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New Kid on the Block and Question about Driving

Rickyr1219's picture
Rickyr1219
Posts: 54
Joined: Jul 2012

I stumbled on the discussion board from googling different things I didn't understand about EC. I am T3N1M0 Stage 3. Supposed to start Combined Chemo/Radiation Aug 6th and I've been so anxious about it all. So glad to have found this to see that others have already been where I am headed. Drs were going to use Proton Based Radiation Therapy but my Insurance right now has declined this method of treatment and unless they can be convinced, I may be getting the regular Radiation Treatment if there is such a thing.

Surgeon did try an Endoscopic Mucosal Resection but the pathology report after the surgery still showed cancer cells.

Is driving to and from treatments something I will be able to do or is it better left to someone else? Since I don't feel bad right now or anything and have all these great plans of continuing to do my office job, drive etc.... Am I just fooling myself?

Ricky

Bermudagirl
Posts: 120
Joined: Jun 2012

Hi Ricky,

Welcome to the club, albeit one that none of us really want to be in!

My boyfriend, Dave, who is the same status as you, is just starting his second week of chemo/radiation, and is doing well. He has been able to drive himself to radiation daily, and he also has a continuous infusion of the drug 5FU going. Granted he's tired, but doing okay.

Be sure to tell us all of your "vital statistics"; there are wonderful people here, like William who first welcomed you, that can guide you through this maze.

Sandy

Rickyr1219's picture
Rickyr1219
Posts: 54
Joined: Jul 2012

Thanks Sandy for your welcome. I'm sure with Dave being a couple of weeks ahead of me in treatment that I will be following your posts on here very close.

My Dr mentioned me taking a Pill and then a drip of something each Monday. I was surprised about the PIll with them doing Chemo and Radiation at the same time because I read where the radiation has a tendency to make it hard to swallow things. Guess if the pill becomes too much they can switch me to an infusion.

Rickyr1219's picture
Rickyr1219
Posts: 54
Joined: Jul 2012

Thank you William for your response.

I'm 55 Years Old and Live in the Houston TX Area. I've been going to MD Anderson Cancer Center here and is supposed to be one of the Best Cancer Centers I think in the World.

My Primary Doctor with oversight of all that goes on is Dr. Jaffer Ajani. My Thoracic Surgeon that performed the EMR is Dr. Wayne Hofstetter and my Radiation Oncologist is Dr. Zhongxing Liao.

It was by accident (or Divine Intervention) that my cancer was found. I had a bad case of Bronchitus and was coughing my head off. Went to my Primary Care Physician and she gave me a steriod shot, antibiotics. The following week I had some pain in my right abdomen and a bulge that stuck out further on my right side than what my left side looked like. Ended up getting that area xrayed and unltrasounds on the abdomen but nothing was showing up as to what was causing the pain. After going through another set of xrays and CT scan it was determined that it was just muscle strain from coughing. I didn't believe it and it was not getting any better so I was referred to an orthopedic dr. He did another xray and found a back rib in that area had a cracked and was the source of the pain.

They also referred me to my gastro dr who has seen me for several years and he performed a colonoscopy AND an Endoscopy because my last one in 2009 showed Barretts Esophagus. I was not even aware that he planned to do an ENDO on me and I was not having any problems swallowing anything. Pathology from that ENDO showed Cancer
and he referred me to MD Anderson Cancer Center.

More CT Scans, Xrays, and an ENDO with Ultrasound to stage my cancer. It came back T3N1M0 and tumor was about 2 CM covering 25% of the opening. That was followed up with a PET scan and the group of doctors met and because the cancer didn't absorb the material for the PET scan as they thought it would they thought it may not be staged right and decided to do the EMR.

Pathology from the EMR still showed cancer and Dr Ajani met with the group again and decided to do combined Chemo/Radiation daily for 5 1/2 weeks and then wait 5 1/2 before doing surgery. They have me in a research study being conducted by Dr. Steven H. Lin and planned treatment is:

Chemo using 5-fluorouracil and docetaxel and delivery of a total radiation dose of 50.4 Gy
to what's left of the tumor. This would be followed by surgery to remove part of esophagus and affected lymph node.

My treatment is scheduled to begin Aug 6th. I had heard of MIE but I have not reached that point yet.

William, I see where you are in your 10th year and you can't imagine the hope that hearing from someone like you does for someone like me. Thank you again for your response.

Rickyr1219's picture
Rickyr1219
Posts: 54
Joined: Jul 2012

Thanks so much for some good questions. Dr. Hofstetter does MIE which is a good thing. I'll ask about the HER2 Positive and if they tested me or not. Have not seen anything in their writeups about it.

I'm also going to ask the difference in Pills versus Constant Infusion and why they've chosen pill form for me.

The Drs are working with my Insurance right now on getting approval for the Proton Based Radiation Therapy in lieu of the IMRT. They tell me the Proton Therapy is easier on my surrounding organs. I figure every advantage like that I can get is one less issue to deal with later on.

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