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Old 09-29-2011, 05:25 AM   #1
Bunty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 465
Australian Treatments and Access

I've discovered in my short time here that there are quite a few Aussies registered, and goodness knows how many keeping an eye on us all!

I've had positive feedback from some of the Aussies about starting this thread and sharing information about treatments and access in Australia. We have a public health system which provides herceptin and tykerb at no charge through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, but there are quite a few official restrictions, e.g., if herceptin fails, and you go to tykerb, you supposedly can't go back to herceptin at another time. Also, herceptin and tykerb is not allowed to be combined (under PBS).

And we have a much smaller population, so trials for advanced BC, (much less Her2+), are minimal.

So any bits of information we can share about treatments, trials coming up, getting 'around the system', lobbying etc, I hope will be of benefit.

So maybe I'll kick it off with a question - does anyone know much about a TDM-1 trial coming to Peter McCallum Hospital in Melbourne? Or anywhere else for that matter?

Cheers Marie
__________________
dx Dec 2000 dcis 2.5cm clear sentinel node, ER/PR- Her-2+
lumpectomy, 6 cycles AC, 6 weeks rads
October 2007 three x 2.5cm lung mets. 8 months Taxol, started Herceptin and continue. Significant reduction in lung mets.
June 2011 3cm x 4cm liver tumour. Started Abraxane and continue with Herceptin.
November 2011. Finished with Abraxane, continue with just Herceptin. Liver tumour now reduced to 15mm x 12mm. Lung tumour now 10mm x 0.5mm
February 2012. Scans show everything stable, and brain scan clear.
July 2012. PET/CT scans show I'm in remission - no active cancer!
]Dec CT brain cllear, lungs stable, liver tumour has increased to 20mm. PET scans showed active liver met and active lung thinglet, and possible bone met.
Jan 2013 recommence Abraxane, continue with Herceptin.
June 2013 finish Cycle 6 Abraxane, continue with Herceptin. 30% reduction in liver tumour, everything stable.
December 2013. CA15-3 on rise.
February 2014. PET and CT scans show single liver tumour has increased to 35mm. No other activity.
March 2014. Planned for SBRT for liver met, but couldn't have treatment as tumour too close to bowel. Continue Herceptin.
April 2014. Surgeon advises that I am a good candidate for liver resection, so will have operation early May (after camping holiday). Tumour now 44mm x 29mm.
May 7, 2014. Two liver tumours surgically removed. Third of liver removed, and gall bladder. Am I NED?May 2014. Pathology of tumour shows it's now ER+ (95% staining).
June 2014. CA15-3 has decreased to 18 from a pre-surgery reading of 59!
June 2014. Started Femara, continue with Herceptin.
July 2014. Stop Femara due to severe Osteoporosis. Commence Tamoxifen, continue Herceptin. Waiting to hear if I can have Aclasta infusion.
August 2014. CA15-3 has decreased further to 12 - YAY!
October 2014. Aclasta infusion for Osteoporosis. November 2014, CA15-3 decreased to 11. Scans of liver all clear, something new showing up on lung, but just watching at the moment.
November 2015. Started SBRT on solitary lung met.
November 2015. Bone density scan showed very good improvement so back on Femara - yay!
December 2016. 6 treatments of SBRT radiation on lung. Seems to have had some effect.
June 2016. CA15-3 still stable and low at 9.
June 2016. Started subcutaneous Herceptin replacing infusion.
Jan 2017. LVEF dropped to 46%. Stopped Herceptin.
Feb 2017. Started ACE Inhibitor and BETA Blocker. Still off Herceptin.
Aug 2017. Two new mets - Portacaval lymph node and mediastinal lymph node.
Aug 2017. Blood tests show extremely elevated liver enzyme levels. Many tests to investigate.
Sept 2017. Portacaval lymph node blocking liver bile duct causing liver enzyme and Bilirubin problems.
Oct 2017. 8cm stent inserted into liver bile duct. Procedure caused pancreatitis, and hospitalised for 3 days. Liver enzymes improving rapidly.
Nov 2017. Commenced 4 weeks of radiation on Portacaval lymph node. 5 week break before chemo.
Jan 2018. CT scan. 11 new small liver mets, and new superclavical lymph node med.
Jan 2018. Start Kadcyla. CA15-3 426.
Apr 2018. First scans since starting Kadcyla. All tumours reducing. CA15-3 dropped to 30 from 426.
Dec 2019. Still on Kadcyla, but two small brain mets have been treated in the past month with SRS. CA15-3 stable for 12 months at 11.
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Old 10-01-2011, 04:52 AM   #2
Trish
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 434
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Hi Bunty
Thanks for starting the thread. I'm treated at Peter Mc and my understanding is the TDM-1 trial here is only for first line metastatic treatment so I am definitely not eligible. I don't think you would be given you are having Taxol but am unsure. I have been quizzing my oncologist about it for a long time and she has been checking with her colleagues who have closer links to Genentech. So far the answer is TDM-1 is not likely to be available till 2013. There is a trial for heavily pre treated met patients (like me) starting up in US (? THERESA with the second E backwards) but my onc hasn't heard about it being available in Australia. Will ask her again about the current TDM-1 trial on Wednesday and hopefully get some written info for you in a link.
Secondly the rules around Herceptin have changed. You can get it now after Tykerb because the PBS recognises there is benefit of Herceptin beyond progression.I was switched to Tykerb/Xeloda (?late 2009ish) and it worked for a year but then my tumours grew and I could no longer have it. I couldn't get Herceptin funded at that time but got some via a trial. The rules changed last year so now I have it funded by PBS. So my message is switching to Tykerb/Xeloda (if clinically warranted)is not as risky now as you can switch back to Herceptin if the combo doesn't work for you. The onc has to do a bit of paper work but it is achievable.
Trish
__________________
5/2004 (R) 30mm bre gr3 infiltrating ductal ca 16/18nodes er (2+) pr (3+) HER2 (3+)
6/2004
6 cycles(FEC), Oct 40 rads, Tamoxifen
5/2006
oopherectomy, Arimedex
12/2006
liver mets largest 9cm
1/2007
Herceptin,
3/2007
Taxol + Herc
1/2008
Herc alone
4/2008
Multiple bone mets,Zometa
7/2008
Herc + Gemcitabine
8/2008
Herc+Navelbine/vinoralbine
10/2008
Herc+Carboplatin+Taxol
12/2008
Tykerb+Xeloda
2/2010
Herceptin + trial drug
5/2010
Herceptin+Tykerb
8/2010
Tykerb+Abraxane
9/2010
Abraxane
12/2010
Abraxane+Tyk+Herc
4/2011
Tyk+Herc+Femara
6/2011
Liver and bone mets prog.Abraxane continue Herceptin,Tykerb,Femara and Zometa
8/2011
Probable liver progression and increased neuropathy. Xeloda with Tyk+Herc. Zometa 6 weekly.
9/2011
Liver progression,TM +++. Cyclophosphamide and Methotrexate metro Herc Zometa
10/2011 liver mets prog.Herc, 3 Tykerb +2mg decodron daily,Zometa
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Old 10-01-2011, 08:26 PM   #3
Bunty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 465
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Thanks Trish for the update - I'm very pleased to read about switching back to Herceptin, although I thought it's not funded to have both treatments at the same time. So when you switched back to Herceptin, did you keep taking the Tykerb?

