19-03-2010 01:59 PM
I totally agree, I wanted to know how they could be happy to stop treatment of herceptin without doing some sort of scan/check/test anything to see if there was any evidence of the cancer at all.
Hello mnc just to let you know I didnt experience any heart problems on herceptin at all, in fact my reading improved on my second test so everyone reacts differently. I would look at the positives of this drug rather than the negatives.
19-03-2010 11:18 AM
I had a 4 month break after 13 Herceptins from June to September 2009 due to the heart LVEF reading having dropped to 42%. I was not experiencing any other symptoms of heart failure such as shortage of breath and fluid retention. I was advised by the cardio ologist not to have any more herceptin but because of my grade 3 cancer with lymph node involvement I was determined to finish the course and luckily my oncologist was in agreement. My heart function rose to 59% without medication and I resumed the Herceptin and finished the 17th herceptin on Xmas Eve 2009. I appreciate not everyone has the opportunity to complete the full course and as mentioned in previous posts, trials are now taking place to see if six months of herceptin is sufficient as opposed to a years treatment. My oncologist is of the opinion that six months is sufficient but because he believes mental wellbeing to be as equally important as body wellbeing I was able to complete my course. At the moment I am classed as No Evidence of Disease but remain ever vigilant for any indication that the cancer may have returned.
19-03-2010 10:32 AM
Hi Tracey and everyone
I'm at the lister hosp in Stevenage at the moment waiting for my 3rd fec. I'm meant to be having taxotere in three weeks time along with my first herceptin.
I'm worried as all I read about Herceptin is heart failure. Tracey, what were the symptoms and are you fully recovered from the effects of herceptin?
I'm so glad you have finished your treatment and send love to you and everyone.
19-03-2010 08:09 AM
I was initially diagnosed Feb 06. 41 yrs. IDC Grade 3, Stage 3, 3cm Tumor ER 7/8 PR -. Herceptin ++++. 6 Lymph nodes with Cancer after full node clearance and full Radical Mastectomy. 1 node + sentinel node superclavicle.
4 x Epirubicin
4 x CMf.
13/17 Herceltin. Was not allowed any more as I went into heart failure!!
I have just posted in after treatment has finished. Went to Onc yesterday and he does not wish to see me for 12 months .... I can tell you I came out of his office on a high..
My prognosis at the time was not good if you looked at the NPI....
everyone is an indvidual and we all deal differently with each stage of our journey
But yes there is light at the end of the tunnel......
If you have any questions pls feel free to pm me and I will get back to you....
Love to you all
19-03-2010 12:10 AM
The specialist nurse at our Herceptin clinic appointment said there have been trials that have shown that one year of Herceptin treatment is just as effective as two years of treatment in reducing the risk of recurrence in early breast cancer. (Apparently there is a trial going ahead to see whether six months would also be as effective.)
When I asked some time ago (at the beginning of Janet's six months of chemo) about whether she will get scans, the answer was basically that, by the time a tumour would show up on a scan, there would probably already be other noticeable symptoms, and at this stage any escaped cancer cells would not be detectable in a scan.
I have seen no published evidence to confirm these views, but putting these two points together, it all does seem to make sense.
18-03-2010 10:03 PM
Yes me too, I am part of this group Her2+ grade 3. I was dx June 08 which was followed with WLE, 3 x Fec, 3 x Tax, 25 rads and then 18 Herceptin. I didn't still don't fully understand this Her 2+ but was pleased when I heard I would be receiving Herceptin. I must admit the only thing I had heard of it was on the news that there were ladies in this country fighting for the right to be given this drug Herceptin, so I actually felt lucky to be receiving it!!
I received my last Herceptin December 09 and I am now treatment free, which is great and I do try to put it to the back of my mind but it still rears its ugly little head and probably always will and I must admit there are days when I am down and worried when I think shouldnt us girls who are Her2+ be given this for life to stop it coming back. I know this isn't going to happen but I was willing to throw anything at this thing to help get rid of it and prevent it from coming back.
Good luck and best wishes to you all.
18-03-2010 08:26 PM
Hiya - I had a gr3, er-, pr-, HER3+ tumour, 1.8 cm. Had a Sentinal Node Biopsy which was clear so no positive nodes and a lumpectomy in September with clear margins. Chemo has just finished last week and radiotherapy starts at the end of April with Herceptin starting at the end of that.
No idea what the HER+ really means for me but like the other girls I feel that at least this is something that can be done about it so I will press on with the advice/treatment plan that the onc has given me. Hate the thought of all the treatment but really want to live to be a very old cranky old woman !
Good luck everyone xx
18-03-2010 01:10 PM
Hi there, i really dont know whether its strongly pos or not, result just says positive and thats from a biopsy. They say they can tell lots with a biopsy so i have to go with the positive result for now. Suppose they will no more when they do the op.
Thanks for your good wishes for tomorrow Lynn, you will know what im going through the now.
This is a good thread for everyone who is her2+ to stay in touch.
regards Anne x
18-03-2010 10:31 AM
I was grade 3 er+ pr+ her++ but i didnt have chemo or herceptin.
When you get your her2 result it is scored on a 1-3, 1 being neg and 3 being pos. I was a 2 and some hospitals call that her2 negative. However, in my hosp they then do a FISH test if you are a 2. FISH neg does not get offered herceptin but FISH positive does.
I was fish positive so I was offered herceptin. However, my onc said they could not give it without chemo, and the benefit of chemo AND herceptin together, for me, was 3% less chance of it coming back in 2 years. I was advised that the risks outweighed the benefits as I had a small lump, neg nodes, and being 8/8 for both hormones meant I was being put on zoladex and tamox anyway. My onc said if it were his wife with my results he wouldnt want her to have it.
