Testicular Cancer Help

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This topic contains 3 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by JimC Forum Moderator JimC Forum Moderator 4 months ago.

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April 16, 2017 at 7:40 pm  #1290587    

tiach14

Hi,

I am 20 years old and about 7 weeks ago I was diagnosed with testicular cancer. I had my left testicle removed and the surgery went very well. I met with my oncologist and he told me I had a stage 1 non seminoma tumour that was part embryonal, part yolk sac, and part teratoma, that had not metastasized outside the tumour itself. I am hoping for some advice on whether I should do chemotherapy or just the active surveillance. My oncologist recommends chemotherapy because my tumour marker AFP was at 11.7 two weeks after surgery and he informed me that anything over 8 was considered abnormal and was suspicious. I requested another blood test and found that my AFP level had dropped to 3.7 and I was relieved because I thought that meant no chemo. My oncologist is still pushing me towards chemo but I really want to opt for the active surveillance. I also talked to my urologist, who has been extremely helpful through this whole journey, and he told me that both chemotherapy and active surveillance would be a reasonable choice, and that it’s just about how I want to go about it. I know that at the end of the day its my decision but I’m having a hard time trying to decide because I’m scared of making the wrong decision and possibly putting myself in an unwanted situation. I would really appreciate some advice on how to approach this.

Thank you for taking the time to read.

T. I

April 17, 2017 at 6:50 am  #1290596    
JimC Forum Moderator
JimC Forum Moderator

Hi T. I,

Welcome to GRACE. I’m sorry to hear of your diagnosis, but I am heartened that it was caught in an early stage and that surgery went well. The question of whether to have post-operative (adjuvant) chemotherapy after surgery for early-stage cancer is always difficult, and there is no right or wrong answer. The goal is to eradicate any remaining cancer cells present in the body, but the choice is made without knowing whether those cells actually exist. Some patients who aren’t cured with surgery are cured with adjuvant therapy, while for those whose cancer has been completely removed with surgery, chemo provides no additional benefit. Of course,, chemo can be difficult in terms of side effects, and that’s certainly a factor to consider, although perhaps less onerous in a younger, fit patient.

Although we can’t tell you what to do, one route you could take is to obtain a second opinion from another oncologist, just to see how important they feel adjuvant therapy might be,

Good luck.

JimC
Forum moderator


Jul 2008 Wife Liz (51/never smoker) Dx Stage IV NSCLC EGFR exon 19
4 cycles Carbo/alimta, 65% shrinkage
Tarceva maintenance
Mar 2010 progression, added Alimta, stable
Sep 2010 multiple brain mets, WBR
Oct 2010 large pericardial effusion, tamponade
Jan 2011 progression, start abraxane
Jun 2011-New liver, brain mets, add Tarceva
Oct 2011-Dx Leptomeningeal carcinomatosis; pulsed Tarceva
At rest Nov 4 2011
Since then: http://cancergrace.org/blog/jim-and-lisa

April 18, 2017 at 7:18 pm  #1290601    

tiach14

Hi Jim,

I have discussed this again with my oncologist and I decided to go with the surveillance in the hopes that I won’t have any further issues.

Thanks for the help!

Tony.

April 19, 2017 at 6:06 am  #1290602    
JimC Forum Moderator
JimC Forum Moderator

Hi Tony,

Glad that you were able to have another discussion, and I hope that you and cancer have parted ways for good.

JimC
Forum moderator


Jul 2008 Wife Liz (51/never smoker) Dx Stage IV NSCLC EGFR exon 19
4 cycles Carbo/alimta, 65% shrinkage
Tarceva maintenance
Mar 2010 progression, added Alimta, stable
Sep 2010 multiple brain mets, WBR
Oct 2010 large pericardial effusion, tamponade
Jan 2011 progression, start abraxane
Jun 2011-New liver, brain mets, add Tarceva
Oct 2011-Dx Leptomeningeal carcinomatosis; pulsed Tarceva
At rest Nov 4 2011
Since then: http://cancergrace.org/blog/jim-and-lisa

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