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Zevalin? And it' use after chemo

Posts: 3
Joined: Jan 2010

HI I had recently posted that I was "Newly Diagnosed with Follicular Lymphoma" (32 yrs old, stage 3, NO bone marrow involvement) Well I did 3 rounds of chemo.... Benadamustine, Velcade, Rituxin. And when I was initially diagnosed I was told I would do 6 rounds of this and then do once a month of Rituxan for the next 2 years to keep it "at bay" Well went for my PET scan and EVERYTHING IS GONE! THANK U GOD! Dr. wanted me to do one more round which I am currently doing (this is the 4th round) and then he said he will treat me with a one time infusion of Zevalin. I have looked up Zevalin but was not sure of side effects. And I see a lot of people have done it in place of chemo as a treatment option. I am just curious how effective this one time infusion will be at keeping it at bay since initially i was suppose to do Rituxan for 2 years... and now I am just doing ONE infusion and then WAITING to see if it comes back---guess I just need to know how effective it is and if anyone has experience with doing it after chemo and what side effects there were to it. THANKS!

Posts: 9
Joined: Jan 2010

Hi Erica,

Zevalin can be very effective after chemo. I was diagnosed in 2002 and was refractory to two types of chemo that I took. In the nick of time, Zevalin was approved and is what saved me - I've been healthy since September 2002! That was way before Zevalin was approved for use in combination with chemo, but it's effectively what I did.

You probably know that Zevalin is one of two approved radioimmunotherapy (RIT) drugs. As I am sure you know, no one can predict an individual's outcome to any treatment, but if you look at the studies, there's not a single treatment that shows the durability of remissions that RIT can produce. And the good news is that you don't have to stay in treatment for two years!

As for maintenance therapy, some concerns have recently surfaced about increased risk of infection.

There is a lot of information on my website about RIT, all of which has been vetted by medical professionals. The site is http://www.lymphomabook.com/RIT.html

RIT is easy to take, side effects are minimal. Blood counts decrease but come back up in a few weeks.

Good luck - and sending you healthy hugs!

Posts: 3
Joined: Jan 2010

THANKS Betsy--- I still feel so new to all of this so, any info is good. Someone told me I will be getting one "trial" round to make sure the radioactive part can process thru my body and then I will go back and get the "real" thing.... Does that sound right? You seem to have been in recovery for quite a while. What did u have exactly if I can ask? I am only 32 so I am just anxious to STAY in REMISSION for a LONG LONG TIME! Thanks again for your response!

hilde451's picture
Posts: 229
Joined: Oct 2009

Hi Erica: My name is Hilde and I have Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma , follicular, stage 4 with bone marrow involvement. I did 8 rounds of chemo and then Dec. 23, I did the Zevalin.
You are right they do one first to see if it goes to the right places.They check that with a scan. Then they do the other one a week later. I also was really worried.
Now my blood levels are really really very low. So we will see where it ends up.
I did read where it is only 30% of the people that go into remission. After I did it. I just was hoping the percentage would be much higher. But we can only hope for the best.
I wish you all the best with all of this.

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