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AFF Cancer Survivors Thread

love_the_life

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Yes. Pathology tests indicate which chemo treatment is most effective. Sometimes chemo will not work with particular types of cancers. Then there are trials which are trying to assess effectiveness.
Yes, I was tested to see if the BrCa (and this was 20+ years ago) was oestrogen receptor positive which then meant 5 years of hormone therapy after other treatment.
 

k_sheep

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Thank you all, this is very useful, and I sincerely appreciate your replies.

Given that everyone reacts differently to chemo (and that there may be many types of chemo drugs that are applicable to a particular carcinoma), do doctors test the subject (via bloods or otherwise), so see what would be the most effective (for both the person and carcinoma)?
There's a long way to go before we have truly personalised medicine. But yes, for many cancers we test for targetable mutations (things that will indicate if a particular drug is likely to work or not). This is generally actually done on the tumour tissue itself (either from a biopsy or from the resection).

The common ones are breast (ER, PR, HER2), lung (ALK, EGFR, PDL1, ROS1), colon (BRAF, KRAS), various lymphomas and leukaemias (CD20, CD30, CD57), melanomas (BRAF). Plenty of others, some of which have the evidence to back it up, several that don't but we will give it a crack.
 

QF WP

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I'd drink to that :D (exactly what I am doing now for you @JohnM). Reminds me I must go and have my blood tests :eek:
 

Buzzard

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I'd drink to that :D (exactly what I am doing now for you @JohnM). Reminds me I must go and have my blood tests :eek:
PSA?
I gave up, I'm not so sure the test tells you anything. Happy to be convinced otherwise.
 

tgh

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I found something relevant recently ; my potted summary is that almost all ordinary prostrate cancers will result in a high psa.
Will try to find it.
 

JohnM

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I found something relevant recently ; my potted summary is that almost all ordinary prostrate cancers will result in a high psa.
Will try to find it.
In general, that is correct, but high PSA is not definitive for the occurrence of prostate cancer.

The information I posted related to the follow-up PSA tests after having my prostate removed. The highly desirable - if not essential - result under that circumstance is undetectable PSA.

If PSA is still detectable, that raises the very serious concern that the cancer spread outside the prostate capsule before removal and is therefore still in the body, metastasising in other organs.
 

love_the_life

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In general, that is correct, but high PSA is not definitive for the occurrence of prostate cancer.

The information I posted related to the follow-up PSA tests after having my prostate removed. The highly desirable - if not essential - result under that circumstance is undetectable PSA.

If PSA is still detectable, that raises the very serious concern that the cancer spread outside the prostate capsule before removal and is therefore still in the body, metastasising in other organs.
And that is the situation MrLtL is in - very low PSA but detectable. PNE was discussed. It’s still watch and wait though.
 

JohnM

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And that is the situation MrLtL is in - very low PSA but detectable. PNE was discussed. It’s still watch and wait though.
How long has it been since his prostatectomy and how many follow-up PSA tests, LTL? My PSA was 0.01 ug/L after 6 weeks and now after 7 months it's shown as <0.01 ug/L - which I have interpreted as undetectable, given that they only express the result to two decimal places. I have an appointment with my urologist next week, so I still have to see what he says.
 

love_the_life

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How long has it been since his prostatectomy and how many follow-up PSA tests, LTL? My PSA was 0.01 ug/L after 6 weeks and now after 7 months it's shown as <0.01 ug/L - which I have interpreted as undetectable, given that they only express the result to two decimal places. I have an appointment with my urologist next week, so I still have to see what he says.
Been 5 months. First reading was 0.03 after 6 weeks then repeated 4 weeks later (0.02 which the Dr thought was a measurement error) then again at the end of August - 0.04. Still they are very low but he was told that it looked like the cancer had escaped the capsule right from the beginning. Has chosen no radio therapy at present as the side affects can create more problems than it solves. So continue to watch and wait. He has recovered very well and is not overly fazed most of the time.
 

JohnM

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I saw my urologist today. If the PSA remains undetectable, I do not have to see him again.

PSA monitoring through my GP every six months for the next two years, then annually more or less indefinitely.

The 'journey' from diagnosis, through active surveillance, to the stage change trigger for seemingly successful prostatectomy has been seven years... He's a nice bloke, but it's time we parted ways!
 

Buzzard

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<snip>
Basically it was a rapid increase in PSA, followed by MRI, then biopsy then surgery. Fingers crossed for a zero result from the next PSA test in 5 weeks. Boy, they sure know how to charge! :eek: I do wonder how people without access to ready funds manage.
I last visited my urologist on 13th February and an MRI and biopsy was ordered. Although I have insurance I decided to go the public route. My biopsy was scheduled for May, just 3 months later. I actually postponed it until late June because I was overseas. For me the public system worked well and at zero cost.
 

rogerkambah

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I last visited my urologist on 13th February and an MRI and biopsy was ordered. Although I have insurance I decided to go the public route. My biopsy was scheduled for May, just 3 months later. I actually postponed it until late June because I was overseas. For me the public system worked well and at zero cost.
So, anything else, or just watch and wait?
 

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