Flu shot question & update on Heatherbelle

Options
Heatherbelle
Heatherbelle Member Posts: 1,226 Member

Hi! I hope everyone's enjoyed their holiday season & off to a great start in 2015! Newer members won't know me but I'm an oldie from 2010 when I was dx with Stage 2 bc. Dx again this summer with reis recurrence to lymph nodes on my cancer side (I had a dbl mastectomy in 2010 and bc CAN recur  after mastectomy in the surrounding lymph nodes and chest wall). After PET scan though I was also dx with metastasis to lymph nodes on the OTHER side, and possibly in my lung. A small nodule showed up on both my pre and post-radiation PET scans, in one of my lungs. I guess lung imaging can be iffy on a pet scan, and it must be a little different appearing, because my onc is hesitant to call it cancer in the lung based on the pet scans alone.

I had radiation to the main mass on my previous cancer side- it was some nodes & lots of inflammation and sitting right on my brachial plexus nerve system, so i suffered often excruciating pain until it shrank. But rads took care of it and the cancer has left the building...or rather, that side of the building :/ In addition to the radiation to the right side my onc started me on the oral chemo Xeloda to treat the other small spot on the other side. And my follow up pet scan shows that the xeloda didnt work, the spot is still there and has grown a tiny bit. The good news is the cancer has not spread to anywhere else. My liver looks great, my bloodwork has been "beautiful", according to my Dr, bones are clear. But we have to find another treatment since xeloda was a poop and didnt do its job for me. Im positive for BRCA1, and although my cancer is PR+, its only 1-4% so my onc says its technically triple negative. So there are no drugs like tamoxifen or herceptin i can have :/

Doc is on the ball. Im going down to Indiana University in Indianapolis this month to see a specialist and see if I am eligible for any clinical trials. Im also having both the cancerous node and the lung nodule biopsied this month, and its being sent to some place in Boston for some really heavy duty marker testing. Like the first time, my recurrence was caught fairly early and my oncologist is very optimistic.  We're looking for a targeted treatment first, but if that doesnt produce anything ill have to get another port put in and have IV chemo again. And speaking of "IV", with the metastasis I AM living with stage 4 cancer now. Im scared. At times my anxiety gets the best of me. Im 39. I have a little girl in kindergarten and another daughter who's 13. Sometimes I get tears in my eyes just from looking at them. I've kind of backed away from friends because I don't want to make them sad. (Although I am easing my way back into my social circle now!). But, on New year's eve I told myself to get back in the swing of things, reach out to my friends, get as much support behind me as I can, and fight this with all my might.

So,  after the long update, my main reason for posting is- I have to get my flu shot, im planning on going tomorrow. There is the regular flu shot, and also a high-dose flu shot. The high dose one is recommended for people ages 65 and over, because likelihood of having a weakened immune system and places people 65 and over at greater risk for illness. My onc recommended Iget a flu shot, but ddidn't mention the high dose one. I was looking online at my regular Walgreens to make sure they have the shot available, that's when I saw the high dose flu shot. Should I get the high dose since I have cancer? Im planning on calling my Dr tomorrow to see what she thinks, but im curious as to whether or not anyone else on here has been recommended by their doc to get the high dose one, even if they're under 65? Any input is greatly appreciated! !

Thank you & xoxo

Heatherbelle

Comments

  • GlowMore
    GlowMore Member Posts: 789 Member
    Options
    Hey Heatherbelle....

    Just really so very sorry to hear of the possible mets and having the monster raise it's head again.....but it does sound like you have a very good Oncologist and that you are proceeding with a good treatment plan.   Sending you love and prayers.... As for the flu shot ...would definitely call my Doctor and ask.....   sort of surprised that you didn't already get that flu shot back last Fall.  Would you mind telling us what your follow up schedule has been between 2010 and now?  Hugs to you.  Glo 

  • New Flower
    New Flower Member Posts: 4,294
    Options
    GlowMore said:

    Hey Heatherbelle....

    Just really so very sorry to hear of the possible mets and having the monster raise it's head again.....but it does sound like you have a very good Oncologist and that you are proceeding with a good treatment plan.   Sending you love and prayers.... As for the flu shot ...would definitely call my Doctor and ask.....   sort of surprised that you didn't already get that flu shot back last Fall.  Would you mind telling us what your follow up schedule has been between 2010 and now?  Hugs to you.  Glo 

    hi Heather

    Sorry for your progression. Xeloda did work for me for 8 months. I hope they can find aclinical trial for you, including oral treatment. Asfar as the shot, I think your oncologist is the best sourse for an answer.

    I wish you better days ahead and to stop by more often.

    Hugs

  • Dawne.Hope
    Dawne.Hope Member Posts: 823
    Options
    I don't know about the flu shot

    Heatherbelle - I remember you. 

    GRRRR on the recurrence.  I so hate damn cancer.  

    I don't know what to do regarding the flu shot but know that you are in my prayers.

