I had a Skype link with Surgeon David Read for the results of the second surgery.
Result – They have found some precancerous cells in the margin and he recommends another small operation to remove them!
Honestly I felt my breast quiver in pain. I just wanted to cry!
Shit shit shit shit! Where does it stop?
David explains that these are cells that will develop into cancer in 7-10 years time so it is best to remove them now. It will mean another day surgery, small op to remove another sliver of tissue to remove the cells, extending the scar/incision a bit more.
Shaun and I reeling as we make plans to return to Darwin in 2 days to undergo another operation, which will include day surgery, general anaesthetic and another 2 weeks of very sore and bruised boob. A small price to pay I know – but it is exhausting.
David advises me that following meeting with other surgeons and discussion with Meena the oncologist that this has a very high success rate and that mastectomy is not necessary at this stage.
I know this next operation is best thing to do, but it is hard! Maybe I should have a full mastectomy and get it over and done with.
On the other hand there is not a lot of noticeable damage to my breast and I would like to conserve it if I can.
At what cost do I save my breast? Not sure – but I think if anything else suspicious arises it will be time to go down the Mastectomy path!
A Skype meeting with Oncologist Meena the following day. She says that she believes there is no need for radical surgery and that this is a further step in security that the cancer will not return. I forgot to ask her if this meant in the other breast as well?
We then discuss blood test results and Chemo times. I now have to have a CT Scan here in Katherine tomorrow (Monday 8th April) = Leave home at 6 am to travel to Darwin on Tuesday for a meeting at 10.30 am to begin the process of admission for the first dose of chemo to commence on 23rd April. 11.30am book into Hospital for the surgery.
The drugs I will be treated with are DOCETAXEL and CYCLOPHOSPHAMIDE – four doses – once every three weeks. The process will involve regular blood tests, and 2.5 hours sitting in a chair at the Alan Walker Cancer Centre. Will still also have to have the 5 weeks Radiotherapy after the chemo.
We also have to have an appointment at the Cancer Centre this week to prepare for the treatment which will involve injections to boost white blood cells, blood tests and all the side affects that may affect me – nausea, hair loss, mouth ulcers, food tasting like metal, painful joints, tiredness etc etc.
I think it is only just starting to sink in that this is going to be a long tedious journey – that anything can happen at any time.
I am physically and mentally prepared to take it on which ever way it goes. I try not to worry about too far down the track – just make the best decision and deal with each issue as it arises.
In the middle of all this I have started work at the Museum which is undergoing major renovations and a public opening on the 9th May. I can’t lift or move anything which is very annoying!
Went to the dentist yesterday and have 2 shonky teeth, one with an abscess – one taken out yesterday and the other next week. Better not to have anything that may get infected when under chemo. Will sort them out and get some dental work done when this is all over.
Sounds like pretty interesting time ahead. Not looking forward to it!
Just read a great piece of advice about cancer. ‘You may not like the script, but you are in the Directors chair. If you can’t be selfish now, I don’t know when you can!’