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Bladder cancer recurrence

12 years 7 months ago #9205 by wendy
Hi Aimeth and welcome,

You are not alone, there are other wives here with husbands undergoing chemo for metastasized bladder cancer here, and some men and women who are dealing with it themselves.

The prognosis is related to whether the new treatment will work, and there is no way to tell that yet. Because the first combination of drugs failed to halt the cancer- as seen in the lymph nodes in the area of the bladder, they are following it with MVAC, which is a heavier combination than Gemzar and cisplatin. It is known as the "mother of all chemos' when it comes to bladder cancer treatments...and is not easy to take. If it works it will be worth it, buying your husband some more time, and hopefully quality time.

Only your husband can say if the treatments are worth going through, and since he is choosing to take the new recommended treatments it shows he's still up to continuing to fight this.

As a caregiver, it's extremely hard to see our loved one suffering, my heart goes out to you. The best thing is to take things one day at a time; be very careful to avoid infection.

Lymph node involvement is more treatable than if it were in another organ or bone, and sometimes those whose cancer is confined to the lymph nodes and respond to chemo can have a good remission. I hope so for you.


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12 years 7 months ago #9190 by aimeth
Renee, I am very sorry for your lost and I thank you for taking the time to respond to my message. In response to your reply it has not spread meaning to mayor organs. It is localized for now. But in the last cat they see a new 14 m external iliac lymph node present. I am not sure what it means. But they are saying that is suspicious for recurrence. I don't know what to think and have very mixed feelings. It is very hard to see him suffer always in pain and sick from the chemo and pain meds. In your husband's case how many lymph nodes where involved and did it spread to other parts or organs? Again thank you for sharing with me! and looking forward to hearing from you and many others.

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12 years 7 months ago #9178 by Renee
Hello Aimeth,
I am sorry to hear about the recurrence of your husband's cancer. It must be very hard for you right now and I feel for you. It is unfortunate, that the chemo wasn't effective and I hope that the MVAC will help, but it may not. That is when the drs may use radiation for palliative purposes. Palliative care is used to relieve the suffering and reduce the sypmtoms in other words it will try to make your husband as comfortable as possible, but not cure him. You write that the cancer has not spread, but that there is some lymp node involvement. How many lymph nodes are involved? It is hard to say what the prognosis is at this point. What are your feelings about it yourself? I can sympathize with you, my husband was diagnosed in early Jan.'06 with invasive bladder cancer. He received a neobladder in April '06. Unfortunately, the pathology report showed lymph node involvement. He passed away in Oct. '06.
Keep in touch, and try to take care of yourself.

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12 years 7 months ago #9176 by aimeth
Hello to all, My name is Aimeth and my husband (53 yrs) was first diagnosed with invasive bladder cancer back in 03. His bladder was removed and replaced with a neobladder. Since then he has been in remission till this year. Back in March of this year he started getting severe back pains. A cat scan reveled he has a tumor outside his bladder (5x3 cm) and is highly aggressive tumor invading the soft tissue (as per biopsy). We have been treating it with Cisplatin/Gemzar and have completed 4 cycles. His Drs don't think has worked as well as expected so now we just started MVAC. He will go through 2 cycles and then they will determine how to proceed, if more chemo or move onto radiation for "Palliation as needed" What does this mean? It has not spread anywheres else as they can see so far but he does have some apparent lymph nodes involvement. He has been in a lot of pain with many chemo side effects and complications. Needless to say it has been a hard and difficult road for all of us. What kind of prognosis can we expect? It is very difficult to understand this. I join this group because I am looking to learn, and understand more about this disease and hear other people's stories. Somehow I hope it will help me get through this.... Anyways, thank you.

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