have we mentioned lately how MUCH cancer SUCKS!?!?!?!??!?!!?!??!?!?!?!!
Posted 01 February 2012 - 03:58 AM
whoooooaaaaa, right??? damn. mind = blown. many of you have followed my thread in the womens forum but i'm posting here now.
tl/wish i wasn't writing it!
i had surgery last week to remove what has turned out to be not one, but TWO cancerous tumors. (cause i never do anything halfway ya know... :-p) my surgeon, dr scalia, who really is brilliant, said afterwards he truly thought they were nothing and i'm sure he feels terrible. he called me at 8:50 this morning. i was upset and at work, and i have a few truly golden co-workers. at 9:11 the hospital cancer support & ed center called to see how soon i wanted to set up an appt to go over some basics and i was at our hospital's cancer center in about 10 minutes. met with an oncology support nurse named vickie and here is what i know:
i had two cancerous tumors in my left breast
the 'margins are all clear' meaning that 'they think they got it all' for both
both lumps contain two kinds of cancer. they are: ductal carcinoma in situ (contained within the duct) and invasive ductal carcinoma (busted out). both also contained pre-cancerous cells, too. they are really identical in makeup even though they presented themselves COMPLETELY differently during physical exam, mammos and multiple u/sounds.
it's considered a grade 2 but they'll need to clarify for me why not a 3, based on the info in the workbook i now own. it is called "your breast cancer treatment handbook", but it has worksheets and i'm writing in it so i'm calling it a workbook, dammit. and i can't recommed it for any sort of light reading.
i have an mri at 8:45 tomorrow.
i will have to have another surgery. i will 'have to' give mastectomy consideration. the surgeon will use the mri results to help him decide which lymph nodes to remove, though i certainly know which ones have been hurting lately, and also if more tissue should be removed for either tumor. (i've 'felt' these left side lymph nodes for years from time to time and i've mentioned it to few drs over the years and they all said 'oh you must be fighting a bug of some kind'. so i don't think that much about them any more, they're just one part of living with pain) the lymph node removal is where you get into having the drains 'n stuff and i think insurance pays for an overnight stay now.
on thursday i have a bone scan, a series of xrays, a ct scan and bloodwork. this will help them determine the stage and of course, treatment. the bloodwork will hopefully measure, among other things, a tumor marker called CA27-29. this will, hopefully, be charted for many years to come. there's a chance that my blood won't register the marker well which can mean more strict monitoring tests in those many years to come.
on tuesday 2/7, i see dr scalia again. he's a bit conservative, not sure what his thoughts will be.
that afternoon i have my first meeting with my oncologist, dr pillemer. not sure what his thoughts will be either!! he's said to be quite aggressive in treatment, has a great sense of humor and won't get all pissy if i give him a hard time now and again. and his nurse, steve, is said to be brilliant and wears his hair in a long ponytail. they'll have lots of results back by then and i think they'll know what is feeding the tumors by then, hormones or a protein or, undetermined. undetermined = automatic chemo. 4 or more lymph nodes involved = automatic chemo.
i will have radiation therapy
i have said that i am open to clinical trials because i've read that the success and survival rates are much higher if one does and that was confirmed today. what was a trial 10 years ago might be the gold standard of today, in fact. i have to say that i'm more interested in the non-FDA sponsored ones i think but we'll see if any of them even fit me, at all.
i've said i wanted a 2nd opinion at sloan in nyc. a few people from work have gone there and are all doing great today. there's a month's delay between surgery and chemo or radiation to allow healing, so that's when i would have that done. their plan may match my guys' plan or they may come up with a different plan. then i have treatment up here, using plan a or plan b, should they differ, or perhaps a plan c, not sure about a c though.
and i think that's all i know for now. thanks for reading, all good vibes MUCH appreciated!!!!
Posted 01 February 2012 - 12:21 PM
I'm visualizing a cancer free Nancy starting right now, and will continue to do so forever and always! Sending you loads and loads of good vibes darlin' and I'm here if you want to talk.
Posted 01 February 2012 - 12:25 PM
I am available/ can make myself more available if you want to talk about anything, if you need anything.
If you read this before your MRI, take a little washcloth or piece of foam in with you to put under your forehead.
Posted 01 February 2012 - 12:39 PM
My Mom found out she had breast cancer in 2008. She had surgery, she went through radiation and chemo. She is now 99.9% in the clear for it NEVER returning.
Lots of get healthy feel better vibes coming your way, Nancy!
Posted 01 February 2012 - 01:45 PM
the cluster and i will be thinking of you and expect a full recovery and a healthy nancykind by the time vibes rolls around. i have 100% confidence in your strength and will to beat this.
Posted 01 February 2012 - 01:59 PM
and Sloan Kettering is the best...i spent half of the 80s there with my big brother and the staff there is absolutely top notch.