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remission vs. cured

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  • remission vs. cured

    i am confused between cured and remission (hopefully I haven't asked this already somewhere) Here is the definition from ACS web site for remission:

    Detailed Guide: Cancer (General Information)
    What Is Remission?

    Remission is a period of time when the cancer is responding to treatment or is under control. In a complete remission, all the signs and symptoms of the disease disappear. It is also possible for a patient to have a partial remission in which the cancer shrinks but does not completely disappear. Remissions can last anywhere from several weeks to many years. Complete remissions may continue for years and be considered cures. If the disease returns, another remission often can occur with further treatment. A cancer that has recurred may respond to a different type of therapy, including a different drug combination.

    So if no more cancer was found when they removed Justin's abdominal tumor is he in remission or cured? His oncologist said he was cured but I didn't know what constituted "remission". Thanks, Lanette
    Son (21) Diag 6/29/05;non-seminoma stage II;embryonal carcinoma & teratoma; right I/O 7/1; 4 X BEP; 21.5 x 19.0 x 9.5cm abdominal mass; full bilateral RPLND 11/21/05; 8-06 right arm/hand continues to heal from paralysis due to nerve injury

  • #2
    I think you can call it "complete remission" and it will be a definitive cure in 5 years.

    Stage 1 seminoma in august 2001
    with invaded spermatic chord and treated with RT
    Relapse november 2005, 4 BEP and now back to surveillance


    • #3
      Our oncologist said that with tc you are in remission for two years after the end of chemo and then you are considered cured.
      Son Jason diagnosed 4/30/04, stage III. Right I/O 4/30/04. Graduated College 5/13/04. 4XEP 6/7/04 - 8/13/04. Full open RPLND 10/13/04. All Clear since.

      Treated by Dr. Rakowski of Midland Park, NJ. Visited Sloan Kettering for protocol advice. RPLND done at Sloan Kettering.


      • #4
        It is my understanding that you are considered cured after two years for non-seminoma and 5 years for seminoma. The clock starts ticking with the first time cancer could no longer be traced in your body.

        There is always the chance for a recurrence - these numbers are all based on statistics. So, if your glass is half empty then you will be in one long remission. My oncologist being an optimist has already called me cured for the last half year - with a little footnote, naturally.

        Stage IIa, non-seminoma (90% embryno / 10% teratoma); I/O 12/22/04, 3 x BEP, RPLND 05/12/05