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sue225 (@sue225)

Stage 1 Bladder Cancer/Gemcitabine

Kidney & Bladder | Last Active: Feb 8 10:10pm | Replies (13)

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@plugger

Hi Sue, I have just completed a Gemcitabine treatment comprising 6 infusion via the Urethra, This makes 36 infusions over an 18 month period made up of 18 BCG infusions, 12 mitomycin and 6 gemcitabine. I am scheduled for another TURB at the end of February, this will be my fourth TURB. They told me I had non-invasive papillary cancer and when I thought they had finally got on top of it along came carcinoma in situ which can quickly become invasive. My Urologist want to remove the bladder as he believes that if it gets out then there isn't anything they can do for me. I elected to try Gemcitabine which was recommended by my Oncologist/Haematologist. My research indicated that it can be more successful than Mitomycin and delivered via the urethra it has a 98% absorption rate in the bladder and a 75% success rate. BCG is only 70% and it is usually their first preference.
Prior to gemcitabine I had never experienced any problems with the infusions but gemcitabine was a challenge. I think my problems were brought on by the TURB as it was administered only 10 days before my first infusion and I was still passing blood. Apparently the benefits of gemcitabine can be administered in 90 minutes but the nursing staff said the longer the better so they go for 2 hrs. In the first treatment I lasted only 20 minutes. this improved over the course of the treatment and last week I made 2 hrs.
I also have had my prostate removed but the cancer has returned and on top of this I have leukaemia so my poor system is flat out fighting battles on a number of fronts and as a result the immune system is compromised which makes it difficult to get good outcomes from all the treatment but we Aussies are tough and these challenges are just something that must be dealt with and the cancer doesn't realise yet that it picked a fight with the wrong guy.
This doesn't provide you with the information you are after but I can tell you more in a few weeks. All the best to your husband,

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Replies to "Hi Sue, I have just completed a Gemcitabine treatment comprising 6 infusion via the Urethra, This..."

@plugger thankyou so much for responding and sharing your story. You really have been through a lot. I hope the treatment gives you the best results.
Fourteen years ago, one oncologist told my husband to remove the bladder and the prostate. Went with oncologist number two. Radiation treatments were successful for the prostate. PSA very low. The bladder has been an ongoing nuisance. We were told right from the beginning that this is a type of bladder cancer that recurs. 14 years and nine TURBS later, my husband starts the first gemcitabine treatment in early February.
I wish you well and keep us posted on how things go for you.

@plugger how are you doing? Thinking about you as my husband was unable to tolerate gemcitabine. Here we are a year later, two TURBS in 2020, (also carcinoma in situ, high grade). Giving BCG another try. Two treatments over. Hope the side effects stay minimal. (Bladder removal maybe if all else fails).
I hope 2021 is being kind to you.
Australia is doing a better job with this pandemic than we are here in Canada.