Yes, the internet and doctors say the immunity system does not recognize the GIST as cancer, so doesn't try to fight it. I don't really agree with that.
As to Glevic working on primary/secondary tumors - I hadn't heard that. But, I know for a fact that Glevic DOES work longer than a year. It's been 3 years since I was told to get my affairs in order that I had 6 months (and maybe only 6 weeks). I am still in the clinical trial. The others in my group, the Glevec is still working. My cancer is stablized. The first year before the glevic it was growing like wildfire all over the abdomen like moss on a tree. On ct scan from baseline w/ no tumors in the liver then in 6 months, I had 25 tumors in the liver (that's when they told me possibly 6 weeks to live because of it growly so wildly fast)
Well, 3 weeks after starting glevic THE PAIN WAS COMPLETLY GONE. My doctor said that was the first thing all the patients said! After being on the Glevic for 3 months, I had my first scan. NO NEW GROWTH AT ALL. I get ct scans every 3 months in this clinical trial. IN 2 1/2 YEARS ON THE GLEVIC, THERE HAS NOT BEEN ANY NEW TUMORS OR ANY NEW GROWTH IN THE EXISTING TUMORS. Most all others in the trial with me have had better sucess than me even.
Like I said before, when they discovered my cancer it had metastasized from diaphram to colon and every inch of tissue in between. So....where was the primary and where was the secondary?? who knows?? I don't even care now.
Yes, I am trying MANY alternative things also. But I must be totally honest and say that anytime I try to go off the glevic for 2 weeks, my rib pain returns. So, I'm doing it all. Being in my 40's and told you are going to die, well..you can imagine.
One man had a grapefruit sized tumor and in less than 2 months it had gotten 50% smaller. There are MANY people still responding to Glevic after 2 years. I would see another doctor. I had 4 different doctors opinions from 4 different hospitals. It's his life and getting more opinions will not hurt - most especially before submitting to this drastic surgery!!
My thought is...the glevic can't hurt and it just might help. I am all the the alternative and would try many. It might just take the glevic to keep the tumor at bay, while he keeps looking into and trying the alternatives out there - which there are many!!