March 23, 2010

Chemo?

Yesterday I saw both the doc and the onc. I had scheduled an annual checkup with my primary care physician and her first available time was a bit before I was supposed to see the oncologist. (I did get a nice lunch in between.)

I apent almost an hour with Dr. Klein, my PCP. We reviewed everything and here are her take-aways:
I turned 50 and other than metastatic cancer, I appear to be in general good health, so I should have a colonoscopy.

The bumps on my head concern her, even if Dr. G biopsied a similar one on my shoulder blade and it was nothing. See the dermatologist.

If I really want to eat blueberries after 30+ years of thinking I might be allergic to them, see an allergist.
(Dr. K also called Dr. G about the results of my most recent blood work indicating anemia and possible kidney issues.)

Dr. Goldberg, Seattle's best oncologist, is concerned that the anemia might indicate my cancer is progressing. Bone marrow makes red blood cells and I have so much cancer in my bones, it's likely also in my bone marrow.

The Fareston is not working; tumor markers increased from last month to this. He is putting me back on Femara (letrozole) for a month, to see if it has any effect. If not, it's off to chemo land for me.

Dr. G recommends eitherAbraxane (paclitaxel nanoparticle albumin-bound) or Doxil (doxorubicin liposomal). I think I prefer Abraxane's side effects (neuropathy) to Doxil's (hand and foot syndrome, which I think would increase my lymphedema). It will also depend on what my health insurance will cover.

(I'm having trouble with HTML links to some pages. Click on ChemoCare and search for Abraxane or Doxil to learn more about these drugs.)

I am a little freaked by this since Megace and Fareston didn't work at all and I have basically had no effective treatment for almost a year. If you recall, last April the 5FU put me in the hospital for two weeks with life-threatening infections. Still, Dr. G assures me that my poor reaction to 5FU doesn't necessarily predict I will react the same way to Abraxane or Doxil.

2 comments:

  1. Wynne5:34 PM

    I wish you lots of luck in your decision. I have never been on Abraxane, but was briefly on Doxil, but I did get hand and foot syndrome. I hope that whatever you chose, that it is relatively easy and a "boring" treatment. I love boring!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I hate making those decisions ... wishing you the best with your choice.

    ReplyDelete

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