debandre's Journey with Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Lung Cancer

Survivor: Lung Cancer > Non-Small Cell > Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Patient Info: Finished active treatment less than 5 years ago, Diagnosed: almost 8 years ago, Female, Age: 66, Stage IIIB, EGFR mutation positive: Don't Know

  1. 1
    • debandre
    • Experience with Squamous Cell Carcino...
    about 5 years ago
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    External radiation

    Radiation

    My esophagus was very badly burned, the tumor was wrapping itself around my esophagus and heart. I was in a lot of pain and could not eat or drink for 3 weeks and was hospitalized for 2 of those weeks. Now i get hiccups a lot when eating, occasionally it feels like food might be having a hard time getting through. I would absolutely have this treatment again as I feel I would have died without it.

    Painless Experience: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Agree
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  2. 2
    • debandre
    • Experience with Squamous Cell Carcino...
    about 5 years ago
    debandre's Avatar

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    Radiation was my main treatment although I did have chemo concurrently. The chemo side effects were minimal during this time. Three weeks after ending Radiation I started receiving much stronger treatments these had the typical side effects, of fatigue, nausea and generally just feeling crappy. No side effects after treatment so far.

    Easy to Do: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Agree
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  3. 3
    • debandre
    • Experience with Squamous Cell Carcino...
    about 5 years ago
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    Much higher doses of radiation with a PET scan in the middle, doses increased as tumor was shrinking.

    Clinical Trial

    I feel this Trial saved my life. I was stage 3b, surgery was not an option, tumor was very large wrapping around my heart and esophagus, 5 year survivor rate is 10%. I felt at the time this was my only chance at life. I strongly urge clinical trial for late stage cancers.

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  4. 4
    • debandre
    • Experience with Squamous Cell Carcino...
    about 5 years ago
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    Remission

    Celebration

    I celebrate being alive everyday. My whole outlook on life has changed. I found out how very many people really cared about me. I believe these are some of what I call cancer benefits. I am not saying it is worth having cancer to gain these benefits BUT I wish everyone could learn to value everyday and quit worrying about unimportant stuff and enjoy every day. No one knows their expiration date and every should live like there is no tomorrow.

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  5. 5
    • debandre
    • Experience with Squamous Cell Carcino...
    about 5 years ago
    debandre's Avatar

    To fight and believe I would beat this and survive.

    Decision Point

    I think having a positive attitude is vital. I have always been a fighter and it was in my favor in this case. From the first moment I repeatedly told myself I will beat this. When in a lot of pain, I would say to myself, this will pass it will heal you can get through this.

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