Based on what you have said about TDM-1 trial, I too wouldn't be eligible. You would think based on all the trials going on in the US the PBS would use those findings to base their funding. (Maybe that happens in some cases....)

Well I'm happy that I've learned something from you Trish!

Cheers Marie
__________________
dx Dec 2000 dcis 2.5cm clear sentinel node, ER/PR- Her-2+
lumpectomy, 6 cycles AC, 6 weeks rads
October 2007 three x 2.5cm lung mets. 8 months Taxol, started Herceptin and continue. Significant reduction in lung mets.
June 2011 3cm x 4cm liver tumour. Started Abraxane and continue with Herceptin.
November 2011. Finished with Abraxane, continue with just Herceptin. Liver tumour now reduced to 15mm x 12mm. Lung tumour now 10mm x 0.5mm
February 2012. Scans show everything stable, and brain scan clear.
July 2012. PET/CT scans show I'm in remission - no active cancer!
]Dec CT brain cllear, lungs stable, liver tumour has increased to 20mm. PET scans showed active liver met and active lung thinglet, and possible bone met.
Jan 2013 recommence Abraxane, continue with Herceptin.
June 2013 finish Cycle 6 Abraxane, continue with Herceptin. 30% reduction in liver tumour, everything stable.
December 2013. CA15-3 on rise.
February 2014. PET and CT scans show single liver tumour has increased to 35mm. No other activity.
March 2014. Planned for SBRT for liver met, but couldn't have treatment as tumour too close to bowel. Continue Herceptin.
April 2014. Surgeon advises that I am a good candidate for liver resection, so will have operation early May (after camping holiday). Tumour now 44mm x 29mm.
May 7, 2014. Two liver tumours surgically removed. Third of liver removed, and gall bladder. Am I NED?May 2014. Pathology of tumour shows it's now ER+ (95% staining).
June 2014. CA15-3 has decreased to 18 from a pre-surgery reading of 59!
June 2014. Started Femara, continue with Herceptin.
July 2014. Stop Femara due to severe Osteoporosis. Commence Tamoxifen, continue Herceptin. Waiting to hear if I can have Aclasta infusion.
August 2014. CA15-3 has decreased further to 12 - YAY!
October 2014. Aclasta infusion for Osteoporosis. November 2014, CA15-3 decreased to 11. Scans of liver all clear, something new showing up on lung, but just watching at the moment.
November 2015. Started SBRT on solitary lung met.
November 2015. Bone density scan showed very good improvement so back on Femara - yay!
December 2016. 6 treatments of SBRT radiation on lung. Seems to have had some effect.
June 2016. CA15-3 still stable and low at 9.
June 2016. Started subcutaneous Herceptin replacing infusion.
Jan 2017. LVEF dropped to 46%. Stopped Herceptin.
Feb 2017. Started ACE Inhibitor and BETA Blocker. Still off Herceptin.
Aug 2017. Two new mets - Portacaval lymph node and mediastinal lymph node.
Aug 2017. Blood tests show extremely elevated liver enzyme levels. Many tests to investigate.
Sept 2017. Portacaval lymph node blocking liver bile duct causing liver enzyme and Bilirubin problems.
Oct 2017. 8cm stent inserted into liver bile duct. Procedure caused pancreatitis, and hospitalised for 3 days. Liver enzymes improving rapidly.
Nov 2017. Commenced 4 weeks of radiation on Portacaval lymph node. 5 week break before chemo.
Jan 2018. CT scan. 11 new small liver mets, and new superclavical lymph node med.
Jan 2018. Start Kadcyla. CA15-3 426.
Apr 2018. First scans since starting Kadcyla. All tumours reducing. CA15-3 dropped to 30 from 426.
Dec 2019. Still on Kadcyla, but two small brain mets have been treated in the past month with SRS. CA15-3 stable for 12 months at 11.
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Old 10-02-2011, 04:45 AM   #4
Trish
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 434
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

