Twenty nine years of being cancer-free lulled me into believing I would never again face this challenge. That thinking was dashed with a positive metastatic stage 2 breast cancer diagnosis on Tue, Aug 31st.
The pathology report was posted on MyChart at Providence Hospital at 3 pm on Tuesday, Aug 31st and Blake and I were in my 1992 surgeon’s office at 3:30 pm that day. My surgeonn, Dr. Laurie Bleicher, immediately involved Dr. Theodore Kim at Katmai Oncology and Dr. William Magnuson at Anchorage Oncology for radiation therapy. Tomorrow morning I have surgery to put in an IV port to receive the chemotherapy which starts on Thursday, September 16th 1x/week for 3 months. The line up is chemo, surgery and radiation which is traditionally surgery, chemo and radiation. The reason for this sequence deviation is the doctors hope to shrink the tumor before surgery to reduce the risk of lymphodema.
The GOOD news is this cancer is estrogen and progesterone positive to the highest degree which should respond well to chemical manipulation. It is NOT the same cancer I fought in 1992 which was hormonal negative. While being shocked to be going down this path again I’m confident the process will be less physically destructive than taking cytoxan, adrimycin and 5fluouraurcl which proved to be physically brutal and required at least 5 years to rebalance my body. Mamma print and blue print did not exist in 1992. These tests can pinpoint which one of the of the 4 cancers I have so Dr. Kim can tailor my "chemical cocktail" to greatest advantage.
So today I am off to surgery to put in an intravaneous port to accept the chemo.
My goals are #1 to eliminate the cancer and #2 NOT to have Lymphodema in my left arm. Sadly, the SOP in 1992 was to remove lymph nodes which in my case proved to be negative yet left me with a lifetime of Lymphodema in my right arm.
Blake and I will remain in Anchorage for treatment and I've set up this CaringBridge site to keep you up to speed on treatment and to share my thoughts during the process.
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
I am a strong believer in energy. Energy is prayer, positive thoughts, good intentions, white energy, whatever term works for you. It is whatever medium YOU believe in. So what I ask is that you beam me positive, healing energy in whatever form you believe.