Jul 27, 2004 - 12:27 pm
I haven't posted much lately. I have logged on, but quite honestly I was so worried about my testing, I couldn't handle it some days. A little history. I was dxed February 26th with a large tumor very low in my rectal area. More testing showed it had spread to my liver (2 measurable tumors and dozens of microscopic ones) and 1 spot on my lung my onc thought could be a tumor. I started Oxil, Leu, 5FU (folfox 6) and Avastin April 6th after having a port inserted.
After a month on chemo and having a simple cold knock me on my butt, I ordered a months supply of IMMUNOPOWER EZ (a combination of many vitamins, minerals, and herbs promoted by Dr. Patrick Quillin, the Nutritional Director of the Cancer Centers of America. I will always be appreciative of Emily (currently, the beach bum) and her sharing of his book, "Beating Cancer with Nutrition" when I posted here the very first time. Immonopower EZ is pricey, but I decided my health was worth it. I am also taking 4 other supplements. And, yes all were approved by my onc and the head pharmacist. I have been very fortunate to be tolerating the chemo about as well as one can. I live by myself with my boxer pup, Scout, and 2 cats, but have loads of support friends and family. I am a "glass is half full" kind of person, but am also pretty stubborn too. Maintaining as normal a life as I can is very important to me, and forcing myself to eat and get off my butt is a struggle sometimes, but it always helps the "bad" side effects.
Now for the good results of my testing. My CEA count has dropped from 35 to 10, my WBC is actually higher now, then it was when I started chemo. My RBC is also going up, but not as drastically as the WBC has. The spot on my lung had about a 25% shrinkage and appears to be a tumor. The 2 tumors in my liver also had shrunk, 30 and 40%. What my onc thought were microscopic tumors had not changed either way and he now thinks they are simply spots that have probably been there since I was born. The large tumor in the rectal area did not have much change and it is behaving itself. All of my abdominal lymph nodes are normal in size leading my onc to believe the cancer spread when my colon perforated or during the emergency surgery last fall.
The gameplan is to continue the chemo regime once every 3 weeks instead of every 2 until September 10th, when we test again. At that time, he hopes to confirm additional tumor shrinkage as well as that the tiny spots on the liver are just that. Then surgical options come into play.
I was very pleased and relieved. The last 2 weeks I have tried to stay busy with my canning and gardening (two of my passions, and the onc nurses are addicted to my homemade salsa) and watch Lance kick butt. I went out of town this past weekend and forgot my supplements and much to my surprise, fatigue almost overpowered me when I returned home. After 2 days of being more tired then I have ever felt, I remembered my pills. I ate a big breakfast yesterday and then took all 12 pills. Within 3 hours, my brain showed back up and then my energy level improved. Maybe, it was psychological, but I will not miss my pills again. I woke up today feeling much more rested.
I have learned so much on this site, that I felt it was important to share my experiences with those of you that share yours with me. I know I still have a hell of a fight on my plate, but with your support and that of my family and friends I intend on continuing to kick the unwelcome "bastard" cells out of my bod!!!!
Hugs and kisses to you all!!!!!