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My name is Wang Li (a pseudonym). I am an ordinary housewife who has never smoked and really hates it when people do. In October 2015, I visited the hospital for dry cough that had not improved for a month, and I was diagnosed with stage IV lung adenocarcinoma. CT scan revealed pulmonary hilar mass on the left upper side with metastases to bilateral mediastinal lymph nodes, liver and bone. Tumor biopsy (bronchoscopy) pathology showed infiltrative adenocarcinoma of the left upper lobe of the lung.
I knew nothing about it by that time and was extremely frightened. I was only 42 years old, with parents and a teenage child to take care of. I wouldn't dare die. The only way was to cooperate with doctors for proper treatment. In the initial treatment regimen, I received pemetrexed in combination with cisplatin and bevacizumab for 18 cycles and underwent thrombectomy for hepatic arterial chemotherapy. My symptoms improved at the early stage of treatment. However, CT scan showed significant increase in hepatic metastatic lesions in April 2017.
I studied hard to better understand my health condition and to be able to discuss with my doctor about treatment regimens. During this period, I attended professional academic conferences, joined lung cancer patient groups, and read a variety of articles published on WeChat. I learned that for patients with advanced lung adenocarcinoma, there was a high opportunity for treatment with targeted drugs. Therefore, I decided for the tumor gene detection by YuceBio after talking to my primary care physician (PCP) in May 2017.
Unfortunately, no positive mutations or rearrangements in EGFR or ALK were found in the gene detection results, so I could not receive targeted drugs. Immunological agents were already marketed in the US in 2017, and many relevant clinical trials also took place in China. My PCP had me tested again for PD-L1 expression and the results were positive. After discussion, we decided to participate in a clinical trial, in which I was given a small dose of decitabine (10 mg/day, D1 to D5) plus camrelizumab (200 mg, D6) every 3 weeks for 8 cycles. After 2 cycles of treatment, abdominal magnetic resonance imaging showed a reduction in liver lobe lesions and dry cough also considerably improved.
During this long-lasting battle with tumor, I experienced disease progression after 8 cycles of treatment, with occasional mild loss of appetite, so I withdrew from the combination therapy. It was assumed to be drug resistant. My PCP suggested another tumor gene detection as the tumor had progressed and a new test was necessary. So I had another tumor gene detection by YuceBio, and this time the ALK gene mutation was positive. For now, I just need to take crizotinib orally at home and go to the hospital for regular follow-ups.
It has been five years since my diagnosis in 2015 and I would like to encourage as many patients as I can. Cooperate actively with your treatment and as long as you're breathing, there's still hope.【 BACK 】
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