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Pancreas Cancer

Yes was posted 11/29/2013 11:37 pm by Jonathan
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It is very common if not considered to be the standard care to have some form of chemo and possibly radiation after surgery. This is particularly true in cases where any of the lymph nodes removed during surgery show signs of cancer. Even under the best circumstances it's difficult if not impossible for the surgeon to say that 100% of the cancerous cells were removed, the idea is to use the chemo and radiation to clean-up any remaining cancer cells ASAP. The generally accepted standard of care is to use Gemzar (AKA Gemcitabine) alone or sometimes in combination with one or more other chemo agents. Then the next step might be to use a course of radiation treatments, typically in combination with another chemo agent, 5-FU or Xeloda are the most common agents used in conjunction with the radiation.

There are some factors that may influence the oncologists recommendations for post-surgery treatment like the patients overall health or other factors that might help determine your ability to tolerate the treatments. And of course the final pathology reports that will help determine the chance that the cancer could have spread at all, this is where a report of no cancer in the lymph nodes might indicate a less aggressive course.

In my personal case I usually leaned toward the more aggressive treatments and was NED (no evidence of disease) for @ 3 years. Currently I'm receiving chemo for a recurrence in my lungs and have been for the last 2 years. Very soon I will celebrate being a 5 year survivor and still lean toward the most aggressive treatment options available.

Good luck with whatever you decide and if chemo is the choice or not there are many folks here who have already been through your circumstances and are more than willing to help you with any questions or concerns you have on your path to beating this cancer.

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