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1 Year Post Treatment Survivor

blands's picture
blands
Posts: 2
Joined: Jun 2001

In January 2000, my own business was slow so I was working part-time as a furniture stripper in my friend's antique restoration shop.

By February, a lump had appeared on my waistline and it made fastening my belt a little bit uncomfortable. My doctor said to observe it for a few weeks. In march, he sent me to a surgeon, who ordered a CT scan. He removed a swollen lymph node on April 7, 2000. In late April the results of the biopsy samples came back positive for hd. My surgeon called me at my office and just said, "Mr. Lands, you have cancer." That blew my away and I turned to the video production customers I had been meeting with and said, "I have cancer. Let's finish this meeting tomorrow." My case was then referred to Scott & White
Hospital in Temple, Texas. The wait for staging began. Patients refer to Scott & White as "Sit & Wait.

In mid June of 2000, I saw my new oncologist and he me get all the scans
and tests that hd patients get. It was before PET came to Texas, so I got a gallium scan. I got the bone marrow biopsy which came out negative. I was told later that my staging was I-A.

I got the first tx of 3 cycles of Adriamycin and Vinblastine(spelling?) chemo on the first Friday in August of our hottest summer and fall in 100 years. During my chemo I had leaking of the veins since I didn't get a port. I developed phlebitis or shingles (painful as anything)3 times. I was on Cipro the first time and Ceflex(spelling?) the next 2 times. Mid term scans were clear; remission after 3 tx's. My saline drip was tripled and the leaking never developed again.

Three weeks after chemo, I began radiation in November of 2000. I got radiation to three areas over several weeks. First was pelvis and lower abdomen. I had to wear a two piece external testicular block made of lead that weighed around 6 pounds. This thing was a real headache each time. It had to be balanced on a rolled up towel and taped from both legs after I laid down so that it wouldn't fall off while I was positioned on the table. This went on for 4 weeks. After Christmas vacation, I got upper abdominal rads for a few weeks. The last part was upper chest and neck. I got the horrible sore throat thrush and was unable to eat anything but watermelon for 10 days. I took the medicated stuff to swish in my mouth and throat and a lot of pain pills too. The druggist recommended acidophilus cultures to stop the thrush infection. It worked great and then I just had to build my counts and strength back up slowly.

I had a clean PET scan last month and I celebrated the one year anniversary of my last rads tx on March 12th. That's my first year post treatment with many more to celebrate from now on.

The only lasting effects I have since treatments are sensitive teeth and a long-lasting rash on my face, back and shoulders.

All survivors feel free to share your stories with me. Feel free to email me if you have questions on my treatment schedule. I look forward to hearing from you.

Barry Lands, Bryan, Texas
40 years old dx'd hd I-A April 2000, 3 cycles AV chemo and radiation to lymph nodes ending March 2001
Follow-up PET scan on Feb. 21, 2002
No Lymphoma Found! Cancer Free!
"We can conquer the beast and beat Hodgkin's disease"

debrah
Posts: 4
Joined: Feb 2002

Congratulations to you for your clean check-up. I am heading into one the first week in april. Before that I am actually going to Texas!! I leave for Austin this Saturday. I will send good thoughts your way since I will be so close :-)

Hodgkins is just plain scary and I find as I am further away from the last occurrence I had the more alone I feel. It is uncomfortable to speak of cancer when you are back at work and looking like a survivor. Deep inside I still struggle with it as a recurring nagging thought. However, I sure have learned a lot from the experience and that is mostly to wake up each morning glad I have another day to spend. Best to you.

blands's picture
blands
Posts: 2
Joined: Jun 2001

Debrah:

Thank you so much for the nice reply. Have a great trip and don't sweat the follow-up.

I do wish you all the best for a clean scan and continued cancer free life. Please let me know how it goes.

Don't party too much on 6th street. Have a great time!

carpentert's picture
carpentert
Posts: 13
Joined: Apr 2002

Don't you just hate those bone marrow biopsy's!!!!

wallpa's picture
wallpa
Posts: 24
Joined: Apr 2002

Bone marrow biopsies! BLECH!

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