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Post-radiation initial follow-up appt. today : "So far, so good".

lindaprocopio's picture
Posts: 2022
Joined: Oct 2008

My chemo oncologist and my radiation oncologists couldn't be more different. My chemo oncologist is always laughing and optimistic and called me on Sunday to shout out the NED results from Friday's CT-scan. But my radiation oncologist is soooo much more sedate. His response to my NED CT-scan and check-up today was a limp-noodle "So far, so good". What does THAT mean?? Good now, but maybe not good later??!! I KNOW that! But I'm a big believer in celebrating ALL good news WITHOUT the cautionary 'what ifs'. Anyhoooo, I don't need to see him again for 4 months for another routine check-up.

It was a strange follow-up visit for radiation, I thought. He did an internal pelvic exam; AND a combination digital rectal/vaginal palpatation exam. (fun fun.) He deemed everything "good". He checked the ankle and foot that have been swelling when I'm on my feet a lot and said that it was typical for patients who have had their lymph nodes radiated (during the pelvic radiation) to have scarring that causes this swelling. I'm just to keep putting my feet up every chance I get, and if it bothers me a lot, get compression stockings. But he didn't seem worried about the swelling, so I won't be either. My blood pressure was down to my normal perfect range, and I've dropped 7 pounds (8 to go until my pre-cancer weight). He asked about my bowels and urination and if there was pain during sex, etc. He seemed pleased with me overall.

But that "So far, so good" irks me a little. I feel WONDERFUL! I know I'm not 100% cured or anything. But I'm NED, and 'so far so good' is just too understated. Thankfully the REST of the radiation staff (nurses, techs, receptionists, P.A.) all whooped it up about the clear CT-scan, and hugged me and told me I looked FABULOUS with my eyelashes and brows and tiny new hair and beach suntan.

Next week I have appointments with my 'glass-half-full' chemo-onc and the hospital's brand-new gyn-onc for bloodwork and PAP, and i will probably schedule my annual mammogram right away and get my teeth cleaned; then I think I'll have 3 beautiful "no-doctor" months to pretend I don't have cancer and pack in as much living as I can.

lociee's picture
Posts: 102
Joined: Apr 2009

Your entry made me laugh. My guys are the opposite. The radiologist is always "going for a cure" - the oncologist gave me 9-12 months! Anyway, I've learned that the true is THEY DON'T KNOW! Every treatment - every day - brings something new - changes something - and you're right - we can just need to celebrate the small successes - or not so small, like NED!

fuzzytrouble's picture
Posts: 213
Joined: Feb 2009

Hey Linda I think it's good news for you all around, my ankles still swell and the bottom of my feet hurt like heck if I stand on them too long. How crazy to have one up beat doctor and one oh-hum type. lol
I planted roses today and felt so sore after and couldn't walk to good but I felt normal. lol
Being away from the doctors for awhile feels scary but so good.
You have the right state of mind and so do I now, and I think that is very good for the soul.

Hugs for you from Oregon,

Posts: 743
Joined: Oct 2008

You don't have to pretend that you don't have cancer... you DON'T have cancer! I choose to believe that I HAD cancer and they removed it all when they did my surgery last September. The chemo and radiation were just my insurance against reoccurance! Doesn't that sound so much better though? I HAD cancer.
It is difficult to deal with downer doctors. My gyn/onc is like that. I have had 2 positive conversations with him in the last year. After each biopsy he said "I am taking this as a good sign." That is about as positive as he gets. LOL.
Glad you are doing so well. I am glad you posted about the radiation to the lymph nodes. Makes sense. My feet and legs swell too when I travel or when I am on them a lot. I hadn't thought of the compression stockings. That is a good suggestion, something to consider anyway.
Enjoy your 3 months off.
Love ya girl

Teresa 61's picture
Teresa 61
Posts: 84
Joined: Dec 2008

Happy to hear everything is going well. I'am with you, get all your doctor and dentist appointments over with and enjoy the next 3 months as a free spirit...
Reading the posts you girls wrote reminded me I'am not alone with my aches and pains. Just got over a month of lower back pain now my upper inside right leg hurts when I walk and my feet swell up too... does this ever end!!!!!! Oh well, NED is all that is important , we will deal with the rest.
Hugs, Teresa

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