Tuesday 3 April 2012

Some more good news!

My tumour has continued to shrink by a further 29.15%!  It now measures 2.4 x 2.4 cm - almost half (53%) of its original area.

I was so happy when the Oncologist told me, I almost cried. Suffice to say that he's really pleased with my progress and described the reduction after two sessions as 'fantastic'.

We also talked about the problems that I'm having with my left arm. He confirmed that it was caused by vein inflammation from one of the drugs but also said that I only have that drug for treatments 1-3, so tomorrow will be my last time. (And I'll make sure that I'm injected in my right arm)

After that, the drug combination - and therefore symptom cycle - changes. The revised drugs apparently cause less internal symptoms and more external ones, that is, it will start to affect my eyelashes and nails as well as my hair.

Following chemotherapy will be surgery. Because the tumour is so high on the pectoral muscle and close to the rib cage, they need to shrink it as much as possible because the 'margins' within which to successfully remove the tumour are small. It will also be the surgeon's decision as to whether they do a mastectomy or lumpectomy. Obviously I'm hoping for the latter!

I'm seeing the surgeon at The Royal Marsden on 4th May and the operation normally take places 4-5 weeks after the last chemo session, before the tumour can grow again. Working this out, that would mean an op at the beginning of July, just after my birthday - so at least we can give the little f*cker a good send off! ;-)

Lastly, there will be radiotherapy - during August, I assume - and then, fingers crossed, a nice holiday and a good rest.

So, that's that. In other news, Mr P. and I both enjoyed free aromatherapy massages at the Maggie's Centre today and I've booked onto a 'Look good, feel good' workshop next week. I'm rather hoping this might teach me to put on false eyelashes (should I need them), without looking like a panto dame, and apparently they give you a free bag of make-up.

This afternoon, Mr P. has also shaved my head. My hair had got so thin and wispy it just looked a state but now it looks a lot neater. Because it was looking so awful, I really wasn't sorry to see the hair go - it was actually quite a relief.

All of which means that, by this time tomorrow, we'll be half way through the chemo. I'm almost excited to see who we encounter on the ward this week. They'll have to go some to beat the flatulent lady dwarf from last time, but bring it on!


  1. That's wonderful news! So pleased for you xxxxx

  2. Hi Kate and Mr. P
    We are all thinking of you here at work. We are missing you and your tales of stuffed moles for your thespian antics. We read your blog regularly and you are on our minds every day.
    Don't think that we have forgotten about you. Far from it. When we read your blog we are all inspired to cheer you on. It is as though you are running a marathon and we are lining the route to cheer you on. You can't always see us because you are so focused on getting to the finishing line, but trust me, we are there.
    A very close relative of mine has worn a wig for the past 60 years as she lost her hair when she was a child. Wear it with pride. I think you look fantastic, as does everyone else here.
    Take care and hang on in there :-)
    Julie HK

  3. Aww, thank you Julie. I read your message while I was having my treatment today and it brought a little tear to my eye. K xx