I did take Herceptin and Tykerb together for a time but I either paid for the Tykerb (very expensive) or the drug company (GlaxoSmithKline) gave me some. Should you be in the position of wanting the two together do get your onc to ask the drug rep for some. A friend of mine (who had worked for the MS society) suggested asking and my onc was a little surprised but she did ask and I got quite a lot free. So worth a try if necessary. Thankfully things seem to be stable for you so fingers crossed not necessary.
Trish
__________________
5/2004 (R) 30mm bre gr3 infiltrating ductal ca 16/18nodes er (2+) pr (3+) HER2 (3+)
6/2004
6 cycles(FEC), Oct 40 rads, Tamoxifen
5/2006
oopherectomy, Arimedex
12/2006
liver mets largest 9cm
1/2007
Herceptin,
3/2007
Taxol + Herc
1/2008
Herc alone
4/2008
Multiple bone mets,Zometa
7/2008
Herc + Gemcitabine
8/2008
Herc+Navelbine/vinoralbine
10/2008
Herc+Carboplatin+Taxol
12/2008
Tykerb+Xeloda
2/2010
Herceptin + trial drug
5/2010
Herceptin+Tykerb
8/2010
Tykerb+Abraxane
9/2010
Abraxane
12/2010
Abraxane+Tyk+Herc
4/2011
Tyk+Herc+Femara
6/2011
Liver and bone mets prog.Abraxane continue Herceptin,Tykerb,Femara and Zometa
8/2011
Probable liver progression and increased neuropathy. Xeloda with Tyk+Herc. Zometa 6 weekly.
9/2011
Liver progression,TM +++. Cyclophosphamide and Methotrexate metro Herc Zometa
10/2011 liver mets prog.Herc, 3 Tykerb +2mg decodron daily,Zometa
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Old 10-06-2011, 11:44 PM   #5
Mandamoo
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 432
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

I was chatting to my oncologist about treatments and PBS. She said sadly that she believes the total blockade approach is the way of the future and that she doesn't believe the government will ever fund that - we are going to have to get loud to be heard. I think this frightens me the most - the lack of access to trying different meds that may help us in various combinations.
I guess for now trials are the go wherever possible but sometimes the parameters to get accepted are too difficult. I looked at the TDM1 trial but we felt the risk of being in the taxol herceptin arm was too big a risk for me so I am now on the Bolero trial and so far having a partial response. I am still ever so hopeful for some time NED.
__________________
Amanda xx
40 year old Mum to three gorgeous kids - son 5 and daughters 8 and 11
Wife to my wonderfully supportive husband of 17 years!
22 February 2011 - Diagnosed Early Breast Cancer IDBC Stage2b (ER/PR -ve, Her2+ve +++) - 38 years old
(L) skin sparing mastectomy with tissue expander, axilla clearance (2/14 affected) clear margins.
Fec*3, Taxotere and herceptin*2 - stopped due to secondary diagnosis

June 24 2011 Stage IV - Skin met, axilla node, multiple lung lesions

Bolero3 trial - Navelbine, Hereptin weekly, daily Everolimus/Placebo
February 2012 - July 2012 Tykerb and Xeloda - skin mets resolved, Lungs initially dramatically reduced but growing again
August 2012 (turn 40!) tykerb and herceptin (denied compassionate use of TDM1) while holidaying in Italy!
September 2012 - January 2013 TDM1 as part of the Th3resa trial - lymph nodes resolved, lungs slowly progressing.
January 2013 - herceptin, carboplatin and Perjeta (compassionate access)
April 2013 - Some progression in lungs and lymph nodes - Abraxane, Herceptin and Perjeta
July 2013 - mixed response - dramatic reduction of most lung disease, progression of smaller lung nodules and cervical and hilar nodes - ? Add avastin.
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Old 10-07-2011, 12:45 AM   #6
Trish
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 434
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Amanda
Hopefully the blockade approach will get cheaper as the drugs come out of patent-a long time away I know. So stay well till then!
TDM-1 will hopefully become available on PBS in 2013. You and Marie have quite a few chemo options to work through should they be required so I'm hoping neither of you will require it (if you ever require it) till then.
Trish
__________________
5/2004 (R) 30mm bre gr3 infiltrating ductal ca 16/18nodes er (2+) pr (3+) HER2 (3+)
6/2004
6 cycles(FEC), Oct 40 rads, Tamoxifen
5/2006
oopherectomy, Arimedex
12/2006
liver mets largest 9cm
1/2007
Herceptin,
3/2007
Taxol + Herc
1/2008
Herc alone
4/2008
Multiple bone mets,Zometa
7/2008
Herc + Gemcitabine
8/2008
Herc+Navelbine/vinoralbine
10/2008
Herc+Carboplatin+Taxol
12/2008
Tykerb+Xeloda
2/2010
Herceptin + trial drug
5/2010
Herceptin+Tykerb
8/2010
Tykerb+Abraxane
9/2010
Abraxane
12/2010
Abraxane+Tyk+Herc
4/2011
Tyk+Herc+Femara
6/2011
Liver and bone mets prog.Abraxane continue Herceptin,Tykerb,Femara and Zometa
8/2011
Probable liver progression and increased neuropathy. Xeloda with Tyk+Herc. Zometa 6 weekly.
9/2011
Liver progression,TM +++. Cyclophosphamide and Methotrexate metro Herc Zometa
10/2011 liver mets prog.Herc, 3 Tykerb +2mg decodron daily,Zometa
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Old 10-07-2011, 10:57 PM   #7
Bunty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 465
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Thanks Amanda for the update. I have searched on the forum for the meaning of 'total blockade' but can't find a clear explanation. Can you or Trish enlighten me?
Cheers Marie
__________________
dx Dec 2000 dcis 2.5cm clear sentinel node, ER/PR- Her-2+
lumpectomy, 6 cycles AC, 6 weeks rads
October 2007 three x 2.5cm lung mets. 8 months Taxol, started Herceptin and continue. Significant reduction in lung mets.
June 2011 3cm x 4cm liver tumour. Started Abraxane and continue with Herceptin.
November 2011. Finished with Abraxane, continue with just Herceptin. Liver tumour now reduced to 15mm x 12mm. Lung tumour now 10mm x 0.5mm
February 2012. Scans show everything stable, and brain scan clear.
July 2012. PET/CT scans show I'm in remission - no active cancer!
]Dec CT brain cllear, lungs stable, liver tumour has increased to 20mm. PET scans showed active liver met and active lung thinglet, and possible bone met.
Jan 2013 recommence Abraxane, continue with Herceptin.
June 2013 finish Cycle 6 Abraxane, continue with Herceptin. 30% reduction in liver tumour, everything stable.
December 2013. CA15-3 on rise.
February 2014. PET and CT scans show single liver tumour has increased to 35mm. No other activity.
March 2014. Planned for SBRT for liver met, but couldn't have treatment as tumour too close to bowel. Continue Herceptin.
April 2014. Surgeon advises that I am a good candidate for liver resection, so will have operation early May (after camping holiday). Tumour now 44mm x 29mm.
May 7, 2014. Two liver tumours surgically removed. Third of liver removed, and gall bladder. Am I NED?May 2014. Pathology of tumour shows it's now ER+ (95% staining).
June 2014. CA15-3 has decreased to 18 from a pre-surgery reading of 59!
June 2014. Started Femara, continue with Herceptin.
July 2014. Stop Femara due to severe Osteoporosis. Commence Tamoxifen, continue Herceptin. Waiting to hear if I can have Aclasta infusion.
August 2014. CA15-3 has decreased further to 12 - YAY!
October 2014. Aclasta infusion for Osteoporosis. November 2014, CA15-3 decreased to 11. Scans of liver all clear, something new showing up on lung, but just watching at the moment.
November 2015. Started SBRT on solitary lung met.
November 2015. Bone density scan showed very good improvement so back on Femara - yay!
December 2016. 6 treatments of SBRT radiation on lung. Seems to have had some effect.
June 2016. CA15-3 still stable and low at 9.
June 2016. Started subcutaneous Herceptin replacing infusion.
Jan 2017. LVEF dropped to 46%. Stopped Herceptin.
Feb 2017. Started ACE Inhibitor and BETA Blocker. Still off Herceptin.
Aug 2017. Two new mets - Portacaval lymph node and mediastinal lymph node.
Aug 2017. Blood tests show extremely elevated liver enzyme levels. Many tests to investigate.
Sept 2017. Portacaval lymph node blocking liver bile duct causing liver enzyme and Bilirubin problems.
Oct 2017. 8cm stent inserted into liver bile duct. Procedure caused pancreatitis, and hospitalised for 3 days. Liver enzymes improving rapidly.
Nov 2017. Commenced 4 weeks of radiation on Portacaval lymph node. 5 week break before chemo.
Jan 2018. CT scan. 11 new small liver mets, and new superclavical lymph node med.
Jan 2018. Start Kadcyla. CA15-3 426.
Apr 2018. First scans since starting Kadcyla. All tumours reducing. CA15-3 dropped to 30 from 426.
Dec 2019. Still on Kadcyla, but two small brain mets have been treated in the past month with SRS. CA15-3 stable for 12 months at 11.
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Old 10-08-2011, 02:32 AM   #8
Trish
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 434
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

