Surgery is presently scheduled for February 15th, although I am at the front of the queue for any cancellations or openings with any of the surgeons. They will remove the tumour and all of the lymph nodes in an outpatient procedure, then once the incision has healed a bit, I will start radiation.
My surgeon called me on Tuesday night and we had a long talk. He feels very confident that my current condition is treatable and that we’re going to take care of it. My husband and I then met for an hour with my oncologist last night. For now, we are focusing primarily on dealing with the new tumour, and I’m pretty confident about the plan. Dr S pointed out that the PET scan did not include any imaging of my brain, so I am scheduled for an MRI tomorrow. The standard sites for breast cancer to metastasize are the liver, lungs, bones, and the brain. My brain is the only site that hasn’t been scanned and cleared yet, and quite honestly I’d just rather know one way or the other at this point. Dr S is also
harassing in contact with the surgery schedulers to try to get me in earlier. I think that she, my husband, and I are just really uncomfortable with how fast this sucker is growing and want it out!
There was some discussion of the longer term plan. Dr S wouldn’t commit to a grade: it’s not quite Stage 4 but it’s not Stage 3, either. She described it as sort of being in never never land. She was willing to tell me that there is a greater than 50% chance that the cancer is systemic. She is worried about my prognosis. So am I. But one of my Dad’s favorite sayings was “He who worries before it’s necessary worries more than is necessary” so I’m just going to follow his most excellent advice.
So. At this point I am keeping focused on treating this tumour. I went for pre-surgery bloodwork today so that is out of the way. I’m following the pre-surgery restrictions (like avoiding Advil) to be prepared. Dr S recommended that I drop out of the Living Strong program at the YMCA and to prepare mentally for the surgery. Sounds good to me! I’ve also been sharing the news with friends and family, and haven’t been shy about asking for their prayers and good thoughts.
If a good attitude, strong support, and determination can fight this, then I’m well armed. Thanks for all the good wishes, and I’ll keep things updated here if you’re interested.