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4 chemo sessions and then PET scan... what to expect???

idlehunters's picture
idlehunters
Posts: 1792
Joined: Apr 2009

I am not having my 4th treatment for 2 more weeks but I was just wondering in that short amount of time will I see any changes or is that too soon to hope for something??? Just wondering if ya'll had seen any progress in that amount of time.

Jennie

Julie 44
Posts: 479
Joined: Oct 2008

Jennie,
What do you mean in changes????? You will probably have more side effects from all the drugs but you don't feel changes. You only know of changes which is determined by testing you....JULIE

snommintj's picture
snommintj
Posts: 602
Joined: Mar 2009

It's bad, they say I have cancer.

Realistically, you should expect to see no significant tumor progression. You could see some tumor regression. Don't expect a miraculous response, not that it won't happen, but it is less likely.

Something hopeful to think about. The doctors probably won't tell you. If you do have a positive tumor response they will say your tumors have shrank by a certain size. But they usually don't mention that they have also decreased in density. That decrease in density makes them more pliable and less likely to press and cause pain and tissue damage.

idlehunters's picture
idlehunters
Posts: 1792
Joined: Apr 2009

I am just finishing up my 3rd folfiri treatment tomorrow (no side effects from any treatment as of yet... knock on wood) My onc told me after 4th treatment they would do another PET scan and see what our OPTIONS are then. That threw me for a loop because in the beginning he said I had NO options. Now he is talking a different tune and he ain't even seen an updated PET. My CEA levels dropped from 75 to 65 after first treatment. I guess I am just confused. 2 opinions... both saying palative care only.... and now 1 says possible ablations, surgery and maybe remission without even seeing whats in me at this point,,, what???

luv3jay's picture
luv3jay
Posts: 534
Joined: May 2009

I actually had a wonderful response to chemo after the first 4 neoadjuvant cycles. The primary tumor in the rectum disappeared completely. Of the two tumors in my liver, one disappeared and the other one shrank considerably, according to the PET scan. However, upon doing the liver resection, they actually found 2 smaller tumors that were removed as well, that didn't show up on the PET. Of course, I had to wait 6 weeks between the 4th cycle and surgery, so perhaps those two small ones grew during that time. Anyway, good luck on your PET and I hope you have the same great response that I did!

eric38's picture
eric38
Posts: 588
Joined: May 2009

Something hopeful to think about. There`s nothing for sure yet but after only 3.5 months months my doctor thinks there might be a good chance I am already N.E.D. He is giving me three more treatments before he scans me just to make sure. I didn`t know it could happen that fast but apparently it can. I am prepared for the other possibility but I am confident that if I am not NED I will show significant improvement. I trust my onc and he has been doing this for 21 years. He is a brain and probably would not make those kind of statements unless he was pretty confident but he is judging by my response to treatment so far so it is just an educated guess at this point. Regardless, there is the possibility of significant improvement in a short amount of time.

Eric ( : . )

snommintj's picture
snommintj
Posts: 602
Joined: Mar 2009

I had a semi-miraculous response to my chemo when I first started it. I went from a "2-3 month with no hope of surgery" prognosis to a "we think you might have a shot" to a your "NED, today". So miraculous responses are possible, in fact, I need another with my most recent recurrence. But I'm not expecting one, I'll sure take one if I get it though.

mom_2_3
Posts: 965
Joined: Nov 2008

Jennie,

After 4 treatments my liver mets shrunk between 30% and 40%. After my scan I waited for a copy of the CD and compared the scan to my original scan. I told my husband that the largest met in my liver had gone down about 40% and he said "do you think you're a radiologist?" He was laughing at me. When I got the results of the scan the measurements of the largest met were in the report as well as the old measurements and it was exactly 40% shrinkage on that met. I told my husband perhaps radiology was in my future as a career... :)

So it's hard to say what you will experience but I knew as I was doing treatment that my mets were getting smaller. At resection (right after my 5th treatment) I was told that the largest met had 90% necrosis.

I pray you get good results!!!

Amy

idlehunters's picture
idlehunters
Posts: 1792
Joined: Apr 2009

amy... what is necrosis???? Thank you all for your comments. I am just really hoping I see some progress. That is 2 weeks away.... I am soooooooooooo anxious.

Jennie

mom_2_3
Posts: 965
Joined: Nov 2008

My doctor told me that necrosis meant that the tumor was dead/dying. So 90% of the cells in the removed tumor weren't movin' anymore. Yahoo!

I think the hardest time during my treatment was that first 2 months as we didn't know if treatment was working or not. As we got news that treatment was going the right way a burden was lifted off of my shoulders. Keep your chin up!!

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