I understand it to mean targeting the multiple drivers of tumour growth in multiple ways including HER2 (Herceptin and Tykerb attack different aspect of the HER2 cells-H the surface and T inside the cell), and hormones. There are other drivers I'm more shaky on as they are more recent research but Lani and Rich often post about them. The San Antonio BC conference (held early December every year) last year featured papers about total blockade and about and about 'cross talk " between HER2 and Hormones so if you shut down one pathway tumour growth will use alternative routes so you have to target in multiple ways.
Trish
__________________
5/2004 (R) 30mm bre gr3 infiltrating ductal ca 16/18nodes er (2+) pr (3+) HER2 (3+)
6/2004
6 cycles(FEC), Oct 40 rads, Tamoxifen
5/2006
oopherectomy, Arimedex
12/2006
liver mets largest 9cm
1/2007
Herceptin,
3/2007
Taxol + Herc
1/2008
Herc alone
4/2008
Multiple bone mets,Zometa
7/2008
Herc + Gemcitabine
8/2008
Herc+Navelbine/vinoralbine
10/2008
Herc+Carboplatin+Taxol
12/2008
Tykerb+Xeloda
2/2010
Herceptin + trial drug
5/2010
Herceptin+Tykerb
8/2010
Tykerb+Abraxane
9/2010
Abraxane
12/2010
Abraxane+Tyk+Herc
4/2011
Tyk+Herc+Femara
6/2011
Liver and bone mets prog.Abraxane continue Herceptin,Tykerb,Femara and Zometa
8/2011
Probable liver progression and increased neuropathy. Xeloda with Tyk+Herc. Zometa 6 weekly.
9/2011
Liver progression,TM +++. Cyclophosphamide and Methotrexate metro Herc Zometa
10/2011 liver mets prog.Herc, 3 Tykerb +2mg decodron daily,Zometa
Trish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-22-2011, 10:32 PM   #9
Bunty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 465
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Hello Aussie friends,

This afternoon I was looking for reasons to avoid having to re-organise my wardrobes and cupboards after having the house painted, so I checked out the Australian Cancer Trials website, and found this one for TDM-1, which just started recruiting. I thought of you Trish, and wondered if it's something that you know about. It seems they are looking for heavily pre-treated women.

http://australiancancertrials.gov.au...ID=542110&ds=2

Trish, I hope you were/are well enough for the NY trip...

