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Has anyone been treated at MD Anderson?

Posts: 2
Joined: Jan 2009

My mother was just diagnosed with stomach cancer. I was told that MD Anderson was the best and I was wondering if anyone had gone there or if anyone could recommend a place for treatment? My mother was not comfortable with our local oncology surgeon that was recommended and he was supposedly the best according to many of the doctors that saw her while she was in the hospital. That leaves me no choice but to look out of town for a facility and I have no idea what that entails at this point because I am still waiting for an appointment for an evaluation. I am so scared that by the time she finally gets seen by MD Anderson her cancer may have spread even further... any suggestions? Please help I can't sleep, eat and I am feeling overwhelmed I hope she will be able to handle everything that comes with the treatments and surgery I am so scared...

Posts: 37
Joined: Sep 2008

I'm answering you here on your own thread instead of the Scissor's but will address my view for some of the questions you posted there.

Unfortunately, I can't comment on the hospital you went to, I am out of the Midwest area.

I think the ordeal of dealing with cancer was harder on my loved ones then it was for me. On your side of things you have to try and keep a strong face and be supportive and hopeful for those of us with cancer even though it is tearing you up inside. As cancer patients we are 'allowed' to be emotional, but the caregivers are not. As my oncologist says, "The whole family has cancer and has to live with it. Not just the person diagnosed."

As your login name states all you can do is pray. Anything can happen, for good or ill, but always pray for the best. I certainly wish your mom well, as I constantly pray for any person dealing with cancer.

Obviously the treatment can vary upon the location of the tumor as well as the progression of the cancer, so no one can really explain what to expect, only what we may have gone through.

To me the biggest hurdle was when I was allowed to try and start eating again, because I was so optimistic about the event. As it turned out, it was the worst part of the whole experience. Except for the initial diagnosis I suppose.

Again my cancer was at the junction of esophagus and stomach, and I had a total gastrectomy. I was in the hospital 12 days, the standard heart bypass surgery is usually out in 5 days. I'd like to say it's not going to be bad, but it will be an uphill battle.

Posts: 17
Joined: Jan 2009

I am Scissors' girlfriend and I want to thank you for sharing your story.
I am praying you do well now that your surgery is over.
He may be facing something similar.
Today he had an MRI to see if the cancer has spread to the liver. If it has, he is in stage 4. If not, he will have surgery, then chemo/rads.
We all have to stick together. I am very glad to have found this board.
I myself had breast cancer 4 years ago and am a survivor (lucky that it was discovered early) It's very hard.
Thanks again. We will be following your progress.

Posts: 8
Joined: Jan 2009

AllIcandoisPray, you don't say where you're from. While MD Anderson is rated "best" it's not clear what that means. I'm sure that they have people with expertise in the less common cancers (and stomach cancer is on the decline in the US), and have any number of clinical trials going on. There may be other very well regarded cancer centers near you.

Here's one list: http://www.cancerlinksusa.com/centers.htm Note that this one puts Sloane-Kittering in NYC at the top of the list

Here's another list: http://cancer.about.com/od/treatmentoptions/tp/tophospitals.htm This one has MD Anderson at the top.

Finally, here's list from the National Cancer Institute of NCI-designated cancer centers: https://cissecure.nci.nih.gov/factsheet/FactsheetSearch.aspx?FSType=1.2 Note that some of these places do research only. But of these places that take patients, I fiugre you can be certain that they are more up-to-date and focused on cancer care.

Good luck! My thoughts are with you and your mother.

Bstrange's picture
Posts: 87
Joined: Feb 2009

They are the best!

A Lee Carter
Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2009

As a patient at MD Anderson, I have enquired as to the # 1 rating. There are several factors and statistics that are used to determine this rating. I believe the dominant factor(after talking with various doctors) is the number of ongoing studies and completed research studies. MD Anderson wins a high number of reasearch grants.
Another factor is the number of patient services available along with service hours.

I have been diagnosed with incurrable stomach cancer has it has spread to other areas. However after going weeks and weeks without being able to eat. After only one treatment of chemo I saw improvement. After the second treatment I was able to swallow anything again.

For weeks I felt like dieing was the only solution but, now that I can go out with the family and have a meal and enjoy their presence there is hope.

Inspite of a gloomy diagnosis there are people who keep on keep'n on.

Good luck, I talk with people from all over the US and the world on my visits to MD Anderson, Perhaps we'll run into each other

Posts: 2
Joined: Oct 2009

i know that if we want our loved people to be cured , we must try our best. the cost is not the most important. however i come from Vietnam and i don't have much money . our family can afford only 200000$ at most ( including all our assets)how can we come to MD Anderson. I nearly lose my hope

Posts: 2
Joined: Jan 2010

My husband is also getting his treatment at MD Anderson. They have been awesome...the entire place seems so full of hope, even though all their patients are dealing with cancer. After the first chemo treatment, his cancer markers showed good decreases, and after the 2nd treatment, scans revealed tumors and mets were shrinking...better than we had dared hope!
When he was first diagnosed, we were not sure he would make it back out of the hospital he seemed so sick. He still has some bad days, but we have hope...he can be the miracle, the statistic that beats this monster.
MDA has great patient resources, and can treat most any aspect of health, including mental health that can take a beating with this diagnosis. My aunt was receiving treatment here and lives in Mississippi, and we have also talked to people from all over. Where ever you go, keep praying, keep hoping, and keep fighting. God Bless you and your family.

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Posts: 1
Joined: Dec 2007

I wish all the best for your mother and your family.
Regarding MD Anderson, My Sister went there 3 months ago for treatment of uterine cancer which was spread partially to the stomach and liver, their appointment took long time and their choice of chemo was very bad and cause bad results.
We went there with high hopes after we read a lot about them and about their trials in the internet, but now I can say the last few months we spent there was the worst period on our battle with cancer.

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