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micktissue's picture
Posts: 430
Joined: Dec 2009

What stage were people diagnosed and what were you told in terms of prognosis?



delnative's picture
Posts: 450
Joined: Aug 2009

I was Stage III SCC of the right tonsil with one lymph node involved, though the local ENT who removed my tumor didn't tell me what stage I was.
When I asked him what my chances were, he told me, sounding none too convincing, "50-50."
I wound up going to Johns Hopkins, where my new ENT told me (after getting a tissue sample from my tumor) that my cancer was caused by HPV. He told me that the five-year survival rate for cases like mine was roughly 90 percent, which was a great comfort for me as I went into treatment.
That was 15 months ago. I did have to have a modified radical neck dissection after my course of chemo and radiation, but I had a PET scan last month and I'm 100 percent cancer free thus far.
Good luck!

--Jim in Delaware

Hondo's picture
Posts: 6643
Joined: Apr 2009

My first time was a stage 0 small as a dime it was found because I had a little bleeding in the Nasal passageway and could not hear our of my right ear, my ENT found it and set me up to see an cancer dr, I had a 98% cure rate. Second time was a stage IV and spread in to the right side of the neck, Rad& Chemo 50/50 on cure rate. Third time all they could do was offer chemo cure rate nill. At this point put it all in Gods hands 4 ½ years ago. Still here.

Mick don’t let the doctors prognosis worry you, they are only Human, God designed the body and knows how to repair it, I believe in my doctors and believe that God will give them just the right treatment needed.

Posts: 101
Joined: Jun 2008


I suggest trying not to get too caught up in the "numbers". A lot of what's on the internet is out-of-date or not applicable to your particular situation. A lot of what you "hear" is plainly incorrect. Nonetheless, like you, I asked. They said:

* Dr. Positive, the ENT...the clinical evidence is that you are a stage I and have an 85% prognosis.
* Dr. Moderate, the MO...stage IVA, conservatively a 50% probability of remission.
* Dr. Negative, the RO...stage III, this is not an exact science so I can't give you a percent but do know that we should throw everything we've got at it.

They agreed that the first shot is the best shot. Also, I asked a second MO, she said "nobody is 100% and nobody is 0%, let's have at it."

I wish you the best of health. Rich

micktissue's picture
Posts: 430
Joined: Dec 2009

Thanks for that Rich. TO hear my Dr say I am "stage IV by definition" was hard, but I get what he's saying. Perhaps stage IV statistically is worse prognostically, but it doesn't mean the end. Unfortunately I do sometimes go to the end and I get very scared.

I will have surgery to remove the nodes in my neck and PET scans came back negative for any mets, so that's good. Hopefully the rads and chemo will kill any micro-mets that are likely traveling down the lymph chain. I'll keep everyone posted.

Thanks to everyone for being here - it does help.



cwcad's picture
Posts: 117
Joined: Nov 2009

When I was told of my cancer it was in February 07. I can honestly say that I did not get a percentage given to me as far as survival rates when first diagnosed. Being a traveler of the construction trade I was making ready to trek to Alaska to begin a new season. I told the doctor same. He said I could go to work if I wanted to go. He did, however, say most emphatically that if I did go to work for six months that I would not complete the season for the cancer had progressed to far to be left untreated.

I had never seen my ENT doctor prior to my diagnosis. He took one look and gave me his opinion. Ominus though it was I am glad for the frank and candid treatment. I never looked for any percentage of recovery rate from my cancer while in treatment. All I know for sure is that I am here. Another thing that I know for sure is the fact that I am going to continue to blow away all the statistics and percentages or ... well you know what can happen. I will play my hand out to the end. Might as well it is the only one I was dealt.

I have a CT/Pet scan scheduled for Tuesday the 12th of January, 2010. Hopefully I am still cancer free at the end of three years and going into the fourth year.

ratface's picture
Posts: 1319
Joined: Aug 2009

It dosen't matter, you only have one direction to go. I was stage IV

My first Rad-man told me my glass was 7/8 full (I don't have a clue what that means)but it sounds rather pleasing.

My first ENT led me to believe the negative result of my Fine needle aspiration and then on the day of surgery for biopsy told me he knew all along it was cancer because it always is when the lymph is that big. We have this conversation about sixty seconds before they wheel me into surgery. He is no longer my ENT. (I should have strangled him on the spot.)

My Chemo-Doc was very explicit in repeating over and over on our first appt. how often this cancer comes back. (she is no longer my chemo doctor)

My current Rad-doc just says he isn't GOD.

My current ENT told me she dosen't think mine is comming back and I will be seeing her for many years to come.

If you ask enough people you will eventually get the answer you want to hear but I still only have one direction to go.

carolinagirl67's picture
Posts: 153
Joined: Jul 2009

Good Morning,

My husband was stage IV, and when you first hear that it sounds like you have no hope but let me tell you cancer can be beat! Stay positive and do not allow evil to enter your thoughts and emotions. You WILL survive this! Peace be with you. Donna

SASH's picture
Posts: 399
Joined: Apr 2006

I was dx stage IV with no metastasis. I asked about rads only for treatment before surgery and told 40% survival, with chemo about 75%. Also told 85% chance of coming back in the first 2 years. That was Sept of 1999. I have been NED since May 1, 2000, which was the date of my surgery where they were going to cut out 85-90% of my tongue but only found scar tissue and dead cancer cells.

fishingirl's picture
Posts: 188
Joined: Nov 2009

That is so great, Sash!!

Tricia02's picture
Posts: 130
Joined: Mar 2009

Hi Mick I was stage 2, grade 2 nasal septum carcinoma and was told by my MDT that I had a 70% chance of survival. I remember thinking crap, there's a 30% chance i will die! I was treated at the Royal Marsden Hospital in Surrey, UK - which was the first cancer hospital in the world and is still a place of excellence, with the UK's leading research establishment, Cancer Research UK. I knew I was in the best hand possible but was still in terror. They told me their first chance at treatment is their best, therefore they would "throw the kitchen sink" at my tumour, I didn't argue and went along with everything they suggested. This was in August 05 and my life is wonderful. Looking back I never envisaged a life at all. So I am one happy bunny to have such a happy and fulfilled life with my partner Nick and son Christopher. My life is so much more enriched since cancer, in ways that were once beyond my wildest dreams. Good luck in your journey.

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