Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

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Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

by cecgrove on Sat Apr 19, 2008 12:00 AM

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My husband was diagnosed with rectal cancer stage 4 in 02/07.  After 3 surgeries (1 was a complete miss with big chunks of good lung tissues emoved but the small sub-cm tumor left in the lung), radiation and chemo, we thought that he would be cancer free.  After recovering from his last lung surgery end Feb 08, he had a scan this week and found that there were 3 new lung tumor nodules that grew within the last 60 days during his surgery and recovery.  We were devastated and we both felt that this is it.  We had 4 kids under 13 years old.  He's now going out doing things he want to do but didn't have a chance because of the responsibilities, probably thinking that he is going to die soon.   I don't want to live in fear and am losing sleep every night thinking that he will be gone soon.  Can you share with us your experience and bring us some hope.

Also I have to say the experience with using different famous institutions and doctors have not been very pleasant.  They were unwillling to work with each other in the  best interest of the patient.

God bless!

Cecilia 

 

RE: Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

by Jeffy on Mon Apr 21, 2008 12:00 AM

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On 4/19/2008 cecgrove wrote:

My husband was diagnosed with rectal cancer stage 4 in 02/07.  After 3 surgeries (1 was a complete miss with big chunks of good lung tissues emoved but the small sub-cm tumor left in the lung), radiation and chemo, we thought that he would be cancer free.  After recovering from his last lung surgery end Feb 08, he had a scan this week and found that there were 3 new lung tumor nodules that grew within the last 60 days during his surgery and recovery.  We were devastated and we both felt that this is it.  We had 4 kids under 13 years old.  He's now going out doing things he want to do but didn't have a chance because of the responsibilities, probably thinking that he is going to die soon.   I don't want to live in fear and am losing sleep every night thinking that he will be gone soon.  Can you share with us your experience and bring us some hope.

Also I have to say the experience with using different famous institutions and doctors have not been very pleasant.  They were unwillling to work with each other in the  best interest of the patient.

God bless!

Cecilia 

 


Hi Cecilia,

My name is Jeff and am 39 years old.  I was diagnosed with a rectal tumor in nov 05.  When they scanned me they also saw 50 small nodules in my lungs at the time but did not think it was cancer because there were so many.  I had the tumor removed and did 3 months of follow up chemo then rescanned.  The spots did not grow and they were too small to do a needle biopsy so the doc wanted to rescan after 2 months.  This next scan showed some minor growth but still too small to needle biopsy.  I chose to have a lung biopsy (surgery) instead of waiting for them spots to get large enough to needle biopsy and sure enough they found that there were cancerous.  So now my stage 3 cancer just jumped to a stage 4 terminal disease.  I wanted to hit it hard so we did 6 months of folfox treatment and rescanned.  Half the tumors were gone and the others showed shrinkage.  I have been doing chemo off and on with Avastin and have now just started Vectibix.  My small town oncologist is very supportive and I know everyone at the clinic and they have been such a blessing.  They even fight for me with the insurance company for new drug coverage. I have gone to other specialists to get second opinions but have stayed with my clinic and my doc is always willing to confer with other docs to try to give the best treatment.  So far so good.  My doc is very optimistic that we can continue to treat this disease and keep it under control just like diabetes.  From a terminal disease to a chronic disease.  I don't have any miraculous news for you, but if you and your husband are willing to fight hard and long, you can still look forward to many more years ahead.  I have a good friend that I met at the center and he was given 6 months to live almost 5 years ago.  We cheer each other on and compare treatment options.  He has abdominal cancer which is simular to colon cancer.

Since I don't have the option of surgery, I have to stick with the chemo regiment.  I am optimistic that there will be new options in the future to needle blast these nodules maybe.  There are alot of new drugs on the market that were not out even 5 years ago that are getting positive results. Erbitux, Vectibix, Avastin...and more are in the pipeline.  I hope this can help giving you and your husband some ideas and optimism.  Hang in there.

God Bless,

Jeff

RE: Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

by cecgrove on Tue Apr 22, 2008 12:00 AM

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Dear Jeff,

Thank you for sharing your experience with us.  It did bring me hope.  I am am printing your message to share with my husband. He's stubborn and refused to use an support group and online help.  This is really really helpful.  I hope you will be writing soon to tell usthat all your tumors are gone.