Cheers Marie
__________________
dx Dec 2000 dcis 2.5cm clear sentinel node, ER/PR- Her-2+
lumpectomy, 6 cycles AC, 6 weeks rads
October 2007 three x 2.5cm lung mets. 8 months Taxol, started Herceptin and continue. Significant reduction in lung mets.
June 2011 3cm x 4cm liver tumour. Started Abraxane and continue with Herceptin.
November 2011. Finished with Abraxane, continue with just Herceptin. Liver tumour now reduced to 15mm x 12mm. Lung tumour now 10mm x 0.5mm
February 2012. Scans show everything stable, and brain scan clear.
July 2012. PET/CT scans show I'm in remission - no active cancer!
]Dec CT brain cllear, lungs stable, liver tumour has increased to 20mm. PET scans showed active liver met and active lung thinglet, and possible bone met.
Jan 2013 recommence Abraxane, continue with Herceptin.
June 2013 finish Cycle 6 Abraxane, continue with Herceptin. 30% reduction in liver tumour, everything stable.
December 2013. CA15-3 on rise.
February 2014. PET and CT scans show single liver tumour has increased to 35mm. No other activity.
March 2014. Planned for SBRT for liver met, but couldn't have treatment as tumour too close to bowel. Continue Herceptin.
April 2014. Surgeon advises that I am a good candidate for liver resection, so will have operation early May (after camping holiday). Tumour now 44mm x 29mm.
May 7, 2014. Two liver tumours surgically removed. Third of liver removed, and gall bladder. Am I NED?May 2014. Pathology of tumour shows it's now ER+ (95% staining).
June 2014. CA15-3 has decreased to 18 from a pre-surgery reading of 59!
June 2014. Started Femara, continue with Herceptin.
July 2014. Stop Femara due to severe Osteoporosis. Commence Tamoxifen, continue Herceptin. Waiting to hear if I can have Aclasta infusion.
August 2014. CA15-3 has decreased further to 12 - YAY!
October 2014. Aclasta infusion for Osteoporosis. November 2014, CA15-3 decreased to 11. Scans of liver all clear, something new showing up on lung, but just watching at the moment.
November 2015. Started SBRT on solitary lung met.
November 2015. Bone density scan showed very good improvement so back on Femara - yay!
December 2016. 6 treatments of SBRT radiation on lung. Seems to have had some effect.
June 2016. CA15-3 still stable and low at 9.
June 2016. Started subcutaneous Herceptin replacing infusion.
Jan 2017. LVEF dropped to 46%. Stopped Herceptin.
Feb 2017. Started ACE Inhibitor and BETA Blocker. Still off Herceptin.
Aug 2017. Two new mets - Portacaval lymph node and mediastinal lymph node.
Aug 2017. Blood tests show extremely elevated liver enzyme levels. Many tests to investigate.
Sept 2017. Portacaval lymph node blocking liver bile duct causing liver enzyme and Bilirubin problems.
Oct 2017. 8cm stent inserted into liver bile duct. Procedure caused pancreatitis, and hospitalised for 3 days. Liver enzymes improving rapidly.
Nov 2017. Commenced 4 weeks of radiation on Portacaval lymph node. 5 week break before chemo.
Jan 2018. CT scan. 11 new small liver mets, and new superclavical lymph node med.
Jan 2018. Start Kadcyla. CA15-3 426.
Apr 2018. First scans since starting Kadcyla. All tumours reducing. CA15-3 dropped to 30 from 426.
Dec 2019. Still on Kadcyla, but two small brain mets have been treated in the past month with SRS. CA15-3 stable for 12 months at 11.
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Old 10-22-2011, 11:58 PM   #10
Trish
Senior Member
 
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 434
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

THANK YOU, Bunty. I didn't know about the trial and there is a site in Frankston which is about an hours drive from home, near where my sister works so is very doable.Thank you so much for procrastinating on the wardrobe front. My liver is becoming a problem -hope it is functioning well enough to meet the definition "adequate organ function"-one of the inclusion criteria. This is the best news I've had in ages and I am ringing my oncologist tomorrow.
Trish
__________________
5/2004 (R) 30mm bre gr3 infiltrating ductal ca 16/18nodes er (2+) pr (3+) HER2 (3+)
6/2004
6 cycles(FEC), Oct 40 rads, Tamoxifen
5/2006
oopherectomy, Arimedex
12/2006
liver mets largest 9cm
1/2007
Herceptin,
3/2007
Taxol + Herc
1/2008
Herc alone
4/2008
Multiple bone mets,Zometa
7/2008
Herc + Gemcitabine
8/2008
Herc+Navelbine/vinoralbine
10/2008
Herc+Carboplatin+Taxol
12/2008
Tykerb+Xeloda
2/2010
Herceptin + trial drug
5/2010
Herceptin+Tykerb
8/2010
Tykerb+Abraxane
9/2010
Abraxane
12/2010
Abraxane+Tyk+Herc
4/2011
Tyk+Herc+Femara
6/2011
Liver and bone mets prog.Abraxane continue Herceptin,Tykerb,Femara and Zometa
8/2011
Probable liver progression and increased neuropathy. Xeloda with Tyk+Herc. Zometa 6 weekly.
9/2011
Liver progression,TM +++. Cyclophosphamide and Methotrexate metro Herc Zometa
10/2011 liver mets prog.Herc, 3 Tykerb +2mg decodron daily,Zometa
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Old 10-23-2011, 12:38 AM   #11
Bunty
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Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Trish, your response has made me very happy, and far less guilty about not getting to my wardrobes!! I really look forward to hearing what your oncologist has to say tomorrow.... Fingers, toes, rabbit's feet all crossed for you.

