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My mother was diagnosed with lung cancer and then brain mets

bamdh
Posts: 3
Joined: Jan 2017

Hello,
I'm from Bangkok, Thailand and 2 years ago, my mother was diagnosed with lung cancer. (The information I'm writing might not be in detailed). After surgery and chemotherapy, she did a PET scan where it showed no signs left of cancer, we were so relieved. Unfortunately, after 6 months, with a follow up of PET scan, a mass in the brain was found, where then she was diagnosed with brain metastasis (from the lung). She went through surgery and whole brain radiation which reduced the size. It went well for about 2-3 months until she was not able to move her left leg and started to have spasms. Did an MRI, it showed that the tumour grew a bit in size but the cause of the spasm was actually the side effect of the whole brain surgery. She went through another surgery, which helped only a bit because the doctor does not want to cause any further damage. (her left arm also had spasms as well) this causes us to hire a personal nurse to help her with everything since she cannot move her left side. We tried chemotheraphy since radiation does not work anymore, but it does not work since it still grew little by little. Currently, we found a chemo drug which is really expensive, that seems to work cause 2 MRIs showed no signs of an increase (a bit of decrease as well I may say). Nevertheless, my mother is still struggling because she cant help herself in anything, can only be on wheelchair and in Thailand, there's not much facilities for the disables. Furthermore, the spasms still occur despite the drugs she took everyday to suppress them. 

I just wanted to write this for anyone out there who can relate because my family are really having a hard time. My dad quit working at his office (he owns it though) and try to be with her at all times. I can feel that she's giving up, she is only truly laughing when my nephew visits (4 times a week) and when her friends came by. She has occasional mood swings and always wonder whether she will live to the day I graduate from uni. Anyone who's reading this and suffering the same thing (in thailand there's not really much support group) I just want you to write anything to encourage my mother at this point, we would be really greatful, just to cheer her up and that she needs to fight.

Ps. We read and heard that at this point there's only few months or 2 years max.. I just want to know if there are cases that have longer survival rates.

Thank you :( 

LimboLivin
Posts: 6
Joined: May 2017

I just joined this forum and haven't a clue what the medical care in Thailand is like however, for brain mets from some other primary cancer, lung in your mother's case, there are a few different approaches based on size and number of mets. A very large met would most likely be surgically removed then possibly she'd receive whole brain radiation to try to eliminate/prevent any new mets or, if mets were but a few, gammaknife would be a better option although even multiple mets can be treated with GammaKnife, performed by a team of neurosurgeon, physicist and radiation oncologist. GK treatment is painless.

Also, to answer your question re: prognosis for survival, I personally know two patients alive after ten and eleven years and myself at three years although my prognosis was a year from diagnosis. I hope this helps and your mother is in better spirits now.

 

 

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