Angie West

First post: Sep 18, 2021 Latest post: Dec 28, 2022
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting. 

The Beginning: In the summer of 2019 I developed extremely large lymph nodes on the right side of my neck. After having lymph node removal, Northside couldn't determine a diagnosis and the slides were sent to Mayo. Mayo's opinion was also inconclusive but basically they said, "it's not lymphoma now but we can't rule out that it won't be in the future."

The Middle: I did see an oncologist in 2020 who did every work-up possible and I continued to get inconclusive findings. I do have an autoimmune condition and so the thought was a lot of this was coming from that. The doctor told me to go live my life and come back if lymph nodes became enlarged somewhere else besides my neck. 

Intermediate times: In May, June, July and part of August 2021, I was the sickest I have ever been in my life. Initially I had shortness of breath, extreme fatigue and nausea (no, it was not COVID). The nausea turned into vomiting and associated weight-loss and then enlarged lymph nodes in my neck, under arms and groin. I went back to my doctor and had CT's and then a PET scan and finally another lymph node removal. These slides were also sent to Mayo and I now have a diagnosis.

Summer 2021: I was diagnosed with Peripheral T-cell Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma Not Otherwise Specified (PTCL-NOS). This is a kind of wax and wane type of illness meaning it will come and go. It is something you can kind of watch which is what we've unknowingly been doing for the past two years.  Now that we have an actual diagnosis my doctor feels like it's important to go and treat it at this time, primarily due to the weight-loss. I've lost over 30 pounds since May. Normally I would be super pumped about the weight loss because I've been trying to lose weight since for as long as I can remember. But, when I lost 15 pounds in 3 weeks followed by another 8 in just 1 week, even I became a little freaked out. It kinda sucks because  I'm actually feeling pretty good right now. Most of the symptoms I had have resolved. The good way to look at it though is now hopefully I'll be going into chemo a lot stronger than if I would have had to do it this summer. The doctor hopes to start treatment the last week of September. 

September 2021 through February 2022: I received 6 cycles of CHOEP chemotherapy. On Feb. 2nd, a PET scan showed I was in complete remission. On Feb. 22nd, I met with Dr. Bashey at the Blood and Marrow Transplant group at Northside Hospital. Dr. Bashey has further diagnosed me with a specific peripheral t-cell lymphoma, Angioimmunoblastic t-cell lymphoma. Due this being a rare cancer, Dr. Bashey recommends that I have a autologous stem cell transplant. This should greatly increase my odds of not having the cancer come back, or at least put it off for a longer period of time. If I don't have the transplant, my odds of it coming back are great and it will be harder to treat the next time. 

April 2022: On April 18th, I had an autogolous stem cell transplant (my own cells were used). I spent the first 2 days in ICU and hospital. I came home for 2-3 days and then spent the next 10 days in the hospital which was absolute hell recovering from high dose chemo. (As a side note, also in April I tore the ACL in my left knee, just before my transplant and will have surgery later this year. in November). 

Summer 2022: I just had my 3 month tests which showed a mild progression in the size of some lymph nodes. The doctor isn't too worried and we'll re-check everything in another 3 months. 

In October, my 6 months scans showed remission! And blookwork in December '22 shows normal WBC's and platelets and improving hemaglobin. I had  ACL reconstruction surgery on my left knee in November and recovery went great!I don't go back to the oncologist again until February and will have 1 year scans in April. 

That is my story up to this point. Keep the prayers coming. I need them!😃

Our Address is : 4196 Westchester Xing NE, Roswell, GA 30075. 

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