Going Beyond Standard Immunotherapy

Posted by Tom Anderson @ta52, Dec 9, 2020

In my doctor's consult yesterday I was told that because I was tolerating the infusions so well with little or no side effects they want to go beyond the standard four infusions and continue with a Keytruda/Alimta "cocktail". Is this normal? Has anyone else been through this and what were the results?

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Lung Cancer group.

@merpreb

@dutchw– Good morning and Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. Thank you for sharing your story. I am a mentor for Mayo Connect's Lung Cancer and Lung Diseases. I have an unusual lung cancer called Multifocal Adenocarcinoma. I have survived two types of lung cancer for 23+ years and have never had immunotherapy, although I have had chemotherapy. I am sorry if I have given the impression that I have taken this wonderful drug.

@miriam57; @richcolleen– I have found that many people who have finished their two years on Keytruda are followed very closely with CT scans. I am at a loss to tell you that there are other drugs right now that will maintain you. Keytruda is "Humanized antibodies" This means that they are antibodies from non-human species whose protein sequences have been modified to increase their similarity to antibody variants produced naturally in humans. I certainly hope that the positive outcomes for many people who have taken this drug will see many more and maybe even a possibility for a maintenance program. I just don't know of any at this time.

The developers for Keytruda limited the study to two years. There was a lot of competition between several drug makers for the success of such a drug. You can read more of this here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pembrolizumab
The reason that I am suggesting that you read Wikipedia about your drug is so that you can see why there was a 2-year limit.

I am very glad that this drug's targeted population has expanded into many cancers.
https://www.keytruda.com/

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I just want to take time and thank you for being here Merry !!! Whenever I start feeling down about surviving or reoccurrence of my lung cancer I read your 23+ year survival story. It perks me up, gives me hope as I’m sure it does others on this site. At my age, if I make it 23 more years I’ll be 104 years old lol.. Thank you, your a God sent.

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@dutchw

I just want to take time and thank you for being here Merry !!! Whenever I start feeling down about surviving or reoccurrence of my lung cancer I read your 23+ year survival story. It perks me up, gives me hope as I’m sure it does others on this site. At my age, if I make it 23 more years I’ll be 104 years old lol.. Thank you, your a God sent.

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@dutchw– Oh, my goodness. Not to blow my own horn but survivorship is what hope is all about. When one of us survives it gives hope to others, a willingness to move ahead. Thank you.

By the way, 104 is a lofty goal, go for it!

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Merry.. Good morning.. I’ve seen the term “ground glass” a number of time. What does that mean, please?

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@dutchw– Good morning! Ground Glass is a descriptive term used in describing the look of certain lung cells. It helps with a diagnosis. It looks like a faint cloud of tiny glass particles.

Have you run into this term in relation to yourself?

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I’ve been on it 1 year and 11 months. It’s a piece of cake verse the chemo cocktails I was on. Only thing I’ve notice was blow out 1-4 days after infusion. Feeling pretty good also. Cancer is still in tumor in right lung, cells in kidneys, stomach and left lung. No growth. 🙏🏻

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