Metastatic Sarcomatoid Carcinoma

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Metastatic Sarcomatoid Carcinoma

by Tami on Sat Feb 28, 2009 12:00 AM

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Our Mom has been recently dx with the following listed above- We need as much info as anyone can provide, there are so many mixed messages and treatments , however we are aware it is not curable per the CA Doc but non the less-we want to make the right choices and decisions as far as treatment vs non treatment for her - Some has listed that the tumors dissapear and in some cases they have with our Mom but have come back with a vengance - Recently she was rushed to ER due to  tumor ruptured the spleen and she was bleeding out, according to the docs this never happens except in Leukemia patients but it did for her.. Testing has been ongoing since March of last year , Mom went in for Cataracts and the Doc she saw insisted on a chest X-ray before they went any further , am unsure why but almost a year later and multi biospys of the lungs and lymph nodes int he center of the chest, pulmonologist were certain it was not cancer until Dec another CT was done and a tumor showed in the adrenal gland along within the areas of the liver and spleen, also a lymph node under the arm had been causing her pain- Upon biopsy approx 3 weeks ago of the arm lympoh node the Dx was made and then a week later the spleen ruptured.. We have been advised this is an aggressive Ca , and is not curable but I have read cases where after chemo and or removal of the tumors that some have had a 5 year servival rate and unfortunaly the majority of cases I have seen and or read have been where our Mom is at now - Since being home , she sleeps alot except for a night - is uncomfortable , denies pain but you can see that shes in pain- nothing tastes right to her so no appeitite to speak of , has lost alot of weight already due to not eating- she has stomache upset alot -  We are frustrated with the docotors, althought this being a rare Ca ,I dodnt beleive there is enough info on it and or out there , we are still waiting on further from Mayo on the first biopsy but for now this was the dx given.. Mom has alwasy been healty , never ill , never in hospitals - it so insanley wrong to see someone so well and then a matter of hours and weeks , its gone -  I am angry , I know it is one of the steps but I dont understand the technology they have now it just blows me aways that no one knows anything  ( the Doctors)    

Please,, anyone who has insight and suggestions we would so greatly appreciate them- Our Mom is our rock for our family and our Best Friend  , we whats best for her .. and as much as I hate to say it , it needs to be about quality vs quanity now , I hope I am wrong , and she can be with us for another 5-10 years however not if shes in pain and miserable and unable to enjoy life ..  Please Help

RE: Metastatic Sarcomatoid Carcinoma

by Magtini on Fri Mar 27, 2009 12:00 AM

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On 2/28/2009 Tami wrote:

Our Mom has been recently dx with the following listed above- We need as much info as anyone can provide, there are so many mixed messages and treatments , however we are aware it is not curable per the CA Doc but non the less-we want to make the right choices and decisions as far as treatment vs non treatment for her - Some has listed that the tumors dissapear and in some cases they have with our Mom but have come back with a vengance - Recently she was rushed to ER due to  tumor ruptured the spleen and she was bleeding out, according to the docs this never happens except in Leukemia patients but it did for her.. Testing has been ongoing since March of last year , Mom went in for Cataracts and the Doc she saw insisted on a chest X-ray before they went any further , am unsure why but almost a year later and multi biospys of the lungs and lymph nodes int he center of the chest, pulmonologist were certain it was not cancer until Dec another CT was done and a tumor showed in the adrenal gland along within the areas of the liver and spleen, also a lymph node under the arm had been causing her pain- Upon biopsy approx 3 weeks ago of the arm lympoh node the Dx was made and then a week later the spleen ruptured.. We have been advised this is an aggressive Ca , and is not curable but I have read cases where after chemo and or removal of the tumors that some have had a 5 year servival rate and unfortunaly the majority of cases I have seen and or read have been where our Mom is at now - Since being home , she sleeps alot except for a night - is uncomfortable , denies pain but you can see that shes in pain- nothing tastes right to her so no appeitite to speak of , has lost alot of weight already due to not eating- she has stomache upset alot -  We are frustrated with the docotors, althought this being a rare Ca ,I dodnt beleive there is enough info on it and or out there , we are still waiting on further from Mayo on the first biopsy but for now this was the dx given.. Mom has alwasy been healty , never ill , never in hospitals - it so insanley wrong to see someone so well and then a matter of hours and weeks , its gone -  I am angry , I know it is one of the steps but I dont understand the technology they have now it just blows me aways that no one knows anything  ( the Doctors)    

Please,, anyone who has insight and suggestions we would so greatly appreciate them- Our Mom is our rock for our family and our Best Friend  , we whats best for her .. and as much as I hate to say it , it needs to be about quality vs quanity now , I hope I am wrong , and she can be with us for another 5-10 years however not if shes in pain and miserable and unable to enjoy life ..  Please Help


Hi Tami.  I am really and truly sorry to hear that your mother was diagnosed with metastatic sarcomatoid carcinoma.  My father had the same diagnosis, and I will share with to you what I have learned.  As with your mother, he was never ill, and he was really healthy until this cancer came along.  He was diagnosed in August 2007 and passed away in October 2008 at the age of 84, so we (me, family and friends) had ~ a year to be with him after his diagnosis. This type of cancer is rare, and it has unfortunately metasticized.  I am very glad that the Mayo clinic is involved in your mother's case, because a large cancer center can help guide everyone with the next steps.  As of last year, there is no specific chemo/chemo-cocktail targeting this cancer.  Is your mom receiving radiation to shrink her tumors?  It is also important to remember that most physicians in the USA are trained to "cure," but there comes a time for palliative care.  You may want to have her assessed for hospice.  Everyone associates hospice with a person not having many days left on this earth.  However, they can help your mother and family for several months to get through everything that is going on with your mother--physical changes, emotional changes, appropriate health care, etc.  Spend time with her, hold her hand, talk about the good times along with respect for her situation (denial is easy, but not healthy).  The hospicenet.org web site provides good information.  It is also important that her "living will," power of attorney (financial, health), her will, etc. are in order.  This will be difficult, but find out and document what she wants in regarding to services for her passing--cremation (scattered, buried), full funeral, waked, where to be buried or scattered, etc.  These are hard topics to discuss, but it's amazing how different family members have different ideas of what they think the person wants.  Even though she doesn't have a great appetite (they do make a medication to increase an appetite), let her eat/drink her favorite foods/drinks.  My father loved ice cream, and that was the last thing he ate.  Popsicles and ice can be good for her too.  Be careful with large crowds and ill friends/relatives around her, because her immune system is already compromised.  Hopefully, she will not have to spend a lot of time in the hospital--staph.  For you and your family who are working, you may be able to partake in the Family Medical Leave Act to care for your mother.  In a nutshell, you may be able to take time off from work (up to 12 weeks) without jeapordizing your job.  I really with I could talk about a cure, but I found out all that you did--nothing.  Also, please keep in mind that an oncologist may suggest chemo to prolong her life, but chemo has its bad side effects, so the costs and benefits need to be seriously weighed.  Make sure she knows the pros and cons of all recommended treatments so that she can make a wisest choice (not easy in her situation).  If she rejects a cancer treatment, she is tired and wants to move on...that's is okay.   It is important for her to be as comfortable as possible, but she may not want to be a zombie on morphine, but even a small dose may help her.  I wish your mom and all of you peace and some understanding during this difficult time.

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