Brief, but critical blog update...went to see Dr. McCourt today. We had to wait a bit, but it was totally worth it!
She said that the CT scan they did last week showed that the fluid in my abdomen has decreased, the lesions that they have been watching are stable and NOT large enough for me to qualify for the clinical trial drug that I was supposed to start today. She also said that my CA 125 level has DROPPED from 245 to 100! And that was when I was NOT getting any chemo! I haven't had chemo since May 17th.
She doesn't know what to recommend for chemo for me now. She doesn't want me back on the Avastin due to the high risk for bowel problems (perforation)...and the fact that it appears I've already had a GI bleed of some sort---which led to the last trip to the ER, which in turn, started this whole "cancer-is-spreading-even-though- you-are-on-chemo-scare." She doesn't understand why I'm still having the diarrhea problems and the bowel pain. She questions if it's due to adhesions, which I have questioned myself. So, she's wondering if this whole episode of rising CA125 levels, fluid in the abdomen, etc., is due to inflammation from whatever is going on with my bowels, and nothing to do with cancer spreading in the abdomen.
I told her I liked that line of thinking and we agreed that I will contact my GI and get in to see her ASAP.
She also recommended an eight week "holiday" where I don't get chemo and then we do another CT scan and bloodwork and see what happens. If the lesions grow then at worst I qualify for the clinical trial and she's sure there will still be a space for me. If the lesions don't grow, then maybe I continue my "holiday" and we just go month-to-month to see what happens. If the lesions grow, but not enough for the trial...we decide what chemo I will go on.
Whatever happens in the future, I HAVE THE SUMMER OFF FROM CHEMO! I plan to make the most of this "vacation"...I have a lot I need to do on the bathroom project and we have lots of plans for RVing this summer.
I just have to watch for any of my tell-tale symptoms...fatigue, bloating, pain. Piece of cake.
I am still trying to process all this new information. I have gone from being bummed about being told that the cancer was growing despite the chemo....to this...and it may sound strange, but I don't feel quite as happy about it as one would imagine. I know Sandy is ecstatic and I should be too....but I'm not there...yet. I would say right now that I'm "cautiously optimistic." I think that given time to process and understand more I will be appropriately ecstatic. It didn't help my mood today that physically I felt ill and mentally my head was 'fuzzy." As the chemo continues to get out of my system, these physical and mental feelings will diminish.
We decided to celebrate by eating out at Olive Garden...which will make some of this blog's readers cringe...but it was a good meal. Then we went to F W Webb in Waterford and spent big bucks picking out great faucets for the shower and vanity and all the accessories--towel bars, grab bar, hooks, etc. I LOVE the things we (I) chose. Sandy has the good sense to throw in a comment here and there and then stand back and let me decide. What the hell, I'm paying for the whole thing! Anyway, that bath is going to look MAHVELOUS!
I said brief update, but now I'm rattling on...so I'll end with...