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What are the Steps for Treatment for Ovarian Cancer Stage 3?

Posts: 1
Joined: Nov 2010

A very good friend of mine told me she has ovarian cancer stage 3. They said it has spread to her lymph nodes. They prescribed her hexamethylamine, which is an oral chemo med. I find it strange that the doctor has not made plans to remove her ovary and the tumor. Is this normal? I am very worried about her and I want to help her and advise her the best that I can. Any input is appreciated.

Thank you.

Hissy_Fitz's picture
Posts: 1869
Joined: Sep 2009

Do you know where she is being treated? It is very common in late stage OC to do chemo prior to surgery. It often shrinks the tumor(s) and makes for a more successful de-bulking surgery. As far as I know, Hexamethylamine is most often used as a second-line treatment. Here is some info I found....

In the United States, the initial treatment of ovarian cancer is now in transition, with most patients receiving primary therapy with drugs that contain platinum and taxane compounds (e.g., cisplatin, carboplatin, paclitaxel); however, other drugs, such as "mustards" (e.g., melphalan) and anthracyclines (e.g., doxorubicin) also show first-line activity in ovarian cancer. The dose, timing, and choice of chemotherapies are determined by factors such as the patient's type and stage of ovarian cancer, her body's response to and recovery from chemotherapy, and her health status.

At the present time, only two drugs - hexamethylamine (Hexalen®, altretamine) and topotecan hydrochloride (Hycamtin™) - have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use as second-line, or "salvage," agents in ovarian cancer (for example, metastatic ovarian cancer patients in whom initial or subsequent chemotherapy with paclitaxel and cisplatin has failed).

Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2010

Rachelle, I am so sorry to hear about your friend . . . I have been in treatment for a year with stage 4 clear cell. I had surgery first and I have tried two different "types" of chemo since. I will be starting a clinical trial tomorrow with Suniitinib Malate -- it has been approved by the FDA for a type of stomach and kidney cancer, but is being studied for the treatment of persistent, recurrect clear cell ovarian cancer. I guess what I have discovered through my journey is that every one of us is treated individually, what works for one may not work for another. My best to you and your friend. Roni

grammy to bella
Posts: 16
Joined: Dec 2010

I am currently in my 5th year of battling stage 3C OC.Although the dr. at Cleveland Clinic suspected advanced disease, it was my understanding the staging was done once he could see how far the cancer had spread thru surgery and lab testing of tumors and lymph nodes. The debulking reduced everything to a microscopic level. Even though I have had 4 reoccurrences, they have all been small tumors and reacted very well to the varios chemo treatments.Has your friend had a second onc look over records. Maybe it's just me, but I would want surgery a.s.a.p. Good luck to you

Posts: 9
Joined: Dec 2010

I was diagnosed with Stage 3 Ovarian Cancer that also spread to my lymph nodes. I had surgery first and then a month later I began a very intense round of chemo that lasted about 3 months.
I have been cancer free since March 2009

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