• Looking for similar treatment of colon cancer.

    Asked by Pangea422 on Saturday, October 1, 2011

    Looking for similar treatment of colon cancer.

    Mom is being treated for Stage IV colon cancer and was told she has 2-4 years to live, which I call BS, because I believe the chemo will help her and give her plenty more years (she's 65). Some people might be rolling their eyes, but this is what I choose to believe right now because I have to. She's on Oxaliplatin and Avastin once, with 2 weeks of oral Zeloda (4 pills/day) and then followed by 1 week of rest. Anyone else on a similar regimen? She just started this past week, so it's all new to us.

    13 Answers from the Community

    13 answers
    • PhillieG's Avatar
      PhillieG

      I never understood the doctors giving expiration dates or even people asking for them. No one knows when or what we'll die from. Just because a person has cancer does not mean we won't get hit by a truck! Now that's a pleasant thought...
      So I think it's BS too.
      I have done Avastin with FOLFOX when I started this 7 1/2 years ago. I've also done Oxyalplatin with Leucavorin and 5FU. I have not done Zeloda but I know it's a common protocol. Has she had surgery yet? If so, what was affected?
      There's many factors that determine how well a person does with all of this but I don't see why they say 2-4 years. I was stage IV and never asked, nor was I told anything about checking out.
      Make sure she's under good care...
      -p

      over 5 years ago
    • Pangea422's Avatar
      Pangea422

      Yes she had surgery already and is on that combo for now. Did they change your regimen because of your progress or side affects? She's been vomiting at least once a day. Thank you for your response.

      over 5 years ago
    • PhillieG's Avatar
      PhillieG

      They changed it because of progress that I made. I did chemo, then surgery, then chemo, then surgery etc. Each time I progressed as they hoped I would.

      As far as nausea goes, if marijuana is legal for medicinal purposes I would "highly" recommend it. It's by far the best thing out there for it. Too bad all states don't help people who can really benefit from it.

      over 5 years ago
    • ChrisRu's Avatar
      ChrisRu

      against vomiting, check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Granisetron

      It really helped me.

      over 5 years ago
    • CherylHutch's Avatar
      CherylHutch

      Yep... I think the expiry dates that doctors give are BS too. Some people are going to lose the fight and some are going to win and then there are all of us inbetween where we are "living with cancer" not "dying from cancer". There's a big difference between the two, and yes, attitude has a lot to do with it!

      I was one of the silly ones who, when we found my cancer had spread to the right adrenal gland and lungs, I wanted to know what the prognosis was. In fairness to my oncologist, she did not want to discuss prognosis, but wanted to discuss what our plans were going to be now. But, silly me, I insisted... so she said, the stats show that the prognosis for colon cancer that has spread are 2 - 24 months. Needless to say, I freaked out... freaked out big time! I was 53 years old when I was given that prognosis. My expiry date would be no later than March 2010. Well, last time I checked my calendar, was yesterday and we have just started October 2011.... so my expiry date has come and gone and we are heading towards 2 years PASSED my expiry date.

      No, I'm not cured... and yes, I'm in treatment. I've lost track of all the chemos I've been on. I don't think I've been on the same combo your mom is on (I haven't been on Avastin yet) but I've been on the Oxy, the 5FU, the Xeloda and the Irinotecan. All of them can have side affects but to what degree/severity really boils down to each individual. I had a HORRIBLE time with Irinotecan, yet a lot of folk who have been on it have experience little to no side affects. I had very little side affects with the 5FU, but the Oxy really did a number on my feet and both legs below the knees. I have severe neuropathy in both of them which does make walking a bit of a challenge. But like you, my attitude is, "I need my legs/feet to walk, so therefore my problem is minimal!" and sure enough, I'm still walking, with the help of a cane, but the cane is more for security than I actually need it to walk. I have this horrible fear of falling, but when I have the cane, I'm not quite so fearful that I am going to fall ;)

      I agree with Phil... marijuana helps big time with nausea, although, this past week when I had chronic nausea, the thought of smoking, even a puff or two, made me more nauseous. So it will depend on her comfort level with smoking and/or the smell. If that bothers her, then making some treats with it (IE: brownies, butter tarts, etc) may make it easier to digest.

      Keep us posted on how things go... and make sure you tell her that there IS no expiry date, no matter what stage the cancer has been catergorized as. Chances are, we will all die from the crazy drivers out there, the crazy weather out there or any number of things we haven't thought of. There will be those with cancer who die before us, but then there will be those who don't have cancer who will die before us... so dying is not what we should ever be focusing on :) Living life and enjoying it should be our priority... and the fact we have cancer, well, so be it, we just have to adjust to living with cancer... just like others have to adjust to living with diabetes, or living with some other illness :)

      over 5 years ago
    • ChrisRu's Avatar
      ChrisRu

      Cheryl, I share your thoughts! When I first was diagnosed (spread into bones & lungs), the doctore (after letting me wait for two hrs because he had forgot my appointment). I came in, he looked at my files and said: well, you know, nobody so far has survived 5 years. This somehow annoyed me a little. I said thank you, asked for my file, stood up and never went back to this doc... Now it is already 4 years and it still looks ok for the next few years. For the individual case, statistics are not relevant.