I went with his advice and have just reached my 2 years clear.
I think herceptin benefits more if you are a +++ rather than a ++. Or perhaps node neg her2 are less agressive.....?
18-03-2010 09:51 AM
Hi Anne - i'm still waiting on final confirmation of Her2 status - been given a preliminary negative at the moment. thought i's bump it up again for you - there must be loads. Thinking of you for tomorrow.
06-03-2010 08:04 PM
Just thought I'd update you all. Still feeling a bit negative as I want to live another 30 years and my husband says I will live 30 years but feel I won't make it.
I had my second chemo on 26th February through my Port which was great apart from the fact that the nurse who administered my FEC pressed so hard that I was in pain and by the end of the week, I ended up in hospital because of the pain and breathlessness which my oncologist thought may be due to a Pulmonary Embolism.
I was at the A and E last night and given a blood thinning injection and because my white count cell count (despite having a blood boosting injection the day after Chemo) has dropped from 15 to 1.4 the nurses gave me a face mask to wear to prevent my catching anything from them.
I had another blood thinning injection today and have another tomorrow. Then on Monday they will give me a CT scan just to confirm that there is no blood clot.
I had an xray yesterday afternoon to ensure my port hadn't moved and I will say if you are offered a port - take it take it. It is fantastic no pain in the hand when chemo goes in or when bloods are taken as they can also be taken from the port.
One thing that is worry be again! is that my oncologist said yesterday that I shouldn't be going to work when on Chemotherapy. I really need to work as we need the money but have actually been signed off for a month as my philbitis is so painful.
My lovely sister has offered a room at her house while I have all my treatment of chemotherapy, radiotherapy and Herceptin. She doesn't work and my brother and mum are in Yorkshire as well. My sister will take me to all my treatments and be on call when I end up in hospital like I did this weekend.
There is only one problem, my husband who takes me to chemo doesn't want me to go as he doesn't like being on his own but I want to go.
He is a MD of a company and has complained about the time spent at the hospital, doesn't sleep well because I don't sleep well sometimes and fidgit at night. Me going to my sister's would relieve him of all the hospital trips and allow him now to be stressed and run the company without the days spent ferrying me back and forth.
I am going to post the bit about spending my chemo/radio/herceptin time with my sister in a new post in case nobody responds to this.
Hope everyone is well and surviving the horrid Chemo which actually is not that bad. Two perhaps three days of queezy feeling, no hair, dry skin, rough mouth, swollen ankles - that's about it - I can certainly cope with that.
15-02-2010 08:38 PM
I was dx in June 08 with grade 3, HER2+ IBC and had chemo first, then mx, followed by rads and a year of Herceptin.
This year I have started a year without cancer treatment so hope to be optimistic for the future. I am hoping to have a recon this year and look forward to that happening to put behind me the last 2 years.
It is daunting when first dx, but my Onc told me that these days being HER2+ is no different to non HER2+ because of Herceptin.
Tomorrow I am starting treatment for hypothyroidism, another life long illness along with diabetes, but at least I have a reason for my fatigue, feeling cold all the time, dry skin, overweight etc. etc. so I hope to enjoy a "new me" eventually.
Good luck with all your treatment
15-02-2010 06:42 PM
And another one.
I was diagnosed 1st April 09 with Inflammatory Breast Cancer and the tumour was first measured at over 12cm. (HER+ ER/PR-). Had 3 Fec/3Tax then right mastectomy and ancilliary clearance in Sept followed by 20 rads and now on herceptin. I was very lucky that no nodes were affected and the chemo reduced the tumour to 1.5cm. planning to go back to work on 1st March.
Bboonie, I would say one of the advantages of being on a trial is that you are very closely monitored. Many of us have found it hard once active treatment ends and you stop having regular meetings with your medical team. Good luck whatever you decide to do.
Night sweats are currently keeping me off my sleep. Covers on - covers off - covers on - covers off - covers on etc..... arrgh! Going back to work will be interesting. At the moment I struggle to get out of bed before 9 am. Would love to retire but at 48 there's not much chance of that.
15-02-2010 05:38 PM
I more here - Diagnosed August 09. Left Mastectomy, 2 lymph nodes affected. I have just had my last chemo (2 FEC, 3 Taxotere). I had my 1st initial planning session for radiotherapy, the 2nd due this Wednesday morning. My 1st radiotherapy due on the 24th followed by on the same day my 1st Herceptin. I am due to have 25 rads and 18 herceptin. I have been asked to take part in a research trial, to see if 6 months herceptin is as effective as 12 months. I don't know whether to take part or not, I have a meeting with the research oncologist on the 12th March is discuss it. I am 55 and I am hoping to return to work after Easter.
15-02-2010 04:20 PM
Hi Yep one more here, Dx begining Dec, op on 17th dec, found out my results last week eventually HER grade 3 Possitive ER Positive with 22 nodes removed 16 infected. I am 42 years old.
I start 8 sessions of chemo this Thursday plus herceptin, radiotherapy and tamoxifen. My tumour was 5.5.
I too came out of hospital firstly with Seroma, then now lymphodema, my onc´s adviced not to lift anything over a bag of sugar in weight and too be honest this seems to have helped.
As for sleeping, welcome to the club!!! I live with 3 grown men!!! OH and sons, who have now given up one of there rooms and now share and turned it into a girlie retreat room for me, so now I have my comp, dvd etc all set up there it´s great!!!
Good luck, Love Teresa x