My sister Debra had a lung transplant in February, 2008 at Toronto General Hospital, Toronto, Ontario Canada after having had IV stage B.A.C lung cancer (the kind that is least invasive to the body outside of the lungs).
She just went for her 7th year post transplant check-up and is considered "stable".
Does anyone know of or has anyone heard of anyone in their 8th year of post lung transplant life after having had B.A.C lung cancer?
Her Dr.'s at Toronto General call her "the miracle lady".
Reply # - February 26, 2015, 11:20 AM
Hi Laurie, Welcome to Grace.
How wonderful to be the sister of and better yet be the miracle lady! I will make sure Dr. West sees this post. He's the founder of Grace and one of the top specialists of BAC so he'll be the person here with the most knowledge of what's happened in the field.
The little I know transplant isn't at all a standard of care for those with BAC because it never showed enough benefit. It seems your sister is an exception.
Personally I'm feeling the relief of my husband being an exception as well. He was diagnosed in 09 with stage IV lung cancer after receiving curative chemo/rads for squamous cell nsclc and was very ill. Tuesday he received an all clear scan making it 2 1/2 years of consecutive clean scans without treatment.
It happens all to seldom that people bet the odds but it's always marvelous to hear a story like your sisters. We are the truly lucky ones and I look forward as more and more people join the ranks on this side of the spectrum as better treatments are developed.
Reply # - February 27, 2015, 02:26 PM
Thank you so much for responding - we both have a lot to be grateful indeed!
It seems that with each hurdle, my sister and her husband (advocate extraordinaire) work diligently through the necessary problem solving to get a resolution.
I'm so pleased to read about your husband receiving an "all clear" scan for 2 1/2 years - what a blessing for your family!
We are a very faithful family (my husband has been a Reverend since 1975 and I will be ordained in June of this year) and pray quite earnestly and with conviction for my dearly loved sister every day - sometimes many times during the day actually.
I look forward to reading Dr. West's reaction to my sister's survival story.
God bless you and your husband,
Reply # - February 27, 2015, 04:47 PM
Oh thanks Laurie for the reminder, I promised I'd poke Dr. West but let it slide. I'm really sorry for that I'm usually better plugged in, so to speak. Your sister’s is a unique situation and since it’s in Dr. W’s wheelhouse should be seen by him.
The next bit is TMI but is new info and not yet expressly written. :) AKA, The biggest excuse ever written:
Dr. West is really trying to be more hands off because his part has become really time consuming for one who is already busy. Jim, other contributing members and I have more than an ordinary amount of lay person knowledge on the subject and we know the site so we can serve as librarian to others. So much has already been written about and can serve as answers to really so many questions. The real educated experts are those oncologists who give their time to Grace in hopes more and more people become participating members in the care and decision making team.
If you're old enough and know how cancer care has and is changing since Nixon's War on Cancer (my dad passed from cancer March 1970 having never gotten treatment) you know how lucky we are to have our oncologists on Grace who want to help make the change to patient/family centered decision making.
So Grace is in the process of moving from every thread being responded to by an oncologist (usually our busiest of peeps) to a handful of lay peeps with several of our finest oncs ready in the wings when needed.
I leave your thread alone now with only hopes and dreams of continued good scans for our loved ones.
Reply # - February 27, 2015, 07:03 PM
The problem with reports on lung transplantation for BAC is that they are relatively short-term follow up of a few years, and patients are doing well, but MANY patients could be doing well from BAC a few years later no matter what you do or don't do. As the "miracle" status of your sister indicates, good long term results haven't been the rule, but people don't tend to rush to report the disappointing long-term results after many of the promising early reports, so we're left to wonder "where are they now?", like a child TV star you never heard from again.
I'm happy she's done so well. That's the exception, but great for her, and you!