What makes one person a candidate for surgical removal of the tumor or removal of the entire lung?

What makes one person a candidate for surgical removal of the tumor or removal of the entire lung. My father has squamous cell which they say has very immature cells which the doc told us meant that it spreads quickly but chemo works well with it. I just don't understand why they wont remove his entire lung being that it is there and a tiny spot on his adrenal gland. Thank you all. This is a place filled with such kind wonderful people.

Colleen Cummins
C
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14 ANSWER

I know I struggle with the same question my mom was told the same because it's a way higher chance of survival with lobectomy

Darlene Soto
D

My Dad's rt lung is partially collapsed due to the occlusion from the tumor so why not just get rid of the lung. It is not working very well anyway. WE did not get enough information form the pulmonologist. He was not willing to sit with us long enough to answer our questions. It was very frustrating. We are meeting with oncologist Monday where I will pose the question again. God Bless you and your family Darlene Soto

Colleen Cummins
C

My moms is small cell too and she only has in one lung so I don't understand why they can't either they only said that chemo and radiation work good and she wasn't able to have lung removed god bless you and your dad as well I pray you get help .

Darlene Soto
D

I have small cell lung cancer to and i didn't understand it but now i do are cancer is in are blood and if they remove one lung we could get it in the orher lung. Is what i think it is.

Carol Weaver 3 years

carol oh really thanks for responding it's so hard understanding

Darlene Soto 3 years

I don't think my father has small cell but I don't know the difference between the small cell and non small cell. I will let you know what the doc says on Monday about the surgery. Maybe my father is too old. He is 77. I don't know. God Bless!

Colleen Cummins
C

Small cell is unfortunately more difficult to treat than non small cell and often more aggressive. Squamous is one strain of NSCLC typically very aggressive (especially poorly differentiated which I have & sounds like your dad may have) Adenocarcinoma is a more common strain of NSCLC. Less common is large cell cancer. Right now a lot of research is being done for NSCLC with genetic mutation and immunotherapy.

JoAnn Kramer 3 years

Here is a resource for basic understanding of a type & stages. http://www.lungcancer.org/find_information/publications/163-lung_cancer_101/268-types_and_staging

Mary Hart 3 years

Mary Hart thank you so much. This is very helpful information.

Colleen Cummins 3 years

JoAnn Kramer I'm not sure what type of squamous cell but I was told that it is very immature which meant it was easily taken care of by chemo

Colleen Cummins 3 years

It is not small cell.

Colleen Cummins 3 years

I also had squamous cell but stage 1B. They removed my right bottom lung. I had chemo and now I am cancer free. I am 62 and was in fairly good health. It may be the age.

Annella Lucas
A

I'm so happy for you! What wonderful news. Thank you for sharing with me.!

Colleen Cummins 3 years

Colleen Cummins Thank you. Help him to stay positive. It's a rough journey.

Annella Lucas 3 years

How did you catch your cancer so early?

Colleen Cummins 3 years

Colleen Cummins I had surgery for another cancer and the oncologist ordered a routine exray before surgery but the doctor that read it thought I had pneumonia. My family doctor didn't think so and sent me for a ct scan which showed the tumor. It was the first chest ex ray that I have ever had. I've had great doctors. The chemo didn't make to sick as long as I took the meds they gave me for it plus the steroids they gave me but it was still rough but I got through it.

Annella Lucas 3 years

Annella Lucas you have a wonderful doctor and a fantastic higher power on your side! Did it cause you to lose too much weight? We are having trouble keeping the weight on my dad because of no salivary gland from cancer! I'm so happy to hear how well it went for you!

Colleen Cummins 3 years
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I have squamous NSCLC also and did not have surgery. However, I already had some nearby lymph nodes involved so I was told surgery wasn't an option since it had already metastasized.

JoAnn Kramer
J

So sorry joann. Keep up the fight and you will be in my prayers

Annella Lucas 3 years

He has a small spot on his adrenal gland which could be why. I'm sorry you have this awful cancer! God Bless you!

Colleen Cummins 3 years

What treatments are you doing? If you don't mind sharing.

Colleen Cummins 3 years

I did radiation & chemo and am now on a targeted therapy daily pill, Tarceva. My tumor is mostly scar tissue & dissolving, 2 spots I had in my spleen are gone, and only one lymph node is still enlarged but has shrunk 80%. Has your dad's tumor had genetic testing???? It opens many treatment options if there's a gene mutation.

