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 the archives. Thanks again for reading :o)

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Great Appointment Today

We had a great appointment today with Dr. Michael P. (as in Paul) Sherman. I found out why I sometimes need "big labs" and I found out why cancer comes back when it seems like it was gone after chemotherapy, and I got a couple of referrals to doctors for a couple of other nagging concerns (my toe and my left leg). Dr. Sherman also explained how radiation (xrays) kill cancer cells. I can't explain that for you here, though...maybe Mark can remember.
I need "big labs" every month so Dr. Sherman can watch my tumor markers! Actually, he said he will look at my tumor marker results every three months but we should have the "big labs" every month so he can look at a graph instead of a couple of points. Makes sense to me. I just have to remember to get to the lab (Quest Diagnostics) three days before my monthly appointment with Dr. Sherman so he can have the results in time for my appointment. (it takes three days to get results back on "big labs"). My CA-27.29 were a little high last time so we will continue watching them. My pro-thrombin time was also high (3.43) so he told me to take 4 mg of Coumadin per day instead of the 5 mg I have been taking (that's for the blood clot - Coumadin is an anticoagulant). My red blood cells are good this week so I didn't need a shot of Aranesp. THANK GOODNESS! Those shots hurt. I also need "big labs" every month right before my IV Drip of Aredia (bone strengthener) so Dr. Sherman can check my liver function and make sure I can take the Aredia.
I showed Dr. Sherman my toe on my left foot and he referred me to a dermatologist. He says it looks like I might have a "_______ _______ melanoma". I forgot what he called it..except for the last word. Kind of stuck in my memory for some reason...duh. Dr. Becker is the name of the dermatologist. My appointment with Dr. Becker's Physician's Assistant is next week, Aug 24th.
Dr. Sherman
also referred me to an orthopedic surgeon for the numbness I have in my left leg. I forgot his name, but I am going to call him this afternoon, too. I am waiting for them to call me back to get an appointment. I think it's going to be at Muir Orthopedics.


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