is good because it meant the cancer did not spread. The Chemo treatment kills the cancer cell and the good cell in the body and the radiation treatment target the tumor. Depending on your Mom fitness level will determine how harsh the treatment will be. Some people can handle the treatment and other can't.I did Chemo and Radiation at the same time and after that I did preventive brain radiation. Because I'm a active runner and ran several marathron it help me tolerate the treatment. For me nothing was worse than running a marathron. After my treatment was over I ran two more marathron. So tell your Mom to stay positive and keep up her active life syle. Don't let her mope and feel sorry for herself. If you can, get her out of the house. Staying home and being depress is not good. Remember your Mom can beat this. Next month will be my 6 years since I been diagnosed. So if I can beat this so can your Mom.

Take care.

Andy

budders
Posts: 7
Joined: May 2007

Hi Margo - just wanted to let you know that I was in the same boat as your mom last year. I was 45, diagnosed in May and had 6 treatments of Cistplatin and Etopaside (?) every 21 days, 36 doses of radiation at the site (left lung, between the lobes) and brain radiation for prevention (MD Anderson protocol) I did well on the treatments (thank God) with few side effects - weight gain, a little neuropathy and constipation being the worst of it. (Of course I had hair loss but hey - didn't shave my legs for 8 months - always a silver lining to everything!) I feel great and blessed with all that has happened and the future looks good. I believe that early detection is key in treating all cancers and the fact that this cancer has not spread is great news. Update us on how your mom is doing. Keeping you and everyone touched by cancer in my prayers. Budders

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