Amie’s Story

Site created on October 27, 2017

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. 

My story begins with a persistent unproductive cough in April of 2017.  I went to the walk in clinic in May and being a healthy, young non-smoker, the doctors thought it  might be allergies.  Allergy treatment didn't improve the cough, so I went back to my primary care doctor in June and we tried another of the three main causes of persistent cough in healthy non-smokers: adult onset asthma.    The inhaler got my through my Ragnar relay race in July, but the cough was still there and not improving.   A repeat trip back found me on drugs for reflux, the third main cause of persistent cough.   A few weeks on the drug didn't seem to improve the cough, so then I headed to a specialist, had an endoscopy and a study with a chip implanted in my esophagus and a device I wore and pushed a button each time I coughed for 48 hours.   The results of that study told us that yes, I had mild reflux, but the refulx events were not aligning with my cough.  This was September of 2017, I'd started back to work for the 2017-2018 school year, and I found myself missing days of work.   By Friday or even Thursday I'd be so tired and nauseated I couldn't function.  My primary care phyiscian schedule an appointment with a lung specialist and as a prerequisite for that visit, a chest X-ray was ordered.   That was October 9th, and I went in that day for the x-ray and that started a whirlwind of tests.  A CT scan, which led to my lung appointment being moved forward three weeks, then a biopsy that told us it was cancer.    It was still another week or so before I finally received my full diagonosis:  stage 4 adenocarcinoma of the lung.   This is a cancer that is increasingly being  seen in young female non-smokers- even what they call "never-smokers" like me.   The good news is that I appear to also have a gene mutation that is responsible for the abnormal cell growth called ROS1.   The mutation can be treated with targeted therapy.

I started treatment with Xalkori (crizotinib) targeted therapy November 4, 2017.   Initial scans showed reduction in all tumors, and have continued to show small reductions since.

Newest Update

Journal entry by Amie Parker

Just a quick update for you all.   Mostly because I see my last update was in October, and I tend to start getting questions if I wait too long to share how things are going.

I went down yesterday for another chemo infusion.   This was supposed to happen on Dec 28th, but with Luke's knee surgery being rescheduled to the 27th, I asked to push chemo back a week so I could better support Luke's recovery.   And it's a good thing I did!  Nursing a post-knee surgery teen is a full-time job!!  

I had my regular 12-week CT scan the week before which showed everything is still stable.    Bloodwork was mostly good, with some of my infection-fighting cells being low, but not low enough to make it so that I couldn't do the chemo infusion.

So no real news, just carrying on!

Patients and caregivers love hearing from you; add a comment to show your support.
Help Amie Stay Connected to Family and Friends

A $30 donation to CaringBridge powers a site like Amie's site for one month. Will you make a gift to help ensure that this site stays online for them and for you?

Comments Hide comments

Show Your Support

See the Ways to Help page to get even more involved.