Friday, July 22, 2011

Looks Like WBR After All

Yesterday was my birthday - I'm now 47 and expect to have many more birthdays!

I am doing okay. I think the time at the coast helped me regain some of my mental and physical strength. I might have slept a lot, but I also took long walks on the beach, too.

I saw the radiation oncologist - the one who does gamma knife in Portland - and he suggested that I do whole brain radiation at this time. It is because of the size (about 3.3 to 3.5 cm by 2.2 cm), the irregular area of it (it is not perfectly round), and because there is a cystic component. The good news is that it is not next to the area that causes nausea or vomiting. He also didn't think I needd to start right away. But I decided to go ahead and start next week.

My digestive system is healing. I don't get the cramps like I used to in my stomach. I still just have diarrhea and the only time I really have any nausea is with Tykerb. So, I am off of Tykerb for a few weeks.

I am only going to do 10 treatments of WBR. I have already had 2. They want to do 13. I'm doing to stop it at 10. I also want to start with a lower dose next week - 200 rads (or whatever the measurement is). The usual at this point is 250. But as I've said before, I think the standard doses are for women (or men) who are bigger than I am. I want to see how well I tolerate the treatment.

In the meantime, through the weekend, I will stay on antibiotics. This is because a new wound opened up under my arm - where an area grew. It also bled a lot when I took the dressing off yesterday. So, I took all three Keflex (only took 1 a day for the last week and a half) yesterday and a Flagyl. I want to try to take all three through this weekend to see if that clears up that infection. I saw the wound care nurse yesterday instead of today. I won't take the antibiotic when I start WBR next week. The area where we're trying to grow skin is 2.5 x 0.5 cm, down from 3.5 x 1.0 cm last week. So, that's healing. The chest wound is also healing.

I guess I'm okay with the decision. It will all (or most of it) will happen while Eddie is bak East with his dad.

All in all I broke even at the casino. Pretty good for several days of playing. My sister, though, won about $300. She stopped when she won. Smart girl.

My parents got me a card and flowers. My son also got me a card and a gift certificate to a local coffee place. We treated ourselves to yummy summer drinks there yesterday, after his appointment. I also got a card from my oldest friend, P., who I need to write an email to. I got a card from my supervisor, too. That was cool. Plus over 100 well wishes from Facebook friends. My cousin and her husband are visiting last night and today. They head on up to our cousin up north later this afternoon.

My biggest problem is that I can't seem to relax my shoulder and arms enough. I'll relax them to go to sleep - and will sleep for a few hours (last night about 5 or so), but then I can't get comfortable again. It seems that laying down is the only way to relax them, so I tend to nap a lot.

I will meet with my grad student later today and see about getting her started on a couple of projects. A friend of mine also moved into my office - it will be interesting to see how she moved things around!

Have a good Friday!


Joanna said...

Happy Birthday, Dee! It sounds like you are getting healthier. I know there is more to be done and much more healing on the horizon, but you do have some progress which is a good omen. I hope the WBR is just what is needed and that you tolerate it well.

Again Happy Birthday. I hope this year is one that is healthy and fulfilling.


Carver said...

Happy Birthday a little late! I'm sending out good thoughts for you.