Friday, December 3, 2010

Progression of mets

Our [Geoff and my] visit to my oncologist in Chapel Hill did not go so well. We did not do any scans but sat with Dr. Muss and explained that my quality of life has disappeared and I want it fixed. Dr. Muss has always said that, with bone metastases, the only way to gauge progression is to see how I feel. There are no tumors that can be measured when the cancer is in the bone. And I feel lousy. Every day. I'm taking a lot of pain medicine that helps but does not help enough. And there's no explanation for that. So, after 2 short months on Faslodex, we're moving on.

Last night, I had to dig out my new old friend "the wig." I don't know where all my sleep caps ended up so I had to order new ones. Yes, folks, I'm going back on the fun, hard core, lose your hair chemo. Starting December 29. It's not like I was planning a big New Years party anyway.

The plan is to start weekly Taxol and Avastin treatments on 12/29. I assume I'll receive about 12 treatments, if I can tolerate it. Taxol is notorious for causing bad peripheral neuropathy [numbness in the fingers]. Since I already have that, I may be retiring my typing job of writing appellate briefs for good. [I'm already on disability but working a little bit still]. You may have heard about Avastin recently because the FDA tried to ban its use in metastatic breast cancer patients. That's because although it helped slow progress of the disease, it did not extend their life. So, who cares that it helped people double their "progression free survival." It's all about survival in this game. To hell with how we feel during that survival period.

I'm thrilled to be bringing out the big guns, and ok with the hair loss too. See, I have very little quality of life. We went to Amelia Island, Florida for Thanksgiving. We ate very nice meals. Tried to drink a little wine here and there. On the 2 occasions I tried to overeat and have more than 2 glasses of wine, I had to retreat to our hotel room, lie face down on the bed, and try and keep the vomit down. So, two of my favorite activities, eating and drinking, are seriously limited right now. I have a great appetite, mind you, and have still managed to gain a few pounds. But if I overeat at all I get sick. So, not too fun.

If you live near us, and are able to help, please do so. Our office manager, Gladys, will be taking names and phone numbers again at 251-8333. In January, we'll need help with meals and with driving the girls to and from gymnastics. I'm going to plan on being in bed for 3 months. Hopefully I'll be more functional than that but considering how little I do now before chemo, it's not looking too good.

Happy holidays everyone! I hope you enjoy this time of year and all of its blessings.