- 9/26/12: (yes, that is tomorrow) 11am: Port (or portacath) placement via sedated surgery 3pm (echocardiogram of my heart to use as a baseline)
- 9/27/12: First Chemotherapy treatment. I will do one dose of AC (Adriamycin and Cytoxan) every 3 weeks (takes 4 hours) x 4 doses. So, I will have 12 weeks or three months of this chemotherapy. Apparently, I will feel like I have the flu, with a lot of fatique, with this treatment. I will most likely feel my worst around day 7 after treatment, with the day or so leading up to and following the treatment being pretty tough as well. The doctor said she can give me plenty of meds to help with nausea, but she cannot give me anything to help with the fatigue. During days 8-14 following the chemo treatment my immunity will be at its lowest. We are going to need to implement some really good routines at our house to prevent illness. This means that Luke will need to be doused in Purell every Tuesday and Thursday when he is picked up from school. We will also have to be careful about having people over. The doctor jokingly said, "I am going to help you beat this cancer, but I don't want you dying on me with a silly cold!" The doc also mentioned that I WILL lose my hair. It starts falling out around two weeks into the treatment.
- 9/28/12: Injection of Neulasta (prescription medicine used to reduce the risk of infection due to the strong chemotherapy I will be receiving, which lowers the number of infection-fighting white blood cells)
- Following the first three months of this strong chemotherapy, I will go through three months of chemo treatment using the drug, Taxol. I will have an injection weekly for 12 weeks (approximately one hour). Apparently, this treatment is not as hard on the body as the first treatment (AC).
- Then, I will have surgery, then radiation, and then "BAM" the cancer is gone. This is what we are praying and is actually how the doctor described the process. I said, "OK, let's do it!" We told her we had an appointment at MD Anderson on Monday. She told us they would recommend pretty much the same treatment, only in reversal. She said she was fine with that, but recommended the reversed way because she likes her patients to have the less harsh on the body treatment right before surgery. I will also be taking tamoxifen for 5 plus years daily.
Before we left, I had 5 vials of blood drawn and I was scheduled for an MRI Brain, MRI lumbar and echocardiogram. Is there a test or imaging study that I have not had in the past week? Going to all of these doctor's appointments has been like a full time job for the past week and a half. But, I am so thankful I have been able to be scheduled for all of these exams so swiftly. The oncologist said that I need to start chemotherapy as soon as possible due to the aggressive nature of my cancer and my age. We were so thankful to have the appointment with MD Anderson on Monday as a second opinion so that we could begin treatment as soon as possible. Stay tuned for another blog post about our MD Anderson appointment.