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Looking for information on Small Cell Neuroendocrine Carcinoma of Esophagus with METs to Liver

Posts: 10
Joined: Nov 2011


I just joined this group in the hopes of finding out some information that will help me understand what my family is about to endure. On October 10 my 66 yr old mother in law had an endoscopy becuase of a gastro pain...they thought she had reflux. (She has a terrible pain in her chest that she felt starting in the summer...she would take Tums but nothing helped. She also had bouts of diarrhea since that time.

Well, with the endoscopy, they found a tumor in her esophagus. My father in law said "all the cells surrounding the tumor are dead...so no surgery." A biopsy of her esohpageal tumor came back as Neuroendocrine carcinoma. The doctor then did full body scans. The scans also showed METs to her liver. A liver biopsy was done. The results of this biopsy showed that it was of the same type of cancer as the esophagus, but it also added that it is "small cell" type. What does all of this mean? SSC is a scary thing in all of the reading I have done online. And, from what I read, it seems like small cell neuroendocrince carcinoma of the esophagus is extremely rare <2.8% of all EC!

The liver biopsy results were received this past Monday (11/14) and on Thursday (11/17) she was admitted to U Penn for 3 days of chemo (not sure of exactly what she was given...hubby is giving me the summary that he gets from his dad). She was supposed to be 'hooked up' for 6 hours on Thursday, then 1 hr on Fri & Sat. Unfortunately, when they went to start it all, her kidneys were not up to par. (not sure what was off -- she said some levels were not what they should be). She was told her kidneys were aged beyond her actual age so they would be switching the treatment meds to something else. So, her 6 hour treatment was Friday and her 2- 1 hour treatments were yesterday and today. She was discharged, but goes back tomorrow for some shot to regulate her white blood cell count. She then goes back in 3 weeks for another round of treatment.

Does anyone have any experience with something like this? My in-laws and husband all said the doctor is optomistic...saying they think they will get good results from the chemo. However, based on what I read online, it seems that small cell cancers are not able to be beaten...that they recur no matter what course of treatment. Is small cell neuroendocrine carcinoma a unique circumstance? Or are they misinformed?



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