Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Herceptin #13 Update

Wow, it's been 2 weeks since I posted last!  I think about it a lot, I just don't like taking the time to do it!
Last week I had another MUGA scan (for heart function). My heart function was 65% before I started treatment (which is very good), and after starting Herceptin it went down to 51.  Then my onc. put me on Enalapril (a blood pressure med), and my heart function has increased to 56!  And I haven't had any side effects from the med.  I was worried about my bp dropping too low, but I am on a very low dose and am tolerating it well.
Other good news--my hemoglobin finally made it up to 12, which is the bottom of the normal range.  It hasn't been normal since last April.
We scheduled some upcoming tests--a CT scan and another MUGA on Feb. 21st (6 weeks), and an MRI and mammogram sometime in April.  The CT scan is for the colon cancer--to watch for a recurrence.  My onc. wants me to have them every 6 months for awhile.  He said because I'm so young, he wants to make sure if anything does show up again we catch it early.  He did say, though, that he thinks we did a pretty good job of fighting it so it shouldn't come back!
I do not need another colonoscopy for 2 years (3 years from my last one), and after this mammo and mri I won't need another one for a year.
Some side effects I still have are neuropathy (numbness) in my fingers and feet, and just tired and out of shape!  I am starting to work on building my strength and stamina. I have a lot of damage from the colon cancer radiation, and also issues that have to do with missing 18" of my colon!  These are annoyances that I will have to live with, although they may get better with time.  I am also praying that God will take these problems away and restore to me what cancer has taken.  I can be very persistent!  I also need to continue to stretch my left arm and shoulder, or it quickly stiffens up.  When I had my MUGA last week I had to have my left arm above my head for 10 minutes and that really hurt!  Stretching helps a lot, I guess I just have to keep doing it!
I am very pleased with how well my skin did with radiation.  I was expecting much worse! The scar area peeled, but it didn't hurt.  The whole area, including by the clavicle, is tan looking, and will probably always be that way.  I will need to protect it with sunscreen anytime it's exposed (like with tank tops and scoop neck tops) for the rest of my life.
Family update:  Shonna is still here on break.  She goes back to KC this weekend.  Alyssa and Jaren will be leaving on a mission trip next weekend (the 22nd).  Rachel and Ken are almost ready to submit all their paperwork to the country they are adopting from.  Hopefully they will get to go over sometime in March or April.  They have to wait for the country to contact them with the date.
Life is good!  God is better!! 
Love and blessings!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Tina, Love, so glad you posted again.
    You've been through a lot, but it sounds like overall things are going well. Keep the positive attitude... keep looking UP (to God, that is!).