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Staging/Treatments

My sister has been diagnosed with stage 3 Ovarian cancer Dec. 08. She had her ovaries removed, and after 6 months of chemo, the cancer has returned. Would this still be considered Ovarian cancer if it is on the bowel now? Is there any other treatments besides additional chemo? On the average, how fast does stage 3 cancer travel and will it go to the lungs next? I will attempt to contact her dr. this week however I wanted to consult someone else first to compare both responses so I can be prepared. He has given her an est. 2-3 years.How do doctors determine the length of time someone has to live. [So many times you hear stories of the patient living so much longer] We will be scheduling a second opinion in Phila. soon. In the meantime, any response to all of the above questions would be appreciated. Sorry for so many questions.
Thank you.
sak
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272338 tn?1252280404
Yes the others have given you excellent advice. I was diagnoses stage IV ovarian cancer in Nov 2005. As you can see, that was 3 years ago. the Drs cannot give you a specific time line, only statistics. But we all have the chance to be those few who blow the statistics away. I have been on chemo now for 3 years and am doing fine. So do not let the thought of chemo discourage you. Mine is also being treated as a chronic disease. Also try to get that time line out of your head because they really do not know.
  I wish you luck on the second opinion and may she become one of those who beats the odds.
  Chris
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Avatar universal
I have stage 3 ovarian cancer for 6yrs im Taking chemo every 2 wks to live and maintain the cancer.I also see a good herbalist and take minerals after a hair analysis to tell what my body is missing. Dont give up but fight and use all options
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315 tn?1230998574
You have gotten some very good advice. All that has been said is very true.  No Onc or Dr. will be able to give a date as to how much time she has left.  I was dx. in 11/04 and am currently having my 3rd recurrence. I treat my disease as a chronic condition.  When it rears it's ugly head I beat it back down with more chemo.  I have never had a second  debulking surgery. I did have a second look/colostomy reversal surgery 7 months after my initail surgery and it was found to still have remaining spots of cancer,so then it took another 6 cycles of Doxil but it gave me 13 months of remission time. I wish you the best ~~~Joanne
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Avatar universal
If she has cancer come back from the ovary then it is still metastatic ovarian cancer. No one knows how long someone will live with recurrent ovarian cancer. The cancer can grow very slow or very fast. Get the pathology reports and read them. What I have read is that grade 3 or undifferentiated cancers are more aggressive and generally grow faster. I also read that Serous cell type is more favorable for treating a recurrence. Again these are general statements and do not always hold on a case by case basis. If it is recurrent ovarian cancer it is usually treated with more chemotherapy. If she responds well she could have another remission. Other options can be additional surgery, radiation, etc., depending on how much cancer there is and where it is. My sister had pelvic cancer after second debulking and had radiation since her first line chemo didn't work. Radiation really shrunk the cancer but in the mean time it spread other places. There are some cases where women don't respond well to carbo/taxol and then respond better to doxil or one of the other second line chemotherapies. You may want to ask the Dr. if she is platinum resistant or sensitive as she may be able to have platinum, cisplatin, carboplatin, etc, again. If she was optimally debulked, how much tumor remained after surgery, or not would be another good question related to how she responded to chemotherapy. Stage at this point doesn't matter. My sister was a stage 2C but had very fast aggressive cancer. She didn't get any remission. Some women with stage 4 have been cured and many with recurrent cancer live many years. There are many chemotherapy drugs to try.  This was a lot of info so sorry if I confused you. Post your question on the ask the dr. forum. Dr Goodman has excellent advice. Provide details on stage, cell type, grade, CA-125 numbers, etc., so she can give the best advice. They only take a few questions a day so be persistant. Sorry the news isn't better.
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Avatar universal
Sorry that you and your family are going through such a hard time!  To answer your questions I'll start with the first one.  Yes, it is still ovarian cancer.  It is very common to spread to the bowels.  Chemotherapy is probably her only option at this time.  She recurred so soon after her first line chemo and a second surgery wouldn't be advised.  Radiation would not be an option around any of the bowel area.  It could damage the bowels and cause many complications.  The only way the doctor can determine how fast her cancer will spread is the grade of tumor she has. 1, 2 or 3.  3 being the most aggressive, sometimes grade 3 tumor responds well to chemo.  Chemo is designed for fast growing cells.  Although I have many sisters living with this disease for more than 13 years with grade 1 tumor.  I don't think it will travel to her lungs next.  But all cases are different.  A doctor will tell you what he thinks about her prognosis.  It doesn't  necessarily mean that she will pass away during that time frame.  You are right, there are stories of many survivors that were given a short time to live and are still here today! A second opinion is a good idea.  Blessings....hope this helps...Cindy
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Avatar universal
i imagine she was diagnosed in dec 07 since she already had surgery and chemo.  When ovarian comes back a person can see many treatments and remissions and be in a chronic state but is never cured. just the nature of the cancer.  I was given 2 years and am now 2 years and 3 months and still in remission.  doctors do not know.  You must seek the best centers sometimes for the best treatments.  Not all doctors stay on top of all the is available.  do research with trials and ask alot of questions.
good luck
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