Best wishes, Marie
__________________
dx Dec 2000 dcis 2.5cm clear sentinel node, ER/PR- Her-2+
lumpectomy, 6 cycles AC, 6 weeks rads
October 2007 three x 2.5cm lung mets. 8 months Taxol, started Herceptin and continue. Significant reduction in lung mets.
June 2011 3cm x 4cm liver tumour. Started Abraxane and continue with Herceptin.
November 2011. Finished with Abraxane, continue with just Herceptin. Liver tumour now reduced to 15mm x 12mm. Lung tumour now 10mm x 0.5mm
February 2012. Scans show everything stable, and brain scan clear.
July 2012. PET/CT scans show I'm in remission - no active cancer!
]Dec CT brain cllear, lungs stable, liver tumour has increased to 20mm. PET scans showed active liver met and active lung thinglet, and possible bone met.
Jan 2013 recommence Abraxane, continue with Herceptin.
June 2013 finish Cycle 6 Abraxane, continue with Herceptin. 30% reduction in liver tumour, everything stable.
December 2013. CA15-3 on rise.
February 2014. PET and CT scans show single liver tumour has increased to 35mm. No other activity.
March 2014. Planned for SBRT for liver met, but couldn't have treatment as tumour too close to bowel. Continue Herceptin.
April 2014. Surgeon advises that I am a good candidate for liver resection, so will have operation early May (after camping holiday). Tumour now 44mm x 29mm.
May 7, 2014. Two liver tumours surgically removed. Third of liver removed, and gall bladder. Am I NED?May 2014. Pathology of tumour shows it's now ER+ (95% staining).
June 2014. CA15-3 has decreased to 18 from a pre-surgery reading of 59!
June 2014. Started Femara, continue with Herceptin.
July 2014. Stop Femara due to severe Osteoporosis. Commence Tamoxifen, continue Herceptin. Waiting to hear if I can have Aclasta infusion.
August 2014. CA15-3 has decreased further to 12 - YAY!
October 2014. Aclasta infusion for Osteoporosis. November 2014, CA15-3 decreased to 11. Scans of liver all clear, something new showing up on lung, but just watching at the moment.
November 2015. Started SBRT on solitary lung met.
November 2015. Bone density scan showed very good improvement so back on Femara - yay!
December 2016. 6 treatments of SBRT radiation on lung. Seems to have had some effect.
June 2016. CA15-3 still stable and low at 9.
June 2016. Started subcutaneous Herceptin replacing infusion.
Jan 2017. LVEF dropped to 46%. Stopped Herceptin.
Feb 2017. Started ACE Inhibitor and BETA Blocker. Still off Herceptin.
Aug 2017. Two new mets - Portacaval lymph node and mediastinal lymph node.
Aug 2017. Blood tests show extremely elevated liver enzyme levels. Many tests to investigate.
Sept 2017. Portacaval lymph node blocking liver bile duct causing liver enzyme and Bilirubin problems.
Oct 2017. 8cm stent inserted into liver bile duct. Procedure caused pancreatitis, and hospitalised for 3 days. Liver enzymes improving rapidly.
Nov 2017. Commenced 4 weeks of radiation on Portacaval lymph node. 5 week break before chemo.
Jan 2018. CT scan. 11 new small liver mets, and new superclavical lymph node med.
Jan 2018. Start Kadcyla. CA15-3 426.
Apr 2018. First scans since starting Kadcyla. All tumours reducing. CA15-3 dropped to 30 from 426.
Dec 2019. Still on Kadcyla, but two small brain mets have been treated in the past month with SRS. CA15-3 stable for 12 months at 11.
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Old 10-23-2011, 03:20 AM   #12
JennyB
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Location: Port Hedland, Australia
Posts: 382
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Trish so glad Marie was able to inform you of that trial I really sincerely have everything crossed for you - come on liver pep up once more - please!
Jenny xx
__________________
Diagnosed Nov '10 IDC whilst pregnant with 2nd child
Her 2 ++ ER/PR + but weak and patchy 50% + 5%
Left mastectomy Dec '10, 6cm tumour 1 of 2 lymph (micro mets)
Clear margins but lymphovasculer invasion
Stage 3a Grade 3
Fec 100 x 3 Jan '11 Taxotere X 3 and Herceptin X 1yr
Staging scans - CT brain & body and bone - May '11 - NED!!
Start Femara - in chemo induced menapause
25 Rads June '11
Dec '11 Menstruation resumed - zoladex inj monthly and Tamoxifen
Feb '12 Back on Femera and Zoladex
March '12 CT brain & body & bone scan all clear
Zometa x2/yearly
April '12 - Oopherectomy

Praying the Herceptin is as good as its hype!!
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Old 10-24-2011, 12:55 AM   #13
Trish
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 434
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Thanks Jenny. Will let you know how I get on after Wednesday when I see my oncologist. She is e mailing the trial co-ordinator today so she should have some info by then I hope.
Hope things are going well for you and your gorgeous family.
Trish
__________________
5/2004 (R) 30mm bre gr3 infiltrating ductal ca 16/18nodes er (2+) pr (3+) HER2 (3+)
6/2004
6 cycles(FEC), Oct 40 rads, Tamoxifen
5/2006
oopherectomy, Arimedex
12/2006
liver mets largest 9cm
1/2007
Herceptin,
3/2007
Taxol + Herc
1/2008
Herc alone
4/2008
Multiple bone mets,Zometa
7/2008
Herc + Gemcitabine
8/2008
Herc+Navelbine/vinoralbine
10/2008
Herc+Carboplatin+Taxol
12/2008
Tykerb+Xeloda
2/2010
Herceptin + trial drug
5/2010
Herceptin+Tykerb
8/2010
Tykerb+Abraxane
9/2010
Abraxane
12/2010
Abraxane+Tyk+Herc
4/2011
Tyk+Herc+Femara
6/2011
Liver and bone mets prog.Abraxane continue Herceptin,Tykerb,Femara and Zometa
8/2011
Probable liver progression and increased neuropathy. Xeloda with Tyk+Herc. Zometa 6 weekly.
9/2011
Liver progression,TM +++. Cyclophosphamide and Methotrexate metro Herc Zometa
10/2011 liver mets prog.Herc, 3 Tykerb +2mg decodron daily,Zometa
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Old 10-26-2011, 04:07 PM   #14
Mandamoo
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 432
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

I hope you are eligible Trish! Thanks Bunty for posting. It is good to see another TDM1 trial happening here.
Amanda x
__________________
Amanda xx
40 year old Mum to three gorgeous kids - son 5 and daughters 8 and 11
Wife to my wonderfully supportive husband of 17 years!
22 February 2011 - Diagnosed Early Breast Cancer IDBC Stage2b (ER/PR -ve, Her2+ve +++) - 38 years old
(L) skin sparing mastectomy with tissue expander, axilla clearance (2/14 affected) clear margins.
Fec*3, Taxotere and herceptin*2 - stopped due to secondary diagnosis

