Saturday, October 15, 2011

News...

they say that no news is usually good news... the theory behind that being that if it was bad news the person involved would need support... so if it slips their mind then it must not be bad, right? *i am making that loud incorrect buzzer sound now* i went in for my follow up appt yesterday with the onc surgeon dr b...

on the 5th i underwent surgery to resect the initial tumor area as well as snlb.  To perform a sentinel lymph node biopsy, the physician performs a lymphoscintigraphy, wherein a low-activity radioactive substance is injected near the tumor. (thanks again wikipedia).  that dye settles into the sentinel lymphs so the surgeon knows which lymphs to remove & biopsy.  the dye settled in nodes under both my underarms.  dr b said he took 3 from one side, and 4 from the other side... but was unclear on which side was which number.  he said they found micro mets (small metastasis) on the left side.  i am to speak with my onc (dr s) about this next week then return to dr b the following day.

at first dr b was saying it is micro mets so we can wait & see what happens... until i started asking questions about increased risk of breast cancer.  that is when he heard my family history of the disease.  so he started saying to talk with my onc... ask her about genetic testing to see if i carry the gene.  i don't think my insurance will cover that.  but he also wants me to ask dr s if we should perform a complete axillary dissection (remove all nodes left side) for testing to see if there is any more melanoma... or systemic treatment such as interferon or other chemo... he even went as far as to talk about a profalactic mastectomy if i have the gene because of the family history and the melanoma mets.

as my hubby likes to say... that confused me as much as a baby in a titty bar.  how can you go from a wait & see approach to the drastic profalactic mastectomy? does my family history really say that much? or like my brother pointed out- my family worked in an industry that increased their odds of cancer... since most were women it seemed logical it was breast cancer.  i don't know, but will be asking dr s. 

when i broke the news to froggie she reminded me there are tons of great trials out there.  i will be looking into everything this weekend... i meet with dr s on thursday, so i have time to research.  i just wish i had been clear headed enough to get my path report... but i wasn't.  i will ask for that on monday.  in the meantime i will use the details i do know to see what i might qualify for.  besides, since i had already had surgery in that area it is possible the lymph channels (kinda like roadways or paths) were changed... that means that the micro mets that was found might not even be the area the initial channel went to.  i know, i know... i am gonna drive myself crazy... but finally some good news- i am already there...

i am sure i will be writing more soon... but for now i dont know what else to say... i think mets, no matter the size, means i just advanced past stage 2 direct to stage 3...

1 comment:

  1. Yep sweety, stage 3 it is. I'm a 3b. Doesn't mean anything other than they found some in your lymph nodes. But whether you're a, b, or c depends on a bunch of technical stuff like the size, the depth, whether it was ulcerated, etc. Your Onc can tell you.
    I have my 6 month PET scan and a brain MRI coming up in 2 weeks and I'm starting to get a little scanxiety.
    You'll be ok... you're in the middle of it right now, but you're strong and we are all here to support each other. :)

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