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heres what my medical onc prescribed

victor53's picture
Posts: 97
Joined: Apr 2008

He hasnt got my pet scan results but his suggested method is
6-8 weeks of carboplatinum/taxol/erbitox
then 2 weeks rest
then 8 weeks of radiation plus carbo/ taxol
then 4 weeks rest
then surgery

but i am being treated for tuberculous so the might have to switch the chemo to TPF taxotere/platinum/5fu because with the first chemo recipe they use steroids and that might not be good with my TB medicine.

any input or experience appreciated
Thank you

soccerfreaks's picture
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

First, let's acknowledge that there is a reason why your doc gets the big bucks, along with the fact that every case is different, particularly with your complication of TB involved. And let's be hopeful that your doctor has made the right decisions based on your particular situation.

That said, in both of my cancer instances (tongue and neck in 2005 followed by same squamous cell type in right lung in January of this year) the order was reversed from what you describe... the surgery was performed and THEN radiation and chemo (just chemo following the lobectomy). The logic was and is to get what is there and then to use the rads and chemo to get any strays, if you will.

In my case as well, since they were going to replace half of my tongue, they wanted to do the surgery before radiation had an opportunity to make the tissue harder to handle by softening it up too much.

Again, though, each case is different. The important thing is that you have confidence in your doctor(s). If that is not the case, you should find doctors of whom that can be said.

Good luck!

victor53's picture
Posts: 97
Joined: Apr 2008

how do you have convidence in a doctor just a gut feeling. Well i think he was a little this is what i do no nonsence type, what youve read is old, i kind of liked the confidence, not the bed side manner type of guy i can handle that.
i have to get into treatment fast i believe its been a month since i was told and today i found out its poorly differenciated which meaans its more aggressive and my lymphnode is huge 6x3 cm and getting bigger and starting to feel warm along with my ear feelling warm

victor53's picture
Posts: 97
Joined: Apr 2008

i forgot to add it is poorly differenciated Squamos cell carcinoma of tonsil and base of tongue with a large 6x3 cm lymphnode

BugHunter's picture
Posts: 152
Joined: Oct 2007

Sounds like mine. I had 8 weeks taxol/carboplatin then two weeks off followed by 6 1/2 weeks of radiation with 6 chemo. They decided I needed no surgery after they would just watch the dead tumor for a year or so, they looked at it last month and are happy with it as is.


victor53's picture
Posts: 97
Joined: Apr 2008

bughunter and everyone thank you my email is vb53@cox.net my phone is 774 266 2777 i would love to talk to anyone and everyone especially bughunter who has gone thru i a treatment i may be going thru. I dont sleep so call any time or email me with a good time to call you. Talking is the only thing helping me thank you so much.
Victor Brown

Posts: 1560
Joined: May 2006

My tonsil cancer treatment was Nov,2004 thru Mar,2005; surgery, radiation, with synergistic chemo (cysplatin). I have been attending a head & neck survivor's group since then, and we do discuss the fact that some cases are radiation and chemo first, then surgery; while others are surgery first, then radiation and chemo.

A very important question, in my humble opinion, is: what does your 2nd opinion say? In my case, I got three opinions; since they all basically agreed on the prescribed approach, I felt quite confident in the treatment regime. If you still have questions about the prescribed approach, assertively ask that doctor to explain everything. If you can't get good answers, or you still have doubts, talk to another ENT and get the classic 2nd opinion.

Is there a survivor support group in your area? Both before and after treatment, I highly recommend that you start attending one...

Finally, Good luck, wishes, prayers to you. The plan sounds appropriate, and it will be very challenging (more than you can anticipate...), but you will find the strength that you need to go through it!

Posts: 4
Joined: Jun 2003

Tracy, I just read your reply to another post here, and you sound like an old hand! Maybe you can answer some of my questions, or get me to whomever is able to. I went through surgical, chem & radiation treatment 2003-2004 for base of tongue squamous cell, with metasteses in jaw, lymph, throat. Chemo included 5-Fu, Cysplatin & another of its' platinum cousins, followed by the new pinpoint technology radiation. I joined & participated with this board during that time and for a brief period following treatment. Then for a couple of years, I'd almost forgotten about the cancer, when other body parts started falling apart, aparently as a result of the treatments. So my questions involve medical issues that have developed afterwards. Arthritis, severe osteoporosis (my PEG was badly placed, became infected and ultimately had to be removed and my stomach surgically repaired; I consequently went through a prolonged period of starvation, developing malnutrition), joint pain, muscular pain, clavicular and carotid arteries on one side are 70-80% blocked (I'm told as a result of the radiation) and I'm having dizzy episodes/near blackouts, high blood pressure & cholesterol. I'm seeing an endocrinologist for the osteo and he will begin IV Replast treatments soon; a cardiologist has run all possible tests on main arteries and heart, heart looks good, but arteries in very bad shape. Basically everything from the waist up is clogged up; the head and neck area ones they believe to be thickened walls rather than build up so may not be repairable is what I'm being told. Anyone have similar experiences, and if so what have you done that you found effective or not? What type of doctor does one need to deal with all of these after effects, instead of several specialists and one primary who several years after seem to be beginning to think I've become some hypochondriac.

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