      over 5 years ago
    • Jean's Avatar
      Jean

      I am stage 3 colon cancer they removed my asending colon right way the resection went very good no more tumor removed 16 lymph nods 7 where bad so they put me on the same therapy as your mom the pills after 2 rounds made my very sick so they decreesed my oxi. down 10% and give my 5-fu go home with a pump for 46 hours then they come remove it much more tollerable and no nasua so far, i have the pills for it jusy incase and the pot matter of fact i will ask my doctor about that when i see him again in Oct. not a bad idea and its not another chemical in my system. We all fair different on medications if its not working for you speak up inform your nurses and doctor its your body not wants to fell crappy but somes times in life we have to do things we all don't care for ok chemo is 1 of them but hang in there i know i'm trying hard :)

      over 5 years ago
    • Jayne's Avatar
      Jayne

      I was on a similar regiment: Avastin, Xeloda and Oxaliplatin after my reoccurence. I had to drop the Oxali about halfway through because I was really having trouble tolerating it (but I was all alone too so that might have contributed to my lack of enthusiasm/caring). The Xeloda eventually make the skin on my hands peel and obviously created tenderness. The Avastin was relatively symptom free. I think if your Mom can do her best to muscle through the regiment, all the better. But remember that she does have a say in the matter and if it's just destroying the quality of life for her, don't hesitate to have an open discussion with your doc. These are guidelines for drug administration, and each body reacts differently. Try to keep her as nourished as possible (Ensure, etc) and lots of TLC and rest. Sleep is a godsend and welcome escape some days. And....YOU need to stay healthy too so don't neglect yourself!

      over 5 years ago
    • Pangea422's Avatar
      Pangea422

      @Jayne - thanks so much for your answer. it really helps hearing how other people react to the treatment. thanks for that. i keep telling her that the treatment isn't supposed to change her lifestyle too much, but she's under the impression that if you don't suffer a little bit, then the medicine isn't working. hard to change old school thinking. and thanks, yes, i am definitely trying to take care of myself too, but it's difficult because then i feelt guilty if i'm having a good time doing something while she's going through this difficult treatment. sigh.

      over 5 years ago
    • abrub's Avatar
      abrub

      On expiration dates - one dr I saw gave me 2-4 years. I'm 4 1/2 years out, and my expiration is no where in sight. In fact, my current dr doesn't want to see me for another scan for 18 months, at which point, I'll be 6 years out.

      Statistics apply to groups, not to individuals.

      over 5 years ago
    • abrub's Avatar
      abrub

      I should add that I also had Folfox+ Avastin -- got thru 7 of 12 planned rounds, but the evidence for efficacity against my cancer is non-existent. Therefore, the known side effects were not worth the unknowns of whether this would buy me anything. Many fellow appendix cancer patients are not given any systemic chemo. I also had intraperitoneal chemo of 5FU, given at about 300 times the strength of what they use in IV chemo, because it is not in the bloodstream.

      That being said, this regimen (Xeloda or 5FU with Oxaliplatin) is known to be effective against colon cancer, and had that been my dx, I would have struggled through.

      over 5 years ago
    • AngieJ's Avatar
      AngieJ

      Hi I am 53 I was diagnosed with stage IV colo/rectal cancer in july 2011 ;Stage 4, node 1, mets 0. I lemon sized tumor & 1 ,2.5mm tumor that grew into my vaginal floor ,hosp 28 days ;6 hr surgery Big surgery ,port placed 2 rounds of Mitomyacin & F5U, & 25 days of radiation ,I insisted on knowing my stage of cancer & 5 yr survival rate which is 40% I felt the need to know because I am a nurse . My treatment complete oct
      2011 , I do not take any medication for cancer now . I do worry about cancer it can do what it wants . I haven't been given a exp date & I don't know any DR that would ,in fact I feel they want to focus on the positive side ,but I know there must be Drs. Saying these things . I joined Gildas Club end of December ;it's a great organization ; we have a meal 1st then support meeting ,my husband joined ;my mom joined last wk & we are in diff.groups which makes it nice ;it helps relate to others with cancer & in my group there are several cancer survivors that have exceeded the 5 yr survival rate so proof is there .don't give up please .

      about 5 years ago
    • Rosa's Avatar
      Rosa

      It is good for you and your mom that you don't believe in predictions. God is the only one that knows how long any of us is going to live. Doctors can speak of statistics, probabilities, that's all.
      I received 4 doses of Oxaplatin (2 every 2 weeks and 2 weekly). Four weeks of oral Xeloda (4 pills, 5 days a week) taken the days I had radio. Twenty-eight rounds of radio.
      The last 2 weeks the Xeloda were reduced to 2 pills a day due to the heavy diarrhea I had (caused by the combination of all the treatments).
      My treatment was from May to June 2012. My next appointment is in November.
      Thanks to my doctors, the treatment, and above all, my Lord, I am clean according to the PT scan. My surgeon even did an anoscopy and he says there is not even a scar where the mass was.
      Take care, pray with confidence, and believe that the Lord will see you both through this.
      I saw now that your question was posted a year ago. I hope you are both doing well.
      God bless you.

      over 4 years ago

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