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Starting radiation therapy after GBM surgery

Some info first:

    Age: 68
    Sex: male
    Height: 170cm
    Weight: 75kg
    Race: caucasian
    Duration of complaint: 14 days since surgery
    Location (Geographic and on body): Poland, GBM
    Any existing relevant medical issues (if any): diabetes type 2, atherosclerosis; deep vein thrombosis two years ago

My grandpa (68) has undergone a GBM (or at least what looks like GBM cause we're still waiting for histopathology results of the sample they took during surgery) surgery 14 days ago. The docs told us the results of this biopsy will probably arrive around April 20th so in another 10 days and that the next steps will almost certainly be the usual RT + chemotherapy. The "almost" part is problematic cause healthcare here works in such a way that we need their official statement before progressing with the treatment and for that they need to do a joint consultation, for which they need the histopathology results.

Totalling it all up, it looks like we'll be able to have an appointment with the oncologist (which is a mandatory step before starting RT around here) not sooner than in the last week of April. And the time between this consultation and start of actual RT is usually around _a month_, and I'm talking non-covid times here. All this regretfully makes it look like grandpa will be able to start the actual RT 7-8 weeks after the surgery (~5 weeks after the biopsy report is in).

Is it a reason for concern? Should I try to get a bunch of appointment dates blindly, hoping that we get the histopathology results before they're due so that we can shorten it all by at least a week or is there no reason to panic? Judging by the info online, time is key here and a month after surgery is considered a regular duration before starting RT - but here, we're talking almost twice that worst case scenario and I'm growing a little paranoid cause I wouldn't want grandpa's surgery - which went very good from the surgeon told me - to go in vain just because all the intermittent stuff went so slow that the RT isn't as effective as it could have been.
1 Responses
15695260 tn?1549593113
Hello and welcome to the forum.  We're sorry to hear about this situation with your grandpa.  That's difficult and navigating healthcare is always challenging in easier times than we are now in with the pandemic.  I can't speak for the situation of timing in your specific area.  Most places will triage situations and move them up in terms of how quickly treatment will begin based on need.  Is your grandfather having any symptoms? Has he had any genetic market tests like  genetic marker called MGMT methylation?  This can give some insight on outcome. Typically this is an aggressive cancer and treatment as soon as possible would be what anyone would wish for.  Also do we know if this is primary or secondary? here's a general article to read. https://www.healthline.com/health/brain-tumor/glioblastoma#glioblastoma-symptoms  While I understand your question regarding timing, I think you have every right to address these concerns to the treating physicians and see if you can expedite diagnosis and treatment.
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