Today I had my oncologist consultation at Kaiser with Dr. Kwan. She was nice enough to let me squeeze in my Ma, Heather and Tana into the small exam room while we met. Dr. Kwan told us the PET/CT and liver MRI confirmed their suspicions and the cancer has spread to my sternum as well as my liver. Its also presenting in my pelvis and one of my vertebrae. La-di-da. Its hard to describe what hearing news like that feels like.
Dr. Kwan’s wants to get the metastasized cancer under control immediately and her recommendation for treatment is as follows; start with three months of chemo therapy treatment. (Each “cycle” I would be going in weekly for Taxol treatment for three weeks and then have one week off.) After three months I would have diagnostic image testing done to see if the chemo is working. Ideally the images will show that the chemo is shrinking the cancer/metastasized cancer. Then I will undergo three more months of chemo to complete the treatment. Once chemo is complete I would take a hormone inhibitor indefinitely (read: for the rest of my life).
Then we went over side effects of chemo. So here is a list of what I CAN’T WAIT to start experiencing:
- Complete Alopecia – Yep all the hair, gone. Awesome eyebrows I’ve been getting compliments on since I was 10, gone. Beautiful hair that looks great in any style/color/cut – gone. But aside from looking like Keanu when he wakes up from the Matrix, I am looking forward to not having to shave my legs and experimenting with drawing on different eyebrow shapes.
- Early Menopause – Two words guys: Hot Flashes.
- Suppressed Immune System – All I heard was I can’t have ceviche or rare steaks. (I know what you are thinking. “Oh, no Danielle, when does the cruelty end?”)
- Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. OH MY!
We scheduled my first chemo treatment for next Thursday, March 9th. Then we all went to Home State for breakfast – I had migas with chorizo and avocado (and chips and queso).
I am currently in the process of getting a second opinion scheduled before I begin treatment. For my (and my family’s) peace of mind I need to be sure this is the right/best course of treatment.
I love you all.
Until next time.