God bless you and thanks again.

Cecilia 

 

RE: Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

by Jeffy on Tue Apr 22, 2008 12:00 AM

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On 4/22/2008 cecgrove wrote:

Dear Jeff,

Thank you for sharing your experience with us.  It did bring me hope.  I am am printing your message to share with my husband. He's stubborn and refused to use an support group and online help.  This is really really helpful.  I hope you will be writing soon to tell usthat all your tumors are gone.

God bless you and thanks again.

Cecilia 

 


Cecilia,

I'm glad that my experiences can be of some help.  Please know that you AND your husband need support.  This is a battle and both of you will need to be strong.  Sometimes you and he will want to give up at times but when one is weak the other can be strong and you will be able to pick each other up.  I'm not too big on support groups either but i have made friends at the clinic during treatments and because we have a life threatening illness there are bonds there that others may not understand.  I encourage both of you to reach out to resources you have available, church, friends, family and even workmates to lean on.  Most are willing to give support even though some may shy away because they don't know what to say or can't handle it themselves.  That has been my experience.  If your husband wants to email me with questions that would be fine too.  I have 4 grown step daughters and 2 grand kids so I know what he is feeling when faced with his mortality and possibly leaving you and the kids.  I struggle with this every day.  This is not a fight that he can do alone.  Just by you being on this site and seeking advice shows me how much you care also.  If the roles were reversed i am sure he would want the best care for you and would do whatever to took to try to fight this.  So don't let him just throw up his hands and give up when he has so much to fight for.  We are on the cutting edge of some major cancer breakthroughs now that they are use gene therapy and know more about how proteins in the cancer cells can be targeted.  So on the bright side we are living in the best time ever when it comes to positive cancer treatments and cures. Keep up the fight and God Bless.

Jeff

RE: Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

by cecgrove on Thu May 01, 2008 12:00 AM

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Hi Jeff or others who are reading this message,

My husband started his treatment last Friday and took Xeloda at home, which he had taken last year for 4 months with no life-threatening side-effects.  This time he reacted with symptoms of heart attack.  He was admitted to the hospital and was taken off Xeloda (which is an oral form of 5 FUs essentially).  It is supposed to work with Avastin but now the key ingredient of his chemo is gone.  Again we are quite shocked the 2nd time in 3 weeks after he found the spread to his lungs, then the inability to cope with the treatment that he could before.  I contacted support group and found it really helped.  But he refused to get any support and discuss about it.  The oncologist sounded very grim discussing with me over the phone.   I believe there are other ways out there because he is relatively young and strong.  But he did not want me to help him.  Any suggestions?

Cecilia 

 

RE: Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

by Joycetirro on Thu May 08, 2008 12:00 AM

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Ceclia,

This note if for you, from another wife you letter as so many isues but I will talk to only one.

. My husband had stage 4 rectal cancer 8 years ago.  When spots appeard on his lung doctors said "rectal cancer does not spread to the lung" because of this they said it could be an infection.  After 6 months I pushed and insisted to get a lung specialist involved.  Surprise -it was a secondary cancer. They removed 1/3 of his lung .  He recovered physically but not mentally.

 My experience has been as a care giver -so I cannot comment on what it must be like for the patient.  Strong is just one word for what you must be during this time- relentless, patient,hopeful. We all wish our husband's could be like the guys in the movies and except this fate, fight and recover and be stronger for the experience.  That is not always the case.  My husband did not attend any support groups . Not only has the family suffered through his illness we continue to suffer because now he is a changed man -selfish and sad . I tell you this so you husband might see the responsibility he has to seek a support group.  You and your family need him and there is a limit to what you can do.  I pray that you have the strength to see him though this difficult time and he has the strength to remember you and his children need him more now then ever.

Love

Joyce

RE: Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

by daisychain on Thu May 08, 2008 12:00 AM

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Hi Cecilia, my mum had that cardiac reaction to 5fu (iv version of xeloda) she stopped breathing for a few mins etc.  anyway, they scanned her after stopping her folfox and her cancer had progressed. we had thought it was all doom and gloom but in fact she started feeling a lot better after coming off her 5fu.

