This week I thought I was just getting away with a couple of appointments today – one to have my port flushed (for which I wore my new shoes!) – which unfortunately she said has a moisture lesion and shouldn’t go swimming for another week :-(, and another with my oncologist to see where we’re up to on the treatment process (and yes, I look quite weary):
So, this week, I now have:
- An appointment at Salford Royal with Mr George, surgeon, to see if I should be going down the surgery route, rather than radiotherapy. The expectation is that this is not required, but all bases are being ticked.
- An appointment at the Christie with Dr Colaco to double-check my way through the radiotherapy treatment, and need to ask him if I need a bigger gap between radiotherapy and chemotherapy than we currently have… which would mean not starting on 15th April (which means I might be asking for 6th May start date, to ensure that I can still go to Hamilton!)
I asked Dr Chittalia the following:
- The thyroid biopsy undertaken the other week was ‘level 2’, although the sample wasn’t great, but there’s no concern there, although likely to be a further double check later in the year.
- How many rounds of chemotherapy? No more than 4, but likely 3-4. Dosage likely to be 60ml per m2 (when regular is 75-100), or possibly less. I asked for as little as I need, please!
- We’re looking at denosumab rather than zometa for bone strengthening, which will start once the chemo drugs have finished, and be every 3-6 weeks, tied in with other infusions. This will continue indefinitely.
- Trastuzumab (Herceptin) and Pertuzumab (Perjeta) will start with the chemo, and will also continue indefinitely, as IV drugs. Oh, and he said the pertuzumab first time round tends to cause havoc with stomach…
- The Zoladex injections I’ve been told to not have any more, and to stop taking the Exemastane the week before chemo starts. It is likely that when I’m halfway through the chemotherapy I’ll be referred to start the process for an oophorectormy, to be undertaken around 2 months after the chemo finishes. *So that’s one less appointment each month!
- Double checked this study about tracers in the bone but not seen as relevant for now.
And I’ll next see Dr C in about 2 months, as if the chemotherapy date changes, he’ll just alter the prescriptions. Very much enjoyed a visit from Karen this evening to chill out over some food!
Dr Bex Lewis is passionate about helping people engage with the digital world in a positive way, where she has more than 20 years’ experience. She is Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing at Manchester Metropolitan University and Visiting Research Fellow at St John’s College, Durham University, with a particular interest in digital culture, persuasion and attitudinal change, especially how this affects the third sector, including faith organisations, and, after her breast cancer diagnosis in 2017, has started to research social media and cancer. Trained as a mass communications historian, she has written the original history of the poster Keep Calm and Carry On: The Truth Behind the Poster (Imperial War Museum, 2017), drawing upon her PhD research. She is Director of social media consultancy Digital Fingerprint, and author of Raising Children in a Digital Age: Enjoying the Best, Avoiding the Worst (Lion Hudson, 2014) as well as a number of book chapters, and regularly judges digital awards. She has a strong media presence, with her expertise featured in a wide range of publications and programmes, including national, international and specialist TV, radio and press, and can be found all over social media, typically as @drbexl.