JoAnn Kramer 3 years

JoAnn Kramer you are doing fantastic joann! Congratulations to you! No we just got the results of the broncoscopy on Friday. Met with pulminologist and he said that we can't do genetic testing or immunotherapy. He was really nasty so we are moving his cell swabs, if that is what you call them, to another doc. We don't know if he was telling the truth or not. So it sounds like genetic testing is the first step? My uncle passed 9 years ago after a 4 year battle with lung cancer. He used avastin and tarceva. They were only for colon c back then. He had to pay out of pocket for it then. How long from your diagnosis to the point where you are today? Is there somewhere I can find online the steps to follow for the testing and then the different treatment options? I just don't know where to begin.

Colleen Cummins 3 years
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They cant remove a primary tumor if its spread elsewhere. The best example i can give is. İt would be like removing a teacher from a class of 5 yr olds. The kids would go crazy if no one is in charge. The primary tumor is in charge! X

Louise Napier
L

They told me since the cancer cells had already entered my system, removing the tumor was pointless (my term, not my doc). Undergoing surgery is traumatic and wouldn't remove the cancer already hiding somewhere else.

JoAnn Kramer 3 years

My dad was just diagnosed with same thing. Prior to knowing the name of cancer they attempted to remove the mass and or lower left lung lobe he coded out on the table. He was on a ventilator for little over 24 hrs and developed pneumonia. He is still recovering. His surgeon doesn't want to do another surgery but his oncologist would like us to get a second opinion in hopes surgery would be a possibility. It all depends on his pulmonary tests results to see if he could in fact tolerate and survive another surgery and survive without that part of his lung. Sadly with the way he is sounding and how easily he gets so short winded we are uncertain. If surgery is a no go it is probably going to be 6-8 weeks of radiation daily and weekly chemo. So scary so many questions after the doctor visits that seem to have to wait until the next one and so many doctors involved it is so stressful. Trying to remember there are NO DUMB QUESTIONS when we are in with the doctors and to write them down as we come up with them. Prayers for you. May we continue to find strength in one another as we all fight this battle with our loved ones or for those who are the patients.

Alisa Cahill
A

How is your dad doing today?

Colleen Cummins 3 years

Where are you from?

Lori Ferreira
L

We live in Bethesda, maryland just outside of Washington DC

Colleen Cummins 3 years

My mom was not a candidate for her squamous NSCLC due to the location of her tumor and it's proximity to her bronchial and aortic valves. She also had only borderline pulmonary function and a lobectomy was not a viable option. We could only do chemo/radiation which did shrink her tumor over 50% upon completion and we have a recheck CT scan in February. Until then we carry on and since completing her treatment, although weakened and 25lbs lighter, she carries on.

Darlene Strickland
D

Wow 25#'s I don't think my Dad could lose that much weight. Ugh!

Colleen Cummins 3 years

Can't be stage 4. Can't be wrapped around mediastinal area, can't have mets. I have all 3 strikes

Marla Sloan
M

What about immunotherapy? I don't know anything about it but I thought I would mention it.

Colleen Cummins 3 years

That could be a possibility. I'm on Keytruda, one dose so far. There are parameters she would have to meet. Be stage 4 w/ mets, test positive for the right genetic defect. I don't remember off the top of my head if this is me or what Keytruda needs, never smoker and involve the mediastinal area ( the tissue kind of under your sternum that holds your 2 lungs together as well as the esophagus and trachea in place. To test for genetic defects, the doctor would do a bronchoscopy and samples to send out for testing, takes approx 3 weeks to get results back. You might also come back eligible for target therapy which is 1 pill a day.. The genetic defects I speak of, are not heredity genetics, but rather cells that were doing there thing and all of a sudden something flipped a switch and cells forgot how to use their immune system, and things go haywire, and now you have cancer. Keytruda is used for other cancers, but they still have to have the right genetic defect. President Carter is on it.

Marla Sloan
M

Its kind of boils down to the cancer in your dad has already spread. If you remove the lung, (which by the way would not be fun and recovery is hard) The cancers cells have already moved on. If you can;t get them all, then no doctor would put a patient through that kind of surgery unless there was another problem that lung was having.. I'm so sorry. I lost my dad 3.5 years ago to sepsis, I can understand your pain. Hugs and Prayers

Marla Sloan
M

My dads is the same as yours. Got diagnosed with stage 4 squamous cell carcinoma in a few lymph notes and adrenal glands. He finish chemo and targeted chemo and it shrank by half while doing them. But found out today its grew bigger than before. Find out tomorrow what his next options are.

Kathleen Peacock
K