     

    Love and hugs!

    DH

  • Heatherbelle
    Heatherbelle Member Posts: 1,226 Member
    Options
    GlowMore said:

    Hey Heatherbelle....

    Just really so very sorry to hear of the possible mets and having the monster raise it's head again.....but it does sound like you have a very good Oncologist and that you are proceeding with a good treatment plan.   Sending you love and prayers.... As for the flu shot ...would definitely call my Doctor and ask.....   sort of surprised that you didn't already get that flu shot back last Fall.  Would you mind telling us what your follow up schedule has been between 2010 and now?  Hugs to you.  Glo 

    Thank you Flo :) hugs back

    Thank you Flo :) hugs back atcha. I might have jumbled up my words in my first post, I'm quite known to do that these days!  I do have Mets to nodes on the opposite side of my first cancer, and possibly to my lung . I'm just hoping and praying that both time and modern medicine are on my side. As far as follow up between my first time and this one,  after the first 18 months of being clear it was just yearly checkups with my oncologist and breastfeeding surgeon. I got terrible neuropathy from chemo the first time around, it started getting worse and getting different, that's when I called my dr. But I wasn't on tamoxifen or anything like that, just had mastectomy on both sides and chemo for treatment and was cancer free after that. I was almost to the five year mark, too.

    thanks everyone for your input, I'll be calling my onc in the morning and getting my shot.  I know I should have gotten it months ago, but between my two girls and both of their schools, and all my mom duties that go along with them, my awesome chemo brain, and the emotional strain I've been under, getting my flu shot became one of those "dangit I forgot, I'll get one next time" kinda things. 

    Xoxo, 

    heatherbelle

  • camul
    camul Member Posts: 2,537
    Options

    I don't know about the flu shot

    Heatherbelle - I remember you. 

    GRRRR on the recurrence.  I so hate damn cancer.  

    I don't know what to do regarding the flu shot but know that you are in my prayers.

     

    Love and hugs!

    DH

    Hi Heather
    Hate that it has spread, but very happy that your Dr. is on top of it. Last year got the shot, have no idea which one but they asked me questions at the hosp pharm to be sure I was getting the right one.
    Glad to hear from you anytime. Just wish no one else had to get this damn disease.
    Hugs and Prayers.
    Carol
  • VickiSam
    VickiSam Member Posts: 9,079 Member
    Options
    camul said:

    Hi Heather
    Hate that it has spread, but very happy that your Dr. is on top of it. Last year got the shot, have no idea which one but they asked me questions at the hosp pharm to be sure I was getting the right one.
    Glad to hear from you anytime. Just wish no one else had to get this damn disease.
    Hugs and Prayers.
    Carol

    Sweet HeatherBelle =

    .. so sorry to hear about the recurrance of the beast ... and your health issues.  Please know that we are here for you!

    I wish and pray for better days for you.   hate hate hate that you are going thru this.

    Strength, Courage and HOPE for a Cure.

    Vicki Sam

  • aisling8
    aisling8 Member Posts: 1,627 Member
    Options
    VickiSam said:

    Sweet HeatherBelle =

    .. so sorry to hear about the recurrance of the beast ... and your health issues.  Please know that we are here for you!

    I wish and pray for better days for you.   hate hate hate that you are going thru this.

    Strength, Courage and HOPE for a Cure.

    Vicki Sam

    No answer for your question

    Just saying hello and sending love and support and some sunny California energy.

    xoxo

    Victoria

  • Double Whammy
    Double Whammy Member Posts: 2,832 Member
    Options
    aisling8 said:

    No answer for your question

    Just saying hello and sending love and support and some sunny California energy.

    xoxo

    Victoria

    Hi Heather

    Unfortunately, there are a few from the 2010 club who can tell you of their experiences with recurrence. And then there's me, just checking in and trying to return the support I got back in the day.  (I'm well).   Hoping for good results for you with your treatments.

    Hugs,

    Suzanne

  • carkris
    carkris Member Posts: 4,553 Member
    Options

    Hi Heather

    Unfortunately, there are a few from the 2010 club who can tell you of their experiences with recurrence. And then there's me, just checking in and trying to return the support I got back in the day.  (I'm well).   Hoping for good results for you with your treatments.

    Hugs,

    Suzanne

    during chemo i got the flu

    during chemo i got the flu shot but not the old person one. My mom who is old enough got very sick from the older person shot. Thinking of you HB hugs

  • RE
    RE Member Posts: 4,591 Member
    Options
    :-)

    Hi Heather, I have had you on my mind and heart...it sounds like you have a great doctor who is working hard to keep you around.  Stage IV is scary but one can live a very long time with good care, you may well hold your grandchildren some day!  I had my 3d dx in 07 my first in 98 and I have managed to keep going.  My second cancer was in my chest wall as well.  Keep us updated, glad to hear your lovely girls are doing well!

     

    Love ya!

     

    RE