Tuesday, April 14, 2009

4/14 Update

Today was a LOOOONG one but good:) I had my chest x-ray and CT scan this morning... nothing too exciting and I survived!! The CT scan makes you feel like you are peeing your pants when the contrast is injected LOL I should be able to call the oncologist's nurse tomorrow morning and get the results from those. Pray for clear and pretty:)

Then I had the fun experience of going to DHS and got a run around regarding Medicaid eligibility under the new Arkansas law that covers women diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer regardless of income (basically picks up the part that isn't covered by insurance). They told me that I had to go to the Health Dept-sounded crazy to me but they refused to talk to me so I went. Health Dept of course laughed and said, "WHY do they keep sending ya'll here?!?!" but luckily they were nice enough to give me the number to Breast Care which is the program that covers breast and cervical cancer. I should hear back in 3-5 days if I get approved. Just thought I'd throw that out there as an FYI to anyone who may have breast or cervical cancer.

I had my 2nd opinion appt with Dr. Smith at Highlands Oncology and I'm SOOOO glad I went!!! He reassured me that Dr. Hightower is DEFINITELY the guy that needs to do my surgery and that if it were his wife in my shoes, he'd send her to Dr. Hightower. He said I could forgo surgery and just do radiation and chemo but also said he completely understands my desire to just get it all out to avoid future problems, and agrees with Dr. Hightower's gameplan. He said it would probably be best to go ahead and have some radiation after the surgery as it decreases the chance of recurrence in half!! I'm there-sign me up! I want this junk out and I am not letting it back in!!! He said it would most likely be 5 days a week for 5 weeks but that they would determine all of that after they see what is found in my surgery.

The only point he disagreed with Dr. Hightower on was the hormone replacement therapy. He agreed with me that there is a need for it and no reason to be miserable when there is something out there that can help ease the menopause symptoms that I'll immediately face after surgery. He said especially at my age when my body would normally be producing hormones on its own. So I have an appt with the GYN LPN that originally found my cancer on the 21st to discuss the various options on that. In regards to HRT increasing the chances of breast cancer, its less than 2% and pretty much if you are going to get breast cancer, you'll get it regardless of whether you do HRT or not. High five to him on that one!!

He gave us a more detailed explanation as to why Dr. Hightower would want to stop surgery if he were to find that the cancer had spread further than my cervix once he opens me up. He said that they need as big of a target to pinpoint for radiation so leaving everything in there gives them a nice, big area to hit and then they can go in after radiation and do the hysterectomy-kinda seems counter-productive but in the end it works the best and they have the best results. Hearing it from two experts made me feel better about it so I'm game on that.

He did say that I DEFINITELY need to have a PET scan. Basically a CT scan highlights any tumors, while a PET scan will highlight actual cancer cells so while the cancer cells might not have grown a tumor yet, they will still show up. He said he always likes to have that information before treatment so he knows exactly what he is dealing with-which is what I've wondered all along-why wait til you have me opened up to determine where all the cancer is?!?! So he ordered a PET scan and his office will be calling in the next day or so to schedule it. That will be done at their Fayetteville office. He said if nothing else, it will give everyone a peace of mind before heading into surgery.

I REALLLLLLY liked him!! He stayed in the room until we were absolutely positive we had no more questions (asked like 10 times before he left-YAY). He explained the whole radiation process and what treatments they do for cervical cancer, which I can have done in the Bentonville office. And he answered every single question we had. He is really confident that the cancer will be confined to my cervix and it'll be gone with surgery and a little radiation. I'm definitely feeling more confident about the surgery and Dr. Hightower after today.


Tomorrow (15th)-call Highlands Oncology to get x-ray and CT results. Have a beautiful class at Fellowship and then get chica's hair cut (she is looking pretty ragged!!!).

Hopefully have PET scan on Thursday or Friday.

Tuesday (21st) is my GYN LPN appt re: HRT and then my pre-op appt at WRMC.

Wednesday (22nd)-bible study

Thursday (23rd)-Bella's doctor appts (ENT post-op follow up and new allergy doc)

FUN FUN FUN FUN weekend-pray for awesome kite flying weather!!! I'm determined to take my chica to fly a kite before my surgery:) She is soooo enthralled with kites lately yet never actually flown one.

Monday (27th)-the troops start arriving and I get to do "Bowel Prep".... yep should be ooodles of fun!!!
Tuesday (28th)-surgery, have to be at WRMC at 5am (EEEEEEK) and surgery is at 7:30am, approx 3 hours
Wednesday (29th)-hospital, my bestest friend in the whole world arrives to kick my booty outta that bed!!!

Hunter had his 4mo check up today. Daddy got his first experience of baby shots:( He did awesome though (Daddy... baby just cried a bit). Hunter is 13lbs 4oz (25%) and 24.5 inches (40%). YAY for Chubs!!!! She said he is doing great... gotta do some more tummy time but otherwise looks awesome:)

1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much for the update, Danielle! You have an amazing attitude--and that includes being able to say "this sucks!" sometimes. (: Praying for you often!