Two weeks ago, I finished round 6 of 4-6 rounds of Gem/Cis (as tolerated). I had a very rough round 5 that knocked my blood counts for a loop, esp platelets and hemoglobin...so I ended up with two units of packed red blood cells transfusions.
I took an extra week off between round 5 and 6, to see how well my counts might rebound before deciding to continue. They did rebound well enough to go ahead. My oncologist, however, reduced the percentage of dose by 25% so as to not have a repeat of round 5. Still, last Wednesday, my platelets were only 42....and my white blood cells were well under normal with neutrophils also very, very low.
Now, a week later, after having some breathing difficulties about 5-6 days ago, I had repeat blood labs and all the major things are in the normal or much better range. Platelets and WBC and neutrophils are all back into the normal range...low normal...but normal. Hemoglobin is at 9.2 ...which is anemic....but on the uptrend.
So, during my consult today with my local oncologist, it was decided that my port will be removed....and I'm scheduled for that surgery next Monday, the 15th. It was put in weird...kind of tilted sideways and always caused a problem ...and pain....to access. I am thrilled to get rid of it. It was also decided that I would not see my onc again for about a month....in early October...which will be about a month before I go to Rochester for my next 3 month scan.
I'm planning a vacation with my husband.....and will indulge one of my favorite hobbies, genealogy...and another one...hand holding with my hubby (hopefully while walking through some beautiful Michigan and Pennsylvania and Tennessee countryside.). Whatever the November scan shows...or any of the others to follow...I know I have done everything I could do (the adjuvant chemo....post surgery) to try to keep the cancer from returning. There won't be any looking back and saying, "I should have....."
On a personal note....my hair is almost gone on my scalp....esp on top...but new peach fuzz hair is already growing on top. My eyebrow hairs...I could count how many are left of the original ones with both hands and a couple fingers to spare. Seriously....3 hair on one side and 5 on the other. However, new little sprouts of eyebrow hairs started growing last week and are a little longer this week...and there are more than I can count with my fingers....at the inside tip of the eyebrows....and just today I noticed several new sprouts about mid eyebrow. My eyelashes...another story....most of them fell out....and no sign of any regrowth...unless what are left ARE regrowth...and just very short.
People talk about "chemo hair", the new growth that tends to be coarser and maybe even curly. The cancer cosmetologist at the cancer center today said that the short stuff on the top of my head looked like new growth to her....but it is not coarse...it is very downy and "fuzzy" like. Wouldn't you know....the same as the stuff I was born with.....the same hair that stood up and out every which direction. Sigh. Oh well....I will be happy with just hair if that is the case and be glad about it. I always wanted darker/thicker/and curly hair....but the new hair appears to be the med blonde color it was when I was born....same fine, thin hair. Thought I might get rewarded for all the chemo crap with at least getting some good hair back....but I guess any hair is "good" hair at this point.
Tonight at supper....I had on a ballcap with hair that is attached to the cap (very handy and fast). I've worn it off and on for the past month....and my little three year old grandson and I have made jokes about grammy's moving hair...as I lift the cap up and down. We call it "silly hair". Tonight at supper....I told him I had the silly hair on again....and I moved it up and down. He laughed at first...and then wanted me to take it off. He looked at me and very matter of factly said, "Grammy doesn't have hair." Well, I have a little...but no where near what he was used to seeing. There was a little nervous laughter at the table...but he and I just kept having our conversation. I'll show him the regrowing hair from time to time...so that he sees that it will come back. At three, he doesn't understand much, other than grammy was sick....and the doctors at the hospital took out what made her sick and now she is getting better. When I've told him this....as he's been in my lap, he takes a very long, serious look at my face...and into my eyes....appearing to try to decide for himself whether I better or not. But the more we do things together like we used to do....the more he will accept that things are now okay again.
I just hope and pray that they stay that way..okay!!!! . Meanwhile, I'm enjoying every moment with that little guy....my son and his wife, husband....that I can.
"Just for today, I can get through anything." I'm a cancer survivor, not a doctor. The opinions I state are my own, based on my personal experiences. As always, talk to your doctor about your concerns and treatment.