Spoke too Soon

March 16, 2009

O Best Beloveds, despite that one dip and the good scans, my numbers have gone up to 2700 or so. Doxcell is apparently not working. That the tumor markers have doubled does not mean the amount of tumor has also doubled, but Dr. W. says we must consider this progressive disease.

So now what? All kinds of exciting things! First up, a serious CAT scan this week, to find a nice batch of tumor from which a biopsy can be taken next week. I think he said it would be great to just have a lymph node; otherwise, we are looking at six or seven (!!!) cores taken from the liver. Then two things: the biopsy will be analyzed to see if it’s estrogen positive or negative. If the former (if I understood this right; it was a lot of information all at once), he’s going to put me on these pills to make me even more sensitive to estrogen treatment, and from there back on Femara. This would all be very good; side effects from this are minimal to non-existent. If it’s the latter, then it’s back to chemo. But the biopsy is also going to have that molecular typing thing done to it, which is really cool. It basically tells exactly what kind of treatments the cancer will respond to, so further work won’t have that hit-and-miss quality, but will stand a better chance of being immediately effective. I would go on a chemo already known to have a strong chance of working.

In other words, there are all kinds of possibilities ahead, and so I’m doing my best to look at this as interesting and exciting, rather than discouraging. I’m not happily anticipating a liver biopsy (or six or seven) but there’s not much to be done about that. I’m sorry to give Doxcell up; it’s been my favorite chemo by far, though this last dose left me feeling more chemo-y (shakey, a little out of it) than I’ve felt in a long time. I also have my usual priorities, to wit, none of this gets to mess with Jazz Fest, thank you VERY much. But that’s not till the end of April, so there’s time to make it all work out.

So lots of interesting stuff, cutting edge medicine-wise, coming down the pike in the next couple of weeks. Let’s just think of it that way, okay?

But first, a cupcake,