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Another Kick in the Balls

Doc_Hawk's picture
Posts: 685
Joined: Jan 2012

No typo in the subject title. I got my CEA today and it jumped again for 613 to 937. We are keeping in mind that this is after only one treatment of Zaltrap, the problems I've been having lately and accounting for dead cancer cells. I've also been pretty concerned about the severe and increasingly painful edema I've had in my left ankle since the surgery to remove the appendix and gall bladder. I'm getting an ultrasound tomorrow to see if this is a blood clot. I was rx'd warfarin for the clots in my lung when I had pneumonia, but there's been a big hassle with my insurance company when I tried to refill that's finally been resolved. This could be why there may be a clot now. Even with all of this in mind, I'm still pretty down right, probably the lowest I've been in 2 1/2 years.

About the only good news is that my magnesium level came up to 1.4 (with lo baseline being 1.8) and my onc only wants infusions once a week until I see him again.

joemetz's picture
Posts: 493
Joined: Nov 2011


man i read your post, and felt like... why am I such a jerk for posting my minor problems. You're always such a big help to me and to everyone here.

when I was a kick, i cringed whenever someone got kicked in the balls... when I watch Funniest Home Videos...and when that happens to someone.... I jump and go "oh crap i hate that" and it gives me the chills and I absolutely HATE when something happens.

Well, I'm cringing for you now brother!
keep your head up and keep up the fight.

find something you enjoy the most today, and take some time to soak it in.
sit back, relax and tell that cancer to get the eff out of your body!

hugs to you my man.


Lovekitties's picture
Posts: 3348
Joined: Jan 2010

Dear Ray,

We are gonna have to get you out of there and off to some place where the air agrees with you better! Maybe the altitude is the problem!

The CEA is worrisome for sure, but let's pray that with more of the new stuff and moving further from the surgery you had that it will finally move in the right direction soon. Has there been a recent scan to help determine how things stand?

So many cancer patients have insurance difficulties...it is just a crime. Perhaps we should lobby for full coverage, from the pharmacuticals, for whatever is deemed medically necessary. My sis is in a catch 22 with hers which is a limited benefit plan. Short version is they won't pay for chemo, but the onc's office and local hospital have a foundation which she qualified for so she will get treatments, doc visitis and labs free.

I know every day must be a struggle to keep up your spirits, but know that all here are in your corner and sending you extra hugs, prayers and love to keep you afloat until things improve on the test results front.

Here are the ones from me....hugs, prayers and love.

Marie who loves kitties (aka to you Miss Kitty)

JayhawkDan's picture
Posts: 206
Joined: Apr 2012

...coming to you from Kansas. Good news and better health HAS to be around the corner for you, my friend. You've sure had your share of the other. Hang in there! Dan

pete43lost_at_sea's picture
Posts: 3908
Joined: Nov 2010

hi ray,

all i can suggest is some cream might remove the pain and put a smile on your dial, it will get your mind off cancer as well, something i make a priority between therapies.
I am trying to make a little humour above, trying to be subtle, so my reply does not get flagged.

i am really trying to smell the roses, all the german ones at least.

the cea rise is bad, but feeling down for an extended period kind of robs you of the joy of living, so effectively the dam cancer wins possibly by killing us earlier than we want, but also by robbing us of peace of mind and quality of life right now.

each day is supposed to get better and better, if its not then somethings amiss.

what keeps me so dam positive and happy is all the support i have around me, now i make a huge effort to get friends. why last night i asked an entire yoga class out for dinner over the instructors microphone, out of 40 stunning girls one said yes so i have some dinner company and conversation in a very small boring german town.

if my funny story makes you smile than i have achieved my purpose, the reality of the cancer in our lives is so personal. if we were on the titanic i'd be next to the band enjoying the music and trying to learn to dance with some stunner. i think we are effectively all on the titanic, some of get life boats, some don't. i hope we all do.

tomorrow can be a brighter happier day regardless of the cancer, we can only live one day at a time, i hope tomorrow is the best day of my life. and that each successive one gets better than the last.


wolfen's picture
Posts: 1326
Joined: Apr 2009

Sending you BIG HUGS. I know what "down" feels like, for sure. But, just take a look at "Cancer Killer" and remember, that's YOU in there.



Maxiecat's picture
Posts: 544
Joined: Jul 2012

I am so sorry that you are in such a low place right now. I hope this rising CEA can be sorted out. ((((hugs)))


annalexandria's picture
Posts: 2573
Joined: Oct 2011

that's such a big jump. Several studies out there show a sudden large uptick in CEA after starting chemo is correlated with better outcomes. I'm really hoping that will be the case for you. You've been through more than enough. Will they scan you again pretty soon to see how things are going? Hugs and strength coming your way~Ann Alexandria

Cathleen Mary
Posts: 827
Joined: May 2011

I am hoping the same thing Ann is hoping. What an awful ride you have had these last months. Hang In. Know we are all rooting for you.

