PROJECT: 05-DJC:174.9

This is Deirdre's Breast Cancer Diary. I try to update this blog at least every evening. This is an easy way for me to keep a journal of the experience, and at the same time, I can keep my friends and family up-to-date on what is going on. I find it is not so bad to have cancer, but it is awfully depressing to talk about it. I hope you laugh as you read along. You can find the beginning in February ...in the archives. Thanks again for reading :o)

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

from Feb 16th

We went to my appointment with my Medical Oncologist. He explained the results of the biopsy (lumpectomy) from last week. I will need more surgery - the surgeon did not get all of the tumor the first time. Additionally, the pathologist who did the analysis of the tissue also noted invasion of the cancer to the vascular system (that it had extended to a blood vessel). Not good. This surgery will probably be early next week, since I have a CT Scan this Friday (I have to wait until the chemicals are out of my system). There will be three things accomplished at this surgery: 1. Additional tissue will be removed in an effort to remove what remains of the cancer 2. Sentinel Node Dissection (for information on lymph involvement) 3. Installation of a "Port" (a catheter which will be installed in my arm and will run up my arm to my heart for delivery of chemotherapy regiments) We also added other tests to the batttery: * MRI of the right breast (I forget why). (I forget when, too.) Upcoming appointments: Feb ?? - Lab work (I am going to try today) ASAP - Meet with Surgeon again to discuss & schedule next surgery Feb 17 - Meet with Oncology Pharmacy Specialist to discuss treatment options and doctor's recommendations (training, too) Feb 17 - CT Scan of Abdomen and possibly the MRI, too. I mean, why not see how much radiation I can take at once? Feb ?? - Consultation with somebody else to discuss Gene Testing and blahblahblah. I am losing my clarity on these things...All I know is that I have to have all these things done as soon as they can do them, or as soon as they can fit me in. It is very hard because Iit doesn't really give me any time to do research on these things myself. It's scary because I have been seeing lots of health professionals and so quickly that we go to the next appointment and that one didn't know everything about the last visit with the last doctor...and was not even made aware of the proceduures that have been directed! It's like Mark said, "We need to call a meeting." So, this has been a hard night. I am worried. We are both worried and were not prepared for more surgery. It has not even been a week yet since the first one. And she was so sure she had gotten it all, "took extra to be sure" is what she told Mark. So I am not feeling good and will not be in today, please. I need to have time to think and read. I will complete the Self Evaluation Workbook and send it to you by the end of the day. That will be a break from all of the "names" and "numbers" and "percentages" and "increased rates of survival" and "decreased rate of recurrence" and "dosage for the first 14 weeks" and then "dosage for the 8 weeks following that". I will be relieved to not have to think "getting there 45 minutes before the appointment to get paperwork completed and my complete medical history" and won't (for the moment) have to be saddened when I am reporting each of my parents' cause of death. Questions? Me too. Thanks, Deirdre p.s. I will ask Mark to send one of his excellent emails about the appointments since this is a jumbled piece of emotional poo. Thank God for him.

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