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schlinksr
@schlinksr

Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 30, 2017

Keytruda Treatment

Posted by @schlinksr, Sep 14, 2017

I have stage IIIB Malignant Melanoma and just had my first treatment of Kytruda. Is anyone taking this drug and what are you experiencing?

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My husband has squamous cell carcinoma (spindle cell) which originated on his scalp. He has had numerous surgeries and radiations on his head. He began Erbitux in October. The May 2016 PET scan shows NO cancer on his head, but three areas of concern in his torso. Mayo doctor mentioned in March that we might try immunotherapy “if it comes to that.”

My husband had a transplanted kidney, which was rejected in March, because the immuno-suppressant drugs to keep the kidney were suspended in the summer of 2016. They were feeding the cancer.

Keytruda was not an option before, but with the kidney no longer a consideration, Keytruda started in May 2017. Mayo doctor said that Keytruda would target the kidney and take it out. Shortly after starting Keytruda, the remainder of his transplanted kidney function ceased. We take this to mean the Keytruda is doing exactly what it was designed to do – to help the immune system to find the bad guys and take them out.

He had numerous left-over wounds from surgeries before the Keytruda. They have healed quickly since it started.

His main complaint is fatigue, but it is hard to tell how much is related to dialysis and how much is related to Keytruda. He has an aversion to food smells – particularly meat. Sometimes it makes him sick. Again, hard to define the origin of that.

Hi @schlinksr
Let me add my welcome to @gaybinator‘s.
I’d like to introduce you to additional members. @sylviapf‘s husband has also taken Keytruda (pembrolizumab), but for head and neck cancer.

You might be interested in the conversation between @twinskl and @lynnkay1956 where they talk about immunotherapies, like Keytruda and Opdivo (Nivolumab) here: https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/opdiva/

Meet others talking about melanoma in these discussions:
– Stage 4 Malignant Melanoma internal https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/stage-4-malignant-melanoma-internal/
– Melanoma: genetics and recurrence https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/melanoma-1/

@schlinksr, how did your first treatment go? How often will you have treatments?

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