What next?

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What next?

by Bets821 on Wed May 06, 2015 04:43 PM

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Hi all,

Has anyone on here diagnosed Stage IV adenocarcinoma able to get to the point of having a clear CT scan as well as a normal and stable CA 19-9 after chemo treatment?  If so, what did you do next?

My mom, diagnosed June 2014, is doing really well.  She has 3 more chemo infusions scheduled, a CT scan and then we will know the results on June 2nd.  Based on her prior scans and consistent CA 19-9 being in normal range, her oncologist is assuming that her CT scan will show improvement, much like her two prior CT scans.  He even mentioned the possibility of a clear scan - which is a pretty bold statement!  If this is the case, she knows she can not stop treatment all together, but is wondering what other options people have taken and had success with.  Her doctor mentioned that she is entering uncharted territory because of how well she is doing.  He doesn't have a clear cut answer for her as to what to do next.  Surgery? Vaccine?  Continuing her immunotherapy?  Maintenance Chemo?  I know I am jumping the gun as we don't know what the scan will show, but we are continuing to stay hopeful and want to be prepared!

Thank you in advance for your comments!

RE: What next?

by galileesea on Thu May 07, 2015 01:09 AM

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Hi, 

Yes, my dad (age 51, diagnosed stage 4 in May 2013) had clear scans for over a year, then a small recurrence in his liver, and now has had a clear scan again.  It is possible!  My dad does folfirinox.  He has never stopped treatment, but it has been more spread out (for awhile he did it once a month, now he does it every three weeks).

I feel like not many people get to this point, so there aren't tons of answers out there.  Luckily, my dad has some really great doctors, a few of which are at Mayo in Rochester, MN.  We trust them to give us good advice.  So, I choose to focus on the things that I can help him to control - diet and exercise.  I highly recommend the book, "Life Over Cancer."  It's all about integrative care and addressing the root causes of the cancer.  Not to suggest it's a panacea, but I think it's quite compelling.

I guess I kind of feel like the more time my dad buys with the best existing treatment, folfirinox and radically healthy diet, the greater the likelihood that he'll get to benefit from new treatments as they come out.  

Definitely let me know what you discover!  It sounds like we're in similar situations.

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