Stage 3B Lung Cancer. What kind of re... - The Roy Castle Lu...

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Stage 3B Lung Cancer. What kind of results to expect after chemo



My mom was diagnosed with stage 3B Lung cancer back in May. This cancer is a reoccurrence, she has had two partial lobectomy’s back in 2011/2012. She is has never smoked and was negative for all the genetic markers.She has finished three rounds of chemo and IV immunotherapy and recently had a CT scan showing no change . According to the doctor this is still “ good news” considering the tumors have not gotten larger . The plan is to continue the chemo . My mom has really been struggling with the chemo side effects but has a strong will and continues to fight. I’m a little dissapointed... what are the expectations as far as results go after a few sessions of chemo? Does anyone know if this is common and if this is part of the process ? . I guess I was hoping for a little change in the size of the tumors. Thanks for your input in advance.

8 Replies

Hi Tuhtuhtina, sorry to hear about your mum. I am afraid I cant give much advice as my cancers were different and I had surgery and chemo. Which I am fortunate to be clear now. The chemo was terrible at the time.

It is a bit early to expect massive changes as chemo takes a while to work and to find out if it has made a difference. I would suggest you have a word with your mums lung cancer nurse, who is there for your mum and family to help and advise.

I wish your mum well. :) x

Tuhtuhtina in reply to jillygirl

Thanks so much for your reply 😊

Congrats on your remission!

My husband had chemotherapy and his ct scan after the four sessions showed a very good response.

This was a different form of lung cancer though and everyone responds differently.

I would try and hold on to the consultant saying this is good news.

Good morning. I’m sorry about your mom. I do want to say that depending on the type of lung cancer she has...most chemo therapy is used to enhance RADIATION to shrink tumors. At least that’s what they told me at my cancer center. If the goal is to cure the cancer then you might want to seek a second “treatment opinion” to make sure they are being aggressive enough. If she has had radiation in the past then she might be limited as to how much she can have. I’ve heard many stories about people just having one treatment or the other but it seems the best long term results come from dual therapies. Chemo didn’t change the size of my orange sized tumor. Radiation turned it into a peanut m&m. It’s never a bad idea to get more than one opinion especially with cancer treatments. Cancer centers tend to be more up to date on the newest treatments than hospitals are. Depending on where you are I might be able to get you a Center recommendation from my Center (John Theurer Cancer Center Hackensack NJ) and maybe you can get some answers.

Be well and all the best to your mom.

We are in Soutbern California, thanks so much for your input .

Wow then you have a ton of options. I hope everything works out well for you. Best of luck

So much mixed information, I’m not sure which places are reliable. I will look into JTCC to see if there is anything near. Thank you!


Dear Tuhtuhtina

Sorry to hear about your Mum and the journey she is having with all the treatments.

It is so difficult to standardise peoples responses to treatment, as it depends on many factors. i.e the health they were in prior to starting treatment, any other health conditions, dose tolerance and side effects.

It is encouraging the tumour has not got any bigger, however understandable your disappointment that it has not reduced.

It may be with a few more cycles, this may reduce. If your Mum is willing and able to tolerate the chemotherapy at present.

Your Mum may wish to consider asking about any clinical trials available, after her treatment, if you both feel that you would like to have other options.

The American Lung Association have a list of trials:


If you wish to discuss anything you are welcome to call us on our free nurse led helpline number in the UK 0800 358 7200

In America, the helpline cancer care may be of assistance 1-888-793-9355

Kind regards

The Roy Castle Support Team

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