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Getting shorter

Marynb
Posts: 1134
Joined: Aug 2012

This may be coincidence, but I have shrunk since treatment. When I started treatment I was 5 ft. 7 inches and this week I measured 5 ft. 5 inches. Right after treatment my daughter kept insisting that I had shrunk. Wondering if this could be a result from treatment? Anybody else have this happen so close to treatment?

jena58
Posts: 19
Joined: Apr 2013

I  haven't measured myself since treatment, but I sure hope I haven't shrunk, I'm only 5'4" as it is! But it kind of makes sense now that you bring it up. When you think of  all the muscles that have shrunk - I know my groin muscles are all shorter, tighter and a lot less flexible, so they've shrunk and the muscles in both oriffices have CERTAINLY shrunk. Kinda makes sense . Anyway I'm off to measure myself.......

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mp327
Posts: 2889
Joined: Jan 2010

I would say this is quite possible.  Perhaps it's a combination of the treatment, (which can cause osteoporosis, which can result in shrinking of height), and just normal aging.  I'm pretty sure my height has decreased by at least 1/2 inch over the past few years and my bone densitometry scans, of which I've had two post-treatment, have shown osteopenia, the phase before osteoporosis.  Have you had a baseline bone density test?  If not, it would be a good idea to get one.  Of course the shrinking is not the only concern.  I found out my bones are full of holes and weak spots, which is a worry for me, as I am a runner, which is hard on normal bones, let alone weakened ones.  I would highly recommend getting a baseline scan and see what's going on with your bone health. 

jena58
Posts: 19
Joined: Apr 2013

From what I understand,  the best preventative measure for osteo is exercise. I only ever did court sports, netball squash, etc. I could run around a squash court or netball court all day but could not have run any distance . Since cancer I have been on a running frenzy for fear of oosteoporosis since I believe due to the radiation we are candidates for early onset. I have a 12 year old son and 6 grandchildren aged 4 months to 9 years and I have no intention of going to their 21st, graduation, engagement or weddings in a wheel chair. My message is keep running, like Forrest Gump. I dream of being that 80 year old crossing the finish line of a marathon, i think it will take me 25 years to build up to it. It may not increase our height but as a massage therapist I really do believe it keeps muscles, bones, organs etc healthy. Run Forrest, run...

by the way, you must be up very early, it's 10pm here in Aussie.

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mp327
Posts: 2889
Joined: Jan 2010

I totally agree!  Running is great exercise and according to the latest information I've read, is not as hard on us as most non-runners believe.  I ran 5.3 miles yesterday on my treadmill.  I always feel better after a run--healthy and strong--and recover from the fatigue pretty quickly.  Do not give up your dream of running a marathon.  The pic I have on my profile here was taken in April 2012 right after I ran my very first (and only so far) marathon in 5 hours and 20 minutes.  Not fast, but way under the 6.5 hour time limit set for the race.  On 5/4/13, I ran a 15k race in horrible weather conditions--rain, wind, cold--and completed it in 1 hour, 34 minutes (and tack on another 4 minutes for the extra .4 miles we had to run because they laid out the course wrong!).  I finished 1st. in my age group, which sounds much more impressive than it was, as there was only one other female in my age group!  Getting old has its advantages--less competition!  LOL!  I ran both the marathon and the 15k with a good friend who is a 37-year old male.  He knows that he will not be able to run at his pace or else I would never keep up, so he slows to my pace and we just have fun.  I will keep running until I can no longer.  If you want to do a marathon bad enough, you will do it!  After having cancer, it became sort of an obsession with me, but without the support of friends, I would have talked myself out of even training for one, let alone actually doing one.  Start with some 5k's (which is really my race--28 minutes or so and I'm done!), and work your way up.  I couldn't agree with you more that exercise can keep us from crumbling, due to the effects of the radiation on our bones.  You are a massage therapist--oh, how I could have used your services after that marathon! 

BTW, if you want to read about someone who is a real inspiration when it comes to racing at an older age, check this out.      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madonna_Buder  This woman is amazing!  If she can't inspire you, no one can!  Good luck with reaching your goals!

jena58
Posts: 19
Joined: Apr 2013

Thanks for thee link mp327. I love reading inspirational stories. i ran the 5k 'run for the kids' , well actually ran/walked it, in march, anyway there was also a 15k event and a 101 year old man Indian fellow ran it!!! He started running marathons at aged 89. I'm not very tech savvy so I don't know how to post a link but you can google him. His name is Fauja Singh. As a little kid he couldn't even walk! Amazing. I encourage everyone, especially cancer survivors to get out and get moving, oxygenate those cells, healthy cells love oxygen, cancer cells HATE it!!!!

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mp327
Posts: 2889
Joined: Jan 2010

That guy is something else!  See, there's hope for us yet!  I can't imagine beginning running at age 89!  I googled Fauja Singh--I think I've seen his pic on FB before.  Unbelievable! 

I have had several hurdles to clear that don't necessarily make me a phenom, but as I always say, "A freak of nature!"  I was born with neuro-tube defect, which resulted in hydrocephalus (too much fluid on the brain), which was not diagnosed until I was 39 years old.  I underwent surgery to have a shunt put in my brain to drain the fluid--my brain drain!  When I was a small child, I was so pigeon-toed that I had to wear those clunky orthopedic shoes.  At night, my parents had to put my feet into a pair of shoes that were nailed to a board in an attempt to pull my feet and hips out.  It did not work and to this day, I am still pigeon-toed.  I'm sure I look really goofy when I run!  LOL!  I had a stress fracture of my 2nd. metatarsal in the right foot back in 2005, which was repaired at the same time a bunion was removed from that foot.  In order to fix the foot, the podiatrist also had to intentionally fracture my 1st. metatarsal to move it back into place, as it had been pushed way out by the bunion.  I now have a titanium screw in that bone.  That was a painful and lengthy recovery for me.  Well, then there was the cancer in 2008.  I think all of these things combined have made me more determined than ever to not let anything get me down.

Okay, now y'all know way more about me than you probably wanted to know!  Embarassed

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