Posts Tagged ‘arimidex’

October 19, 2010

It’s been over ten days I’ve beeen living with this super hard mass in my left chest.  Today I had my regular appointment with Dr. Schott, Oncologist at U of M.  She sent me for an ultrasound, and the verdict is……………..!  Right–no real answer.  They are pretty sure it is not a tumor, but no idea of what it is….well. they have an idea.  It might be fat necrosis, none of the docs are 100% sure. 

SO-the plan is to watch it and wait……….

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back to blood tests

January 12, 2010

Since I am going back to the vampires again tomorrow for my every other week blood test, I thought I’d better have the results of the last blood test, way back in 2009 (12/30, I think.)  Since NP Joan is gone on vacation it was incumbant upon me to call for test results.

This time I didn’t have all the anxiety that zapped me just before Christmas.  Guess I’m finally getting mellow about it all.  Maybe the LACK of estrogen is responsible for my “c’est la vie” attitude.  Yes, the estradial test level came back at 2.  Remember, I need low estrogen levels for my maintainance drug to work properly. 

Arimidex is a little white nondescript pill that I greet every morning with, “you’re gonna go and save my life now little buddy, right?”  God, I hope this works.  Only time will tell I guess.

A New Year

January 3, 2010

So this has been on my mind since Christmas.  What does this new year mean to me?  What are my dreams for 2010?  To be certain, I don’t have any fantasies of forgetting about cancer, or being cancer free.  That will never happen.  I understand that now.  “Remission” is a concept….and one I’ll not treat my brain to until I stop refilling the Arimidex ‘script (around November 2014, if all goes well in the next five years.)   And for the idea of being “cancer-free”?  Not possible, I don’t think.  It’s kind of like being a mom.  Once you have a baby, that child is always a part of you, even when they grow up and move away.  Which, by the way,  is my plan for cancer.  When I grow up, it’s gonna move away.  Still in my mind though.

I could say that I’ve turned over a new leaf and I’m going to start living healthier, except…I already was.  I already was living a healthy life (stated with undertones of sarcasm) with lots of pysical and mental activity, eating right, was fairly well informed and doing good things for my community.  So I pledge to be healthier.  I am examining every bite I eat, adding the minutes of real exercise and reducing alcohol intake to a minimal amount, consumed only if seated at a meal.  I am meditating every day, examining my motives, and trading stress for zen, well, at least I’m working on that last part.  Even though I think I’m doing well when I step on the scales, I’ll be losing more weight. 

So this is what I want for the New Year.  Well, to be honest, I want a lot of things, but mostly what I want is to feel like I have made a difference.  I hope that I have influenced someone to take their health care seriously.  Not just in the real gritty mean streets of cancer land, but in all health matters….listen to your body.  (I do kind of feel like a hypocrite with that last thought, because I was the queen of denial last Spring.) 

I am still dedicated to the idea of using this stupid cancer as a teachable experience.  I don’t know exactly how to best do that, but I am trying.  I’d love it if my story became the impetus for someone nagging their mother, their sister, their friend, themselves to pick up the phone and make an appointment for a mammogram.  I hope that women, once in their Doctor’s office, or with a Nurse Practitioner, demand to be shown how to do a good and effective Breast Self Exam for themselves, and not feel uncomfortable about itGod knows if groups like the U.S. Preventive Task Force (see my post from November 19th) have their way, you’ll really be on your own with detecting breast cancer. 

So in the end, I refuse to say that 2009 has been a bad year.  It has been a hell of a year, but it could have been worse.  I could have had a Doctor who didn’t notice the lump…the same lump I didn’t feel.  I’m grateful for Cindy Parke (Certified Nurse Midwife extraordinaire) beyond words.  Without her experienced touch, I don’t even want to think about where I might be today.

anxious, disappointed, waiting….

December 23, 2009

and it ain’t for Santa.

Exactly one week ago I travelled 20-some miles to one of the few Quest Lab in the area to get my biweekly blood test to check my estrogen level.  Too much estrogen floatin’ around in my body is bad.  It means the daily dose of Arimidex* I am taking to inhibit my estrogen loving cancer from finding a place to cozy up and reproduce can’t do its job.  As my new BFF’s in the oncology department at U of M said, “it is as if you are taking nothing at all.”  Ouch. 

NP Joan expected to hear from the lab today.  I called and left emails.  Usually she emails back.  I have obsessively checked my emails, and kept my cell phone in my hand.  Wouldn’t normally be babysitting this thought quite so carefully except that last blood test was higher than expected, and Joan suggested I hold off renewing the exorbitantly expensive ‘script if I had a few days left.  If the E level came back high this time, she would have…….what….I don’t know.  We never got that far in the conversation.  It was a wait and see.  I just don’t know if I can hold my breath all the way till next week without breaking something.  Like me.

I am so disappointed I could cry.  Trying to convince myself that another week without an answer won’t make any difference, but my brain can’t seem to let it go.

*For more info on Arimidex: http://drugarimidex.wordpress.com/author/forestadowns/