June 24 2011 Stage IV - Skin met, axilla node, multiple lung lesions

Bolero3 trial - Navelbine, Hereptin weekly, daily Everolimus/Placebo
February 2012 - July 2012 Tykerb and Xeloda - skin mets resolved, Lungs initially dramatically reduced but growing again
August 2012 (turn 40!) tykerb and herceptin (denied compassionate use of TDM1) while holidaying in Italy!
September 2012 - January 2013 TDM1 as part of the Th3resa trial - lymph nodes resolved, lungs slowly progressing.
January 2013 - herceptin, carboplatin and Perjeta (compassionate access)
April 2013 - Some progression in lungs and lymph nodes - Abraxane, Herceptin and Perjeta
July 2013 - mixed response - dramatic reduction of most lung disease, progression of smaller lung nodules and cervical and hilar nodes - ? Add avastin.
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Old 10-27-2011, 02:05 AM   #15
Trish
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 434
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Sadly Amanda I'm not eligible only because my liver function tests are now so bad I don't meet the organ function criterion. This is exquisitely frustrating because a couple of months ago I would have been fine. Hope your treatment is going well. Everolimus (which I would have to pay for) is one of the drugs one of my oncologists is thinking I could try though my other onc doesn't think my liver is good enough to cope with chemo. Hmm...we'll see. Marie tells me Milk Thistle is good for liver function. For the next 2 weeks I will get by when I am in New York with Tykerb and Dexamethosone. just had Herceptin and Zometa. So here's hoping things will be OK.
Hope things are going well with your treatment (do you know if you have the Everolimus or the Placebo?)
Thanks for your concern,
Trish
__________________
5/2004 (R) 30mm bre gr3 infiltrating ductal ca 16/18nodes er (2+) pr (3+) HER2 (3+)
6/2004
6 cycles(FEC), Oct 40 rads, Tamoxifen
5/2006
oopherectomy, Arimedex
12/2006
liver mets largest 9cm
1/2007
Herceptin,
3/2007
Taxol + Herc
1/2008
Herc alone
4/2008
Multiple bone mets,Zometa
7/2008
Herc + Gemcitabine
8/2008
Herc+Navelbine/vinoralbine
10/2008
Herc+Carboplatin+Taxol
12/2008
Tykerb+Xeloda
2/2010
Herceptin + trial drug
5/2010
Herceptin+Tykerb
8/2010
Tykerb+Abraxane
9/2010
Abraxane
12/2010
Abraxane+Tyk+Herc
4/2011
Tyk+Herc+Femara
6/2011
Liver and bone mets prog.Abraxane continue Herceptin,Tykerb,Femara and Zometa
8/2011
Probable liver progression and increased neuropathy. Xeloda with Tyk+Herc. Zometa 6 weekly.
9/2011
Liver progression,TM +++. Cyclophosphamide and Methotrexate metro Herc Zometa
10/2011 liver mets prog.Herc, 3 Tykerb +2mg decodron daily,Zometa
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Old 10-27-2011, 04:31 AM   #16
Mandamoo
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 432
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

I'm so sorry to hear that Trish - I hope that the New York vibe is better than any chemo thrown at those mets! We were there at Xmas time and had the most fabulous time. I imagine that Central Park will be amazing in Fall.
I am going OK with the treatment - I am not seeing much reduction in my skin met but I had reduction in my axilla node and my lungs were stable (there was maybe a little growth but too small to tell). Next scan in a couple of weeks. We are pretty sure I am on the Everolimus as I had throat ulcers and neutropenia that ended me in hospital - so dose was reduced. The ulcers are a very common side effect of the everolimus. I still get them every now and again on the reduced dose. I guess we don't know for sure though. I also had some nose bleeding which again is a possible side effect of the Everolimus. My onc is very excited about everolimus - especially since the Bolero 2 trial has been halted as the interim results were so successful.
Would Novartis consider compassionate funding for you?
Enjoy New York, New York.
Amandaxx
__________________
Amanda xx
40 year old Mum to three gorgeous kids - son 5 and daughters 8 and 11
Wife to my wonderfully supportive husband of 17 years!
22 February 2011 - Diagnosed Early Breast Cancer IDBC Stage2b (ER/PR -ve, Her2+ve +++) - 38 years old
(L) skin sparing mastectomy with tissue expander, axilla clearance (2/14 affected) clear margins.
Fec*3, Taxotere and herceptin*2 - stopped due to secondary diagnosis

