Tubes and Trials

I had two appointments yesterday. The first was with my oncologist, Dr. S. She was delighted by the pathology report, and we went over the chemotherapy plans. I will start on July 26th, and will do a course of dense dose AC + T. This translates to Doxorubicin/Cytoxan every 2 weeks for 4 doses, then Paclitaxel once a week for 12 weeks. I am applying for a clinical trial as well, which would add Herceptin to the Paclitaxel for one year. It’s trial NSABP B-47, with info here:
http://www.nsabp.pitt.edu/B-47.asp
If I get in to the study, I would have a 50% random chance of getting the drug. During chemotherapy, I will be getting anti-nausea meds, Neupogen to bring my white blood count back up, and steroids to prevent allergic reactions. I already have the chemo port inserted, so the blood work and medication will be easier.

Like so much of this, it’s mainly the unknown that’s anxiety producing. Dr. S told me that I’m not likely to see all of the side effects (although the hair loss is pretty much a given) so I am just going to have to wait another two weeks to see. In some ways, the wait is good, since my eldest son has come home for a 2 week visit. It is so good to see him.

The second appointment was to finally get the damn drainage tube out. It didn’t hurt at all, just a weird tugging as she pulled the 12 inches out. The relief was pretty much immediate. I was able to sleep on my right side last night, and tomorrow I can have my first shower since June 28th! Woo Hoo! I image that those living with me will also welcome my return to full cleanliness. I was a bit more uncomfortable today, as there is a slight build up of pressure across my chest, but overall I feel much better. I’ve been walking again, and although my arm is stiff, I think that I am much better off than a lot of other folks with how much motion I have at this point.

So, a little respite from things for a few days, then back into the full battle. Thank you to everyone who has been sending me emails and notes. They really brighten my day.

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