Weeks 188-190: Chemo, radiation, conferences

Written by Lars Haakon Soraas

Weeks 188, 189 and 190 in the war on lung cancer have passed. Here are the highlights:

  • As mentioned was the plan in the previous post, Dyanne had chemo two and a half weeks ago. The chemo infusions were uneventful, and the nausea that she had in the days after the last chemo (in December), was gone now. Most likely the disappearing nausea was due to a stronger, and better, anti-nausea drug called Akynzeo.
  • In the past weeks, Dyanne has also had stereotactic radiation of the small brain mets that appeared on the last brain MRI. These were all treated in one go with 18 Gy. And she has had stereotactic radiation (4 Gy x 3) of the liver metastasis that was growing on the last CT scan.
  • Dyanne was pretty weak before the chemo and was also quite fatigued following the chemo. However, in the past couple of weeks, she has gradually gotten better. She has eaten well (probably partly thanks to mirtazapine) and gained some weight.
  • We have measured the tumor markers CEA and NSE only once after the chemo. Just before chemo, CEA was 37.6. In the week after chemo, it had fallen to 30. NSE was 30 just before chemo, and had fallen to 12 in the week after chemo. It thus seems chemo is having an effect.

While Dyanne has been getting all this treatment, I have been travelling. I went to the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) in Atlanta. The AACR conference is one of the largest cancer research conferences in the world. It was a good place to catch up on the latest research and meet both researchers and fellow patient advocates. After Atlanta, I went to a much smaller meeting in New York. The meeting was organized by the IASLC and was focused on small cell lung cancer (SCLC), which, although not identical, is very similar to the large cell neuroendocrine carcinoma that Dyanne’s lung cancer has transformed into. It was also a very good meeting. Several new treatment ideas came out of these two meetings, and now we are trying to evaluate those, together with the various treatment ideas we already had from before.

Today the sun has been shining here in Oslo. We went for a walk around a lake. It has been a nice day.

Hope everyone will have a good week!

Sunny day by the lake



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