June 24 2011 Stage IV - Skin met, axilla node, multiple lung lesions

Bolero3 trial - Navelbine, Hereptin weekly, daily Everolimus/Placebo
February 2012 - July 2012 Tykerb and Xeloda - skin mets resolved, Lungs initially dramatically reduced but growing again
August 2012 (turn 40!) tykerb and herceptin (denied compassionate use of TDM1) while holidaying in Italy!
September 2012 - January 2013 TDM1 as part of the Th3resa trial - lymph nodes resolved, lungs slowly progressing.
January 2013 - herceptin, carboplatin and Perjeta (compassionate access)
April 2013 - Some progression in lungs and lymph nodes - Abraxane, Herceptin and Perjeta
July 2013 - mixed response - dramatic reduction of most lung disease, progression of smaller lung nodules and cervical and hilar nodes - ? Add avastin.
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:41 AM   #17
NEDenise
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Philly Suburbs
Posts: 1,709
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Amanda, Marie, and Trish,
I hope you don't mind a non-Aussie chiming in here...
but I stumbled on this thread by accident and wanted to send all three of you my best wishes.
You are all so brave, and positive...I'm inspired.
I sincerely hope that all 3 of you get all the treatment you need, and can celebrate many, many, many years of NED status!
Sent with love and admiration!
Denise
__________________
1/11-needle biopsy
2/11-Lumpectomy/axillary node dissection - Stage 3c, ER/PR-14/17 nodes
3/11 - Post-op staph infection,cellulitis, lymphedema,seroma,ARRRGH!
4/12/11-A/C x 4, then T/H x 4, H only,Q3 weeks
8/26/11 finished Taxol!!!
10/7/11 mastectomy/DIEP recon
11/11 radiation x28
1/12/12 1st CANCER-VERSARY!
1/12 Low EF/Herceptin "Holiday" :(
2/12 EF up - Back on Herceptin, heart meds
4/2/1212 surgery to repair separated incision from DIEP recon
6/8/12 Return to work :)
6/17/12 Fall, shatter wrist,surgery to repair/insert plate :(
7/10/12 last Herceptin
7/23/12 Brain Mets %$&#! 3cm and 1cm
8/10/12 Gamma knife surgery, LOTS of steroids;start H/Tykerb
8/23/12 Back to work
12/20/12 Injure back-3 weeks in wheel chair
1/12/13 2nd CANCER-VERSARY!
1/14/13 herniate disk in back - surgery to repair
1/27/13 Radiation necrosis - edema in brain - back on steroids - but not back to work - off balance, poor cordination in right arm
5/3/13 Start Avastin to shrink necrosis
5/10/13 begin weaning steroids
6/18/13 Brain MRI - Avastin seems to be working!
6/20/13 quarterly CT - chest, abdomen, pelvis - All Clear!
7/5/13 finally off steroids!!
7/7/13 joined the ranks of the CHEMO NINJAS I am now Tekuto Ki Ariku cancer assassin!
7/13/13 Symptoms return - back on steroids
7/26/13 Back on Avastin - try again!
8/26/13 Not ready to return to classroom yet :( But I CAN walk without holding onto things! :)
9/9/13 Brain MRI - fingers crossed
Life is a grindstone, and whether it grinds you down or polishes you up is for you, and you alone, to decide. Cavett Robert
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Old 10-27-2011, 11:26 PM   #18
JennyB
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Port Hedland, Australia
Posts: 382
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Trish,
I'm really sorry to hear about your liver function its really crappy!
Anyway hope you have and your family have a great holiday in New York - I'm very jealous!
Take care and look forward to 'hearing' from you back here when you return.
Jenny xx
__________________
Diagnosed Nov '10 IDC whilst pregnant with 2nd child
Her 2 ++ ER/PR + but weak and patchy 50% + 5%
Left mastectomy Dec '10, 6cm tumour 1 of 2 lymph (micro mets)
Clear margins but lymphovasculer invasion
Stage 3a Grade 3
Fec 100 x 3 Jan '11 Taxotere X 3 and Herceptin X 1yr
Staging scans - CT brain & body and bone - May '11 - NED!!
Start Femara - in chemo induced menapause
25 Rads June '11
Dec '11 Menstruation resumed - zoladex inj monthly and Tamoxifen
Feb '12 Back on Femera and Zoladex
March '12 CT brain & body & bone scan all clear
Zometa x2/yearly
April '12 - Oopherectomy

Praying the Herceptin is as good as its hype!!
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Old 10-28-2011, 04:57 AM   #19
Trish
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 434
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Thanks Jenny. I'll let you know what my options look like when I get back. I'm having 2mg of dexamethosone a day and feeling good. Be in touch in a couple of weeks.
Trish
__________________
5/2004 (R) 30mm bre gr3 infiltrating ductal ca 16/18nodes er (2+) pr (3+) HER2 (3+)
6/2004
6 cycles(FEC), Oct 40 rads, Tamoxifen
5/2006
oopherectomy, Arimedex
12/2006
liver mets largest 9cm
1/2007
Herceptin,
3/2007
Taxol + Herc
1/2008
Herc alone
4/2008
Multiple bone mets,Zometa
7/2008
Herc + Gemcitabine
8/2008
Herc+Navelbine/vinoralbine
10/2008
Herc+Carboplatin+Taxol
12/2008
Tykerb+Xeloda
2/2010
Herceptin + trial drug
5/2010
Herceptin+Tykerb
8/2010
Tykerb+Abraxane
9/2010
Abraxane
12/2010
Abraxane+Tyk+Herc
4/2011
Tyk+Herc+Femara
6/2011
Liver and bone mets prog.Abraxane continue Herceptin,Tykerb,Femara and Zometa
8/2011
Probable liver progression and increased neuropathy. Xeloda with Tyk+Herc. Zometa 6 weekly.
9/2011
Liver progression,TM +++. Cyclophosphamide and Methotrexate metro Herc Zometa
10/2011 liver mets prog.Herc, 3 Tykerb +2mg decodron daily,Zometa
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Old 10-28-2011, 05:28 AM   #20
Trish
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 434
Re: Australian Treatments and Access

Denise it is lovely to hear from a non Australian on this thread and thanks for the good wishes. I enjoy reading your posts and look forward to reading more of them when I get back from my holiday.
Amanda thanks for the info re everolimus-it sounds a bit tough though and maybe my liver couldn't cope. I can't imagine how you managed being in hospital with your little ones so I hope you have lots of practical and sensitive help.
I think Novartis would consider cost sharing so I will look at it when I get back. Glad you had such a great holiday and hope those skin mets come to heel -and heal for that matter!
Trish
__________________
5/2004 (R) 30mm bre gr3 infiltrating ductal ca 16/18nodes er (2+) pr (3+) HER2 (3+)
6/2004
6 cycles(FEC), Oct 40 rads, Tamoxifen
5/2006
oopherectomy, Arimedex
12/2006
liver mets largest 9cm
1/2007
Herceptin,
3/2007
Taxol + Herc
1/2008
Herc alone
4/2008
Multiple bone mets,Zometa
7/2008
Herc + Gemcitabine
8/2008
Herc+Navelbine/vinoralbine
10/2008
Herc+Carboplatin+Taxol
12/2008
Tykerb+Xeloda
2/2010
Herceptin + trial drug
5/2010
Herceptin+Tykerb
8/2010
Tykerb+Abraxane
9/2010
Abraxane
12/2010
Abraxane+Tyk+Herc
4/2011
Tyk+Herc+Femara
6/2011
Liver and bone mets prog.Abraxane continue Herceptin,Tykerb,Femara and Zometa
8/2011
Probable liver progression and increased neuropathy. Xeloda with Tyk+Herc. Zometa 6 weekly.
9/2011
Liver progression,TM +++. Cyclophosphamide and Methotrexate metro Herc Zometa
10/2011 liver mets prog.Herc, 3 Tykerb +2mg decodron daily,Zometa
Trish is offline   Reply With Quote
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