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Young cousin diagnosed with Non-Hodgekins Lymphoma

 
 
littlek
 
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 10:38 am
Docs and medical people: help!

We just found out my teenage cousin has a NHL tumor (type b / b cell). She'd been coughing and itchy-skinned for at least a few months. Parents are divorcing - they thought it was a psychological reaction. The tumor is in her body cavity near her lungs. They are doing spinal fluid and bone marrow testing today.

Info online is general and fairly overwhelming and scary. Any further info we can get from a more personal point of view would be helpful.
 
JPB
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 11:01 am
littlek, this is a very scary time for you and your family but please be reassured that cancer treatments of all types are much more advanced than they were in years past and what was once dire news is no longer necessarily so -- particularly in a young, otherwise healthy person.

The staging of her illness will determine both the treatment recommendations and the prognosis. There is no way to know for sure what her staging will be until the results of the bone marrow and spinal fluid testing are available .

I assume from your post that she has already had an MRI and/or CT scan and that the only solid-phase tumor identified is in her chest. That is good news. A single solid-phase tumor is treatable through a number of different routes which will be best identified with the results of today's testing.

Stay strong, as hard as that is right now. My thoughts to you and your family for the best possible outcome.
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littlek
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 11:54 am
Thank you JPB. She may or may not have had imaging - I assume she has. The tumor has been biopsied and sent out for confirmation and Dana-Farber.
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sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 11:59 am
Dana-Farber -- that's world-class. Glad that she has easy access to that caliber of treatment.

I wish I had more personal info to give but wanted to stop by and say I'm thinking of her and hoping for the best.
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 12:05 pm
I've nothing useful to add re the tumor and treatment, but am glad it has been caught and that she is with capable practioners. It's so tough for her and your family.
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Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 12:11 pm
That's awful, littlek! Unfortunately, I have nothing to offer in this situation except my very best wishes. I hope your cousin and you get out of this okay.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 12:56 pm
It's totally out of my experience. I do wish for the best possible outcome.
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Chai
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 01:15 pm
A friend of mine had this when a teenager. I didn't know him then.

He said the most important thing for him during that time was the support of his family and friends.

The family goes unsaid.

He said his friends refused to let him feel sorry for himself. They kept him active, doing stuff with them, even when he felt like **** after chemo.

They wouldn't let him think of himself as a sick person, or feel sorry for himself. The message was "you're going to get past this, don't poop out on us"

Obviously they didn't force him to do things when he was incapable, but, he did say that he remembers puking his guts out, and when he was done with that someone said "Ok, you're finished puking, let's go to the movies"
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littlek
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 01:43 pm
She does have good friends!

Thanks all.
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Gala
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 02:15 pm
When I was in college a friend had this. We were nuts and upset about it and did a lot of research. The good news is, it's treatable! My friend is doing fine today, and this is many years after college.
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Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 02:57 pm
Sorry to hear about your cousin littlek. I believe that I had B cell lymphoma, although they called it something else in the olden days. I have been in remission since I had my bone marrow transplant, in 1990.

Dana Farber is an excellent place to go. Over the years, there have been many new treatments for her condition. If you want to know anything in particular, PM me, and I'll offer any info that I have.
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littlek
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 03:11 pm
Thanks for the success stories! Phoenix, I may have questions later, thanks.
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Izzie
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2008 03:38 pm
So sorry LilK for you and your family. Huge positivity for your cousin - it will be a scary time whatever the results are. Keep focused on positive - when she has the results she will then be able to deal... she'll need support and love - and that, you are already giving her... so, keep just being there and being strong. Hold her hand when she reaches out. x
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Noddy24
 
  1  
Reply Fri 4 Jul, 2008 04:40 am
Littlek--

You and your cousin will be in my thoughts.
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dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 4 Jul, 2008 11:00 am
Sorry to hear this, 'k.
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littlek
 
  1  
Reply Fri 4 Jul, 2008 03:37 pm
Thanks all.

She's undergoing her second day of chemo. The aim is to shrink the tumor for removal. They did the spinal tap and bone marrow withdrawals, dunno how long until we get the results. The chemo made her nauseous and dizzy.
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gustavratzenhofer
 
  1  
Reply Fri 4 Jul, 2008 03:44 pm
You have my prayers, kris.
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Izzie
 
  1  
Reply Fri 4 Jul, 2008 03:47 pm
Thinking of you and yours LilK x
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littlek
 
  1  
Reply Fri 4 Jul, 2008 06:33 pm
This kid has always been healthy and fit. She lives in hippie country and was raised on a natural lifestyle. I don't think she's ever been on antibiotics even. Just weird and scary.
0 Replies
 
Chai
 
  1  
Reply Fri 4 Jul, 2008 06:52 pm
Just keep in mind, it is treatable.
0 Replies
 
 

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