 

she is now on irinotecan and cetuximab and so far no hospitalisations or yucky diarrhea side effects.  some people cannot metabolise 5fu and it accumulates overtime to cause toxic side effects.  She had so many hospitalisations while on folfox and her quality of life was not great.  she is doing much better now and I really feel this combination is going to work for her.

good luck to you both.

 

RE: Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

by cecgrove on Thu May 15, 2008 12:00 AM

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On 5/8/2008 Joycetirro wrote:

Ceclia,

This note if for you, from another wife you letter as so many isues but I will talk to only one.

. My husband had stage 4 rectal cancer 8 years ago.  When spots appeard on his lung doctors said "rectal cancer does not spread to the lung" because of this they said it could be an infection.  After 6 months I pushed and insisted to get a lung specialist involved.  Surprise -it was a secondary cancer. They removed 1/3 of his lung .  He recovered physically but not mentally.

 My experience has been as a care giver -so I cannot comment on what it must be like for the patient.  Strong is just one word for what you must be during this time- relentless, patient,hopeful. We all wish our husband's could be like the guys in the movies and except this fate, fight and recover and be stronger for the experience.  That is not always the case.  My husband did not attend any support groups . Not only has the family suffered through his illness we continue to suffer because now he is a changed man -selfish and sad . I tell you this so you husband might see the responsibility he has to seek a support group.  You and your family need him and there is a limit to what you can do.  I pray that you have the strength to see him though this difficult time and he has the strength to remember you and his children need him more now then ever.

Love

Joyce

Joyce,

Thank you for your message.  Do I not have this feeling at times?  But at the other times, I really feel his suffering.  All I can do is to face every day, like you said, with strength and hope.  I don't know how I can deal with this otherwise, particularly the thoughts of our children losing their father.  So I can' worry too much about how my husband will turn out eventually but to help him fight.

God bless you

Cecilia 

 

 

RE: Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

by Jeffy on Wed Jun 25, 2008 12:00 AM

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On 5/1/2008 cecgrove wrote:

Hi Jeff or others who are reading this message,

My husband started his treatment last Friday and took Xeloda at home, which he had taken last year for 4 months with no life-threatening side-effects.  This time he reacted with symptoms of heart attack.  He was admitted to the hospital and was taken off Xeloda (which is an oral form of 5 FUs essentially).  It is supposed to work with Avastin but now the key ingredient of his chemo is gone.  Again we are quite shocked the 2nd time in 3 weeks after he found the spread to his lungs, then the inability to cope with the treatment that he could before.  I contacted support group and found it really helped.  But he refused to get any support and discuss about it.  The oncologist sounded very grim discussing with me over the phone.   I believe there are other ways out there because he is relatively young and strong.  But he did not want me to help him.  Any suggestions?

Cecilia 

 


Hi Cecillia,

I was just checking in to see how you husband is doing.  I am sad to hear of his bad reaction to the Xeloda.  My doctor had to take me off of it too last month because of some back skin infections I was getting while I was taking Vectibix.  I am only on the Vectibix now so I hope it will start to work.  Should find out next month after they do a CT scan.  Has his doctor said anything about Vectibix or Eurbitux?  These new drugs fight cancer cells even though it is not chemotherapy.  They can do some remarkable things for some people from what I hear.  They do have some ugly side effects like acne, rashes and skin probs.  But most of these can be countered by medication.  Hope this helps.  Let me know how things have been going?  Hang in there,

 

Jeff

RE: Rectal cancer metastasized to lung

by Suinoregon on Mon Jul 07, 2008 12:00 AM

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I'm cross-posting this in hopes of getting more replies.... 

 

Hi,

My mom has Stage 4 rectal cancer, spread to her lungs last
fall. We now have 3 well-respected surgeons willing to do surgery to
remove 11 nodules from both sides of her lungs. But other docs say
there are no studies that show that it will help prolong her life and
at least one oncologist said she would not have her mother go through
the surgery.

Our family is wrestling with what to do. We don't
want her to suffer needless pain from the surgery but we want every
possible chance at saving her. She has two new grandbabies.

Has
anyone else been in a similar situation and decided to go for surgery?
Some doctors are surprised to hear the surgeons are willing to operate.
Do surgeons just want to cut? Why are we getting such different answers
from different doctors?

 

My mom is on Xeloda and Avastin, which have greatly improved her quality of life.

Any thoughts or advice would be appreciated.

Thank you,

Su
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