Cathleen Mary

k44454445's picture
Posts: 494
Joined: Jul 2012

i am wishing better times for you! wow. you have been thru alot & really deserve a break. you are a very strong guy so i know it will get better for you. know that there are alot of us backing you & will hold you up thru this rough time.

Posts: 753
Joined: Apr 2011

You are due for a break....you are in my prayers. I hate that you are at such a low. Hope this is a very short-lasting.

Annabelle41415's picture
Posts: 6547
Joined: Feb 2009

So sorry to hear of the rise but not surprising. Also sorry about the other problems you are having. It's hard to be treating a disease and creating new problems. I'm hoping that you feel better soon.


fatbob2010's picture
Posts: 467
Joined: May 2012


The depression concerns me the most. I think that depression untreated robs us of the precious moments that we deserve. Big ((HUGS)) of healing and comfort.


P.S. The CEA change is troublesome. Confident that it will reverse as treatment continues.

thingy45's picture
Posts: 633
Joined: Apr 2011

Dear Doc (Ray)

Enough is enough, you have been punched, probed ,cut, kicked, and everything else under the sun.
Time to make a stand ENOUGH. Now it is time for good news and feeling better.
One thing always leads to another so everyday feeling a little better is called for right now. I have ordered it specially for you.
I send you over the air waves(if I can get that high it is snowing here right now) Happy thoughts and healing lights and painfree is coming your way.
I so wish I can wave my magic wand.
Hang in there, b etter days must be on the horizon.


Doc_Hawk's picture
Posts: 685
Joined: Jan 2012

The support has helped out a lot. My mood is better than it was Tuesday, but that nagging worm of concern is still crawling around. I'm trying to get an auth from the insurance company for a PET scan this month so we can see what's going on. Currently I'm not due for one until February, but with this stuff, two months can literally mean life or death and I say it's a great day to be alive, not it's a good day to die.

Posts: 7
Joined: Feb 2012


How was your first treatment with Zaltrap? My hubby starts it tomorrow. A little nervous.


LivinginNH's picture
Posts: 1458
Joined: Apr 2010

I'm in a low point too, so we both need to work extra hard to get ourselves out of our slump. For instance, I went for a chilly walk around the neighborhood to look at the shining Christmas lights. Then I brought a bottle of wine over to a new neighbor and gave out hugs to my elderly neighbor across the street just because she looked so darn cute wrapped up in mittens and a fluffy down coat. I also had a laugh today at work when I accidentally dumped an entire box of rubber bands on top of my friend's head spilling hundreds all over her and the floor. We got a few smirks from our coworkers when she loudly announced "you just dumped an entire box of rubbers on me!". It's this type of stuff that brings my sadness meter up a couple of ticks. I have to allow myself to smile again and enjoy the humor around me. Maybe you can look for amusing things in your travels and just get absorbed in that brief feeling of happiness, then maybe your meter will tick up a few notches too. ;)

Hugs ((())))

Doc_Hawk's picture
Posts: 685
Joined: Jan 2012

You have every right to be in a slump right now. I've been sending prayers and hugs your way every day.


Doc_Hawk's picture
Posts: 685
Joined: Jan 2012

It seems like every off week brings along something new. This time it's laryngitis (I told my mom that I'm turning into a pony because I'm a little hoarse.) That came on yesterday and when I got up this morning, I started getting violently ill. My onc wanted me to come in today and they found that my white blood cell count has crashed, but not enough to go into the hospital. I do need to get in injections every day this week, though. I've also got yeast in my throat, so now it's swallow the miracle mouthwash (ugh!) and there's a wheeze in my lungs, so I have to protect against another onset of pneumonia. I told the nurse that there's no way I'm going into the hospital until after I see The Hobbit on Friday. I've been waiting to see that movie since I was 10 years old.

barbebarb's picture
Posts: 464
Joined: Oct 2011

Hey Doc
Hope this finds you feeling a little better. It's hard to keep our spirits going when we are hit with continue health challenges. You are always helpful here to all!
One day and hour at a time and I know you will see that movie and feel better.
Off to a pet scan here....
Hugs to you and energy for healing.

Posts: 154
Joined: Oct 2012

Doc, so sorry.....

Have been on the swish-n-swallow mouthwash myself. Ugh is right.

Hope your injections do what they are supposed to do.

Enjoy The Hobbit! I have a new friend who is really into that. I didnt even know what a Hobbit was until she explained it to me.

Got my Christmas card and poem yesterday. Thank you so much. Great pic and Lulu is a beauty. The poem really puts a new spin on Santa Clause, I loved it!!

Really hope the docs can get you lined out....

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