Its always something

I had great news recently… a new Medical Oncologist associated with Roper Hospital in Charleston told me I did not benefit from taking Tamoxifen, and so, I’ve been off it for almost 5 weeks now and feeling great.

In addition, I had a hyperplasia dental event and in addition to taking an antibiotic, also paused the high blood pressure meds Lisinopril (.01% chance it was the culprit).  Well, it is healing nicely and my bp has been reasonable with medication!

So I figure I’m finally finally feeling healthy again – and I am.

But it seems the world balance is maintained in a see saw of life, and my husband’s son (1st marriage) who is in England working on his PhD was out on his road bike and hit (from behind).  He’s been in the hospital now for 4 days in either excrutiating pain or drugged out of his mind on morphine.  He sustained 2 fractured vertabrae, a compound leg fracture between knee and ankle, and a fractured ankle.

Thank goodness he wears a helmet so no head injuries or internal injuries that have been revealed.  But he is suffering.  His mom is with him in England and will fly him back to the states (CT) as soon as he is able to fly (months from now?)

It is SO difficult for my husband to be separated by the distance and dependent upon any news…  we just heard he finally was taken into surgery (4 days later!!) late today…he was supposed to go yesterday but got bumped.

So we pray and wait for news and for his recovery.

To all our friends, please say a prayer for him – he is only 29 and this is most likely going to change his health for the rest of his life.


See Saw

Life…health.. I think the see saw is the perfect visual for the ups and downs.

After this wonderful news about not needing Tamoxifen, but just being on high blood pressure meds, my gums became puffy and developed triangular pockets, bleeding when flossed.

This has been happening for a week, and today, I have to assume it is the rare side effect of the Lisinopril…either directly, or indirectly in lowering a white blood cell count and making me more vulnerable to infection.

The infection is what scares me… with silicone implants, an infection could become systemic and focal and bring me back to surgery once again.  So, I went to the local Urgent Care clinic ( being sunday)…of course they were closed.  Ended up at a local ER hospital who gave me antibiotics.  Tomorrow I hope to see my PCP to review the antibiotics, blood pressure meds (which I’ve skipped tonight), and get a blood test to check the white blood cell count and coagulation.

We hope to return to Charleston on Wednesday if at all possible.

It seems too much to ask for some peace and boredom from medical issues ….  maybe thats the deal … learning to live with it.

A New Medical Oncologist

YES!!! Today I visited a new Medical Oncologist connected with Roper Hospital in Charleston, S.C.  He attended Duke Medical and interned there 25 years ago, so high credentials.

Tired of the production line of Duke myself, I had decided to solicit another opinion of my medical care as well as establish with a physician more accessible.

After going through my history and check up, we discussed why I was on Tamoxifen altogether, which was my initial question.  You see, Tamoxifen or an Aramatase Inhibitor is prescribed when there is a risk of invasive breast cancer.

I was diagnosed with DCIS – that is non-invasive cancer, still within the ducts.  Since it was all removed and as he described, I have about 1% of breast tissue remaining, there is a 1% chance of recurrence.  A far cry from the choice of radiation or Tamoxifen (or do nothing and wait) choice Duke presented.  He confirmed that radiation would have been totally unnecessary and overkill.  We discussed the risk of medication (thrombosis, stroke, cataracts, uterine cancer) to the benefit (now, none) and the conclusion was pretty clear.

So…instead of taking this vile drug for the next 4.5 years, I’m so over it!    He did however have high praise for the work of the reconstruction surgeon  😉

I almost cried.

Time Warp

The waiting game has returned…. deja vu and time warp rolled into one.

My insurance company does not work with the hospital my ob-gyn (who they do work with!)  is affiliated with, so I’m getting passed to another ob-gyn in her office that has an association at a hospital they do work with … but first, we’re waiting for her to read the files, then schedule a meeting with me (3/26?) and then schedule the procedure..when?  who knows.   I’m hoping it can be done the same week as the consultation.

Another friend of mine is awaiting surgery and the pathology report to determine her situation… scheduled 3/20……more waiting.

Another dear friend is struggling with vision problems and directing her energy to healing.  I admire her so greatly.  She conquered a brain tumor and she’ll get through this without abdicating all the love and joy in her life.

And so I return to the words of John Lennon…“The unknown is what it is. And to be frightened of it is what sends everybody scurrying around chasing dreams, illusions, wars, peace, love, hate, all that.  Unknown is what it is.  Accept that it’s unknown, and it’s plain sailing” – John Lennon

Our emotions want to embrace fear… our minds need to be strong and allow us to enjoy our lives… every moment is a new ‘day’.

A New View

Charleston, SC.  bound.  Instead of traveling to  Duke for much longer, I have a consultation scheduled with a Medical Oncologist associated with  Roper Hospital in Charleston.  So now, we can live, play and have short drives to my Dr. for management of post-cancer checkups!  I’m really hoping this works out well.  I have one visit at Duke in December with the surgery dept for a checkup… and then, done with those long Raleigh drives for medical – just playtime ( biking and kayaking).

This weekend, I have an SUP Intro class!  Then a CPR class on Sunday for the ACA Certification requirement to renew…. I see a lot more fun in my future (except for end of month for the hysteroscopy here)!

During the ECCKF, I’ll be helping SKC, but take time to take a SUP Fitness class and an advanced rolling class… and then, another IDW/ICE in SUP!   At the end of the month, REI Greenville is having their Paddlefest day and we’ll be there to offer 3 free workshops… crazy busy fun….

And thats what it should be…

Another Procedure

By now, you have to be getting exhausted about hearing what my life experiences are!  Well, as far as the medical stuff, me too.

Today we had the saline solution with transvaginal ultrasound.  The procedure took about 10 minutes…not bad… and revealing.  It did indeed identify 2 polyps in my uterine wall.  So now I’m scheduled to have a hysteroscopy on 3/26.  Outpatient, and restrictive afterward…. the hard part?  No water immersion for 2 weeks following (besides the post-cramps, etc.)

So yes, I do feel a lot like Elastic Girl, being stretched in every which way.  Once this is done, there won’t be a single part of my female anatomy that hasn’t been poked, prodded, scooped out, cut, cauterized, stitched…well, you get the idea.

However, BIG relief in that it is not uterine cancer!  The uterine wall is 2mm – perfect except for those 2 polyps.  I think some women opt for manicures and facials… I must have signed off on female treatments somewhere….

So I’m guessing you may be curious – what is a hysteroscopy… well, it is a technique used to look inside the uterus.  A hysteroscope is a then, telescope like device that is placed into the uterus.  It contains a wire that also cauterizes what is this case, the polyp.

BTW – also pausing the Tamoxifen (maybe cause of high blood pressure) while taking a BP med…  I’ll probably resume Tamoxifen following the procedure sometime on advice of a Medical Oncologist…

But… I really (in the words of Cyndie Lauper) just want to have fun!


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