Sunday, January 23, 2011

Another Day, Another Treatment Plan

Today is Sunday, sunny but very cold; temperatures going down to the single digits tonight.  This morning Thierry said he was sick of winter.  I reminded him that it is one-third over.  So for those of you who are suffering the winter blahs, keep that thought in mind.

I received a call on Friday that my new treatment has been approved by the health insurance provider.  I will be getting a brand new, just on the market a few months, drug called Halaven.  It is so new that none of the nurses I have spoken with at the infusion center have administered it, and they don’t have a supply at the hospital pharmacy.  They do expect to have it by Thursday so I can begin treatment.  Also because of its newness, no one knows what the side effects really are.  In looking on line, it appears they fall in line with the rest; hair loss, fatigue, nausea.

The treatments will be administered two weeks on, two week off.  Apparently it is an injection given intravenously (as opposed to a slow drip).  This is a good thing as it means my time at the infusion center will be greatly reduced.  Then it will be about settling in to the new normal.

I have to say the response from my new doctor has been terrific.  She did explore trials to see if I could get into a Parp study.  Unfortunately, the only study combines a Parp with carboplatin – which I developed an allergy to.  Although they say some people can be desensitized to the drug, they refused to include me in the study.  I have decided it is time to get a second opinion, and have selected a doctor at Penn to contact.  We’ll see where it goes.

This is the first time I have not read my test results.  I really don’t want to know what they say.  I remember when Mike’s mother was going through treatment for lung cancer.  There were a lot of questions I don’t think she asked.  I thought then that I would want to know everything.  And, up until know, I stayed on top of everything.  I am not exactly sure what changed.  I guess it’s about knowing what the outcomes ultimately are, and trying to maintain hope that we will beat the odds. I can’t focus on living, if I am focused on dying. 

So, I’ll focus on exploring options for living – and trying to live each day the best that I can. 

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