Mar 19, 2002 - 9:50 pm
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
In mid June of 2000, I saw my new oncologist and he me get all the scans
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