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A 24-year-old member asked:

What can you expect in the final stages of metastasis lung and brain cancer?

5 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Amir Faridi
Specializes in Hematology and Oncology
Prognosis: Obviosly prognosis is not good in this situation. Usual treatment is palliative to keep patient comfortable. Radiation therapy can help neurological symptoms. Disease widening with increase shortness of breath, respiratory failure, pneumonia, infection and pain related to cancer can happen. Palliative chemotherapy can help to improve symptoms.
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Dr. Jefferson Chen
Neurosurgery 36 years experience
Depends on location: The extent of the spread will affect the symptoms. It sounds like you are referring to lung cancer primarily with spread to the brain. If the brain cancer is not controlled, progressive symptoms from the mass effect in the brain include headaches, seizures, nausea/vomiting, weakness, blurred vision. In the final stages, the oncologists are very good working with palliative care.
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Dr. Cliff Robinson
Radiation Oncology 19 years experience
It depends on the: Size, number, and location of the mets. Mets cause swelling, which can result in headache, nausea, weakness, seizures, or difficulty with thinking, speech, or vision depending on the part of the brain. In patients who succumb to the mets, it is usually swelling leading to difficulty breathing and loss of consciousness. Steroids and radiation (possibly surgery) are treatments that may help!
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Dr. Joshua Garren
Radiation Oncology 26 years experience
Variable: Symptoms are obviously variable, but the best i can describe them, they are most similar to alzheimers, but much, much faster. If the worst thing about alzheimers is how long it goes on, the "best" thing about end stage brain tumors is how short the suffering tends to be. Lung cancer can add some shortness of breath and difficulty swallowing as well as lack of appetite.
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Dr. Cliff Robinson
Radiation Oncology 19 years experience
Difficult: Very difficult to answer as each person is different. If the metastases in the brain themselves result in death, people usually develop anything from headaches, confusion, seizures, weakness, or numbness, ultimately developing difficulty breathing if swelling becomes severe enough. Brain swelling can be treated with steroids and the tumors with radiation, and sometimes surgery or chemo.
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Similar questions

A 44-year-old member asked:

What to expect in metastasis, lung and brain cancer?

3 doctor answers12 doctors weighed in
Dr. Liawaty Ho
Hematology and Oncology 25 years experience
Type of cancer?: It will depend on the type of cancer. Generally speaking, the prognosis will be worse/poor when the cancer has spread to distant organ- compared to if the cancer still localized. However, what to expect-depend on the type of the cancer and how good overall condition of the patient. In testicular ca-it can still be cured eventhough it is already spreading.In lung ca- median survival is 15 months.
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Last updated Nov 6, 2019

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