Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

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Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

by dorisdaughter on Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:00 AM

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My mother has recently been diagnosed with recurrent lung cancer. She was originally diagnosed in 2004 with small cell lung cancer which responded successfully to chemoradiation therapy. Now, she has been diagnosed with NSCLC, stage IIIB, and we have begun treatment with Tarceva as a first line. Has anyone else out there had experience with Tarceva as a front line therapy? Also, how quickly should she begin to see symptoms such as the rash? She has been taking for exactly one week now and of course we are on pins and needles. By the way, Doris is almost 84 years old and still works every single day. What a trooper.

Thank you for your response.

RE: Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

by tifiebean on Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:00 AM

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On 1/18/2008 dorisdaughter wrote:

My mother has recently been diagnosed with recurrent lung cancer. She was originally diagnosed in 2004 with small cell lung cancer which responded successfully to chemoradiation therapy. Now, she has been diagnosed with NSCLC, stage IIIB, and we have begun treatment with Tarceva as a first line. Has anyone else out there had experience with Tarceva as a front line therapy? Also, how quickly should she begin to see symptoms such as the rash? She has been taking for exactly one week now and of course we are on pins and needles. By the way, Doris is almost 84 years old and still works every single day. What a trooper.

Thank you for your response.

Hi there,

 My father has stage IV lung cancer and has been on Tarceva as first line therapy for about 4 months. We are really lucky as he has been responding really well to treatment. His primary tumor has shrunk by about 50% so far and he lives a totally normal life. There are certain characteristics such as female, non-smoker, EGFR mutation, and Adenocardinoma  for which Tarceva is particularly effective. He developed the rash after about 3 days on treatment but this is very different for everyone. In fact, some people don't develop a rash at all and it's working for them. Best of luck!

RE: Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

by Rosalind on Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:00 AM

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Hi,

My mother was on Tarceva as a first line of treatment-- part of a study for Dana Farber.  Unfortunately, it did not work for her.  She never got the rash, which seems to be an indicator that Tarceva is working.  Good luck to you and your mother.   Roz

RE: Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

by Chessie on Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:00 AM

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On 1/18/2008 dorisdaughter wrote:

My mother has recently been diagnosed with recurrent lung cancer. She was originally diagnosed in 2004 with small cell lung cancer which responded successfully to chemoradiation therapy. Now, she has been diagnosed with NSCLC, stage IIIB, and we have begun treatment with Tarceva as a first line. Has anyone else out there had experience with Tarceva as a front line therapy? Also, how quickly should she begin to see symptoms such as the rash? She has been taking for exactly one week now and of course we are on pins and needles. By the way, Doris is almost 84 years old and still works every single day. What a trooper.

Thank you for your response.

Doris certainly is a a trooper!  How wonderful.  I am being treated by Tarceva 150 as first line for NSCLC stage IV.  I have been on it almost 15 months.  The tumor in my left lung is no longer active.  The primary tumor in the right lung has shrunk 57%.  It was about 7-10 days before I got the rash and side effects.  Tarceva is a great drug.  Everyone is different in the response time.  But don't give up.  Give it a chance to work.  You didn't say what dose she was on.  The higher the dose, the more apt to get the side effects quickly.  I've had to drop my dose to 100, then up to 125, and go back to the 150 due to the side effects.  But I am also still working and doing everything  I've always done.  I'm 60.  So hang in there.   Doris sounds like she's got the drive to do it and beat it again.  God Bless you both.  Nancy

 

RE: Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

by 500smwhr on Sun Jan 20, 2008 12:00 AM

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I am on Tarceva since 2004. Stage IV NSCLC, with a prognosis for surviving one year. It's been almost four.  I never got a rash from the Tarceva, and I don't think the rash indicates whether it's working or not. All medicines have side effects. Some people get them, and some people don't, but that is NOT an indication whether or not the medicine is working, it's only an indication that some people don't get the side effects and some people do.

RE: Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

by dorisdaughter on Mon Jan 21, 2008 12:00 AM

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Thank you so much for your wonderful story and for the optimism you give us all. Our best to you in your journey and our prayers for your continued progress. Dorisdaughter

RE: Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

by Nancy3 on Wed Jan 23, 2008 12:00 AM

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I was diagnosed with NSLC stage !V in August 07 and have been on Tarceva since. The rash came 1 week later, loss of appetite and 20 pounds. No diarrhea to speak of. Have regained my strength in the last month and trying to get life back on track. My lung tumor shrunk 60% by October and all lymph nodes in my chest area were back to normal. The last scan this month showed no further shrinkage of the lung tumor but the liver mets are shrinking and the pleural effusion, atelectasis and consolidation of my left lung has cleared and the right lung effusion, etc is smaller. My doctor says the tumor may not shrink any more just become inactive. I also have mets to the whole spinal column and am taking monthly IV Zometa which has some side effects of its own. I recently have numbness in my thigh which may be due to the mets to the bone compressing a nerve. Tarceva is being used more and more for front line because its a targeted drug so it doesn't damage the other cells. My doctor says I have responded the best to those he has treated. I am also taking a slew of supplements and have a great prayer support group. God is definitely at work!

RE: Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

by Sterling on Fri Jan 25, 2008 12:00 AM

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My father has been on Tarceva for the past 2 years now and thankfully doing very well. I remember he had some stomach problems at the beginning. All that went away after his system got used to the medicaton.I think he had a little redness after a couple weeks on the medicine. The redness comes and goes and to tell you the truth I can barely notice it. He tells me he has come to think of the Tarceva as a vitamin pill. His attitude is great and he is trying to view the lung cancer like a chronic condition. He received his diagnosis 3 years ago, he was told he was in late stage and it was inoperable. At present his latest scan showed his cancer is stable . For anyone out there just trying Tarceva try to work through the side effects, it really is an amazing drug.

RE: Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

by michellelee on Sun Nov 30, 2008 12:00 AM

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My mother was in ICU for almost two months on 10 liters of oxygen.  They told us her lung areas were filling with fluid from a cold.  They drained it almost everyday with a big needle finally sending it to the Mayo.  It kept comeing back unknow.  So we private planed her to Denver Co.  Where in July 08 we were told it was stage IV lung cancer.  Placed a Tube in her back for draining it easier and said you prob have about 3 to 6 months even on chemo.  When we got back to Wyoming 3 days later she was in the hospital again for two more weeks on haveing 300 cc's of fluid still draining out.   When she was finally feeling some what stronger her  cancer doctor came down told us 168.8 was her cancer activity.  He put her on Tarceva instead of chemo and said to believe in god and never give up hope.  With in a week she was down too 2 liters of oxygen and eatting her nose broke out in a rash and it stayed like that for about two weeks a normal side effect.  3 months later her blood test showed 1.6 activiaty.  Shes 64 years old never smoked it seems to be workin.  She's been off oxygen since the hosptial and leads a normal life again.  Tarceva has been my mothers only treatment so far.  God bless

RE: Recurrent Lung Cancer and Tarceva

by minlu001 on Sun Jan 02, 2011 06:09 AM

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How is your father doing now? My brother has stage IV lung cancer with bone mets. He just had Tarceva for a month. We don't know if this will work wonders. He does seem to respond to the drug right now.

Thanks,

 

 

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