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My wife diagnosed stage 4 in Feb

First of all thank you for all your support. My wife is 41 and she was diagnosed Stage IV. She is on Femara+Ibrance+ zoladex met to liver. Her recent PETscan showed good improvement over the first. Recently she has been experiencing tumor hardening and clamping on alternate days. On the calm days the tumor areas seems to be loose and quiet while the next day it gets hard and stretched. Anyone here experience this? I talked to her oncologist and doc..she feels the pill is working on it-causing inflamation as it targets the tumor. I dont seem to find any literature. I also talked to a scientist in one of the big pharma focused on early stage discovery. Same response. Thoughts anyone? Is it the femara or ibrance? or something else? Its been a journey for both of us. I have seen her suffer and I really am trying to find answers. Hope you all can help me learn about this phenomenon.

Thank you in advance.

Comments

  • sondraf
    sondraf Member Posts: 1,550

    I am on the same regimen and have been for the last two years (dx'd at about your wife's age). When you say tumor hardening, do you mean the primary in the breast or the liver met?

  • kenksx
    kenksx Member Posts: 4

    Primary In the right breast.

  • sondraf
    sondraf Member Posts: 1,550

    Then yes, I have experienced times over the month where it seemed like yay! the tumor is shrinking! because it seemed softer or smaller and then times (usually on the week off Ibrance) when I worry because it seems harder/growing. In the end I got about 40% shrinkage of the primary over two years, although given where the placement is of the tumor and how it grew (sub areolar and very deep, growing up to retract the nipple just before diagnosis) I have to really dig around to feel it, but my main judge is the nipple retraction. When the tumor is "harder" it appears like the nipple is more retracted. There was one month in mid 2020 when it seemed much harder than before and I flagged it for a quick observation but oncology didn't seem to think it mattered, and it didn't because the next scan was when I had the greatest shrinkage.


  • kenksx
    kenksx Member Posts: 4

    SondraF. Thank you! Thank you! This really helps. Exactly what her oncologist said. PETscan showed substantial shrinkage and asked us to stay focused on that.

    Thank you for taking time to respond.

  • Ire83
    Ire83 Member Posts: 2

    my partner was diagnosed in November. She is 40. Stage 4. Metastatic Inflammatory Breast cancer. Bilateral. Er+ pr+ her2- Mets to s2, l3, and right 7th rib. Her tumor shrunk significantly after 6 rounds of red devil chemo. It looks and feels like its back to "Normal" its no longer swollen heavy and hot so she is able to get more comfortable laying down now. She takes ibrance, Femara, and gets zoladex injections. She has a lot of fatigue, bone pain, and joint stiffness from all the meds. And extreme hot flashes. When her left breast was so swollen and hard. The dr recommended wearing a tight sport bra it helped with the pain. I'm desperately looking for friends that are caregivers to stage 4 patients. I need a support systems to better help her and keep myself sane. It is so hard watching her hurt and being unable to do anything about it :,(

  • moth
    moth Member Posts: 3,293

    Ire83, I'm sorry about your wife and how hard this is on everybody. Have you seen the post about the zoom support group every 2 weeks https://community.breastcancer.org/forum/144/topic...


  • Ire83
    Ire83 Member Posts: 2

    thank you! I plan to attend the meetings. Its hard finding support specific to stage IV.