• ajh's Avatar

    What is normally the maximum number of rounds/cycles of Chemo

    Asked by ajh on Friday, February 22, 2013

    What is normally the maximum number of rounds/cycles of Chemo

    What is normally the maximum number of rounds/cycles of Chemo that can be given for Pancreatic Cancer, locally advanced, and is the Chemo deemed to be working if it is keeping the tumor 'at bay'. not shrinking, but not getting bigger either.

    Thanks very much for any answers

    5 Answers from the Community

    5 answers
    • carm's Avatar

      I am an oncology nurse, and I do not know the regimen you are on so I would like to direct you to a website called chemotherapyadvisor.com and on the right side of the homepage there is a listing of cancers and their regimens. Pancreatic is under the Gastrointestinal cancers. The site is free to join and you will be able to see your regimen and usually it will say how many cycles are the norm. Chemotherapy is effective it the disease does not advance. Stable disease is considered a result of effective therapy. I hope this answers your question, Carm RN.

      over 5 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      There is no maximum. Some patients are on chemo as a maintenance regimen for life. Maintenance is to keep the tumor "at bay". If the chemo stops, the tumor usually starts to grow again.

      over 5 years ago
    • Peroll's Avatar

      Chemo is deemed to be working if thre tumor(s) stay the same or shrink in size as cancer likes to grow. As nancyjac said there is no maximum number of cycles;l however, eventially the cancer may become resistant to the chemo and begin to grow. Ofte after a number of cycles, even if the chemo is still "working" they will change up the regimine to a different drug combination to see if that is more effective and try a nd prevent the cancer from becoming resistant to chemo. After a while with the chemo maintaining the size of the cancer but not shrinking it, it may be time to have a talk with the Drs about any alternative treatments that may be moe effective. Some times you have to ask questions tro get the Drs to think about different approaches that may be more effective. I have done that several times and usually with good results. Good Luck and let us know if we can be of more help.

      over 5 years ago
    • JMS's Avatar

      Hi - I can only speak from my own experience at this point, but I had 18 IV infusions (and 28 radiation exposures, with 43 days of the oral chemo drug, Xeloda). The IV infusions were divided into 2 phases, separated by the radiation phase. The first was 6 infusions and the second 18. Now I'm in a hiatus phase wherein doctors will check periodically on growth of tumors and put me back into chemo if and as necessary.
      I definitely agree you should ask very specific questions of your doctor - and because of my issues with chemobrain, I always had to write down both questions and answers. Good luck and let us know if you have other questions. JMS

      over 5 years ago
    • FreeBird's Avatar

      I think they will keep giving it to you until it fails, or if they feel you cannot handle it in your condition. Then they can try something else. What chemotherapy is your spouse receiving? Gemzar? (gemcitabine)

      over 5 years ago

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