Lung cancer
posted by avmac
24 July 2021

Palliative chemo

Last reply: 04 August 2021 14:59

Hi, my mum has just started on palliative chemo. She was on immunotherapy but it stopped working. What is the purpose of palliative chemo? From my understanding, it will just prolong her life by a few months? Is this right? We haven’t asked about a timeframe, but I kinda need to know. I know it all depends on whether or not the treatment actually does anything for her. She has been fighting cancer for over 5 years now. Thanks

1 comment


commented by Cancer Nurse
04 August 2021

04 August 2021 14:59

Hi Avmac,

Thank you for posting on the online community.

I am sorry to hear that your mum is on palliative chemotherapy. Palliative chemotherapy is usually given to patients with the aim of improving their quality of life, reduce or control the side effects of cancer and help the person live longer. Palliative chemotherapy is not given to cure the cancer. The hope is that the palliative chemotherapy will prolong her life, but for how long will depend on how well the chemotherapy works.

Your mum will be reviewed regularly while on treatment and her team will be able to guide you about how well she is doing. Often it can take a few treatments before the team will know if it is benefiting your mum. If your mum is happy with it, you could arrange to speak with your mum’s team the next time that she is in for an appointment and ask the questions that you need to. It can often be helpful to write out a list of questions before the appointment.

If you would like to speak with one of our cancer nurses please contact the Support Line. The Support Line Freephone number is 1800 200 700, Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm.

Kind regards,

Cancer Nurse

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