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Diagnosed with recurrence

Posts: 1
Joined: May 2013

I was just diagnosed with a recurrent esophageal cancer.  The tumor is a bit lower than the original site.  I am not a candidate for surgery because of poor lung function.  Will be starting chemo again next week.  Last time was 9/2011 with 5 weeks of chemo and 27 successive radiation treatments.  The radiation was the worst and I'm glad I don't have to go through that again.  Not looking forward to starting the chemo again.  I am told this will be a 'forever' medication.  Anyone else have this experience?

paul61's picture
Posts: 1268
Joined: Apr 2010

I am very sorry to hear of your recurrence. It is something that all of us survivors think about every day. Has your tumor been tested for HER 2 expression? If it is HER 2 positive perhaps Herceptin might be helpful. There are of course some clinical trials for recurrent esophageal cancer.

Here is an example: http://www.cancer.gov/clinicaltrials/search/view?cdrid=515093&version=Patient&protocolsearchid=6317958.

This particular trial uses Avastin and there is some hemorrhage risk with that medication, but then all chemotherapy drugs have some risk.

Finding the right oncologist that supports your objectives in the fight against this disease and a positive attitude are critical.

Sending positive thoughts your way for a successful treatment plan.

 Best Regards,

Paul Adams

McCormick, South Carolina

DX 10/2009 T2N1M0  Stage IIB - Ivor Lewis Surgery  12/3/2009 - Post Surgery Chemotherapy 2/2009 – 6/2009

Cisplatin, Epirubicin, 5 FU - Three Year Survivor

Christine135's picture
Posts: 71
Joined: May 2012

Hi lovelylily-

 My husband Mike was originally diagnosed on April 5th, 2012, one day before his 57th birthday a tumor was found at the base of his esophagus where it met the stomach. The tumor also tested positive for HER2, the most aggressive form of breast cancer. He went on a study going through both chemo and radiation which include Herceptin and on August 21, 2012, he underwent surgery to remove his entire esophagus and pull his stomach up to make the new one. Surgery was extremely hard but he pushed though and was making good strides. A few days before his 58th birthday in April of this year, we were told the cancer had returned at the connection site. There are also lymph nodes that showed up in the PET scan on both sides of his neck, in the lining of his lungs and around his heart. Surgery is out and radiation is also not possible because of all the scar tissue from the original radiation. 

We just started last week chemo called Folfox so we will see how this all goes. He has lost so much weight as he now weighs 113 pounds and sleeps most of the day now. He says he feels like he weighs 500 pounds when he moves so he pretty much stays on the couch. it is one day at a time so hang in there and best of luck to you.

Please stay in touch on how your chemo goes and prayers are with you.


tcaba's picture
Posts: 41
Joined: Nov 2012

I too have just been diagnosed with recurrent EC.  Having been clean since December 2010, that is a pretty crumy bit of news.  I'm seeing a new oncologist who is more specialized next Thursday so I don't know what to expect right now.  Hopefully a magic bullet, huh.  My gastroenterologist and pathologist  were well challenged to diagnose even obtaining the surgical slides and path report from 2 years ago.  Turns out to be identical cellular growth and very well differentiated so at least it is slow growing.


I'll keep you in my prayers.

ualgal's picture
Posts: 9
Joined: Feb 2013

We are wondering if you had an esophagectomy. My hubby is NED after the initial Chemo and 28 days of Proton radiation, He will have an EUS at the 3 month mark to determine if any active cells. He doesn't want to have surgery, even though we're told it's his best chance for survival. He is 73.
Thanks for ur reply.

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