Just another cancer blog

Month: July 2015

….And here we go . . .

After just posting the other day, here I am again. Still coughing- which I understand can last awhile- but will take my last antibiotic on Tuesday and will start the targeted chemo on Wednesday. Blood tests every two weeks the first month, then once a month and another Pet scan in three months. I have to admit to a little more anxiety than before. I know this is a “wonder drug” and there is even another one in the wings – but the world is filled with uncertainty and this isn’t helping. Keep me in your thoughts.

July 22 – update

Some of you know we had been planning to go to our nephew’s wedding in Seattle last weekend – and I saw a number of responses to my Saturday post- that was the day. Well, it’s been a difficult time again. On the 8th the oncologist cleared me to go but by the 12th I was feeling horrible. My primary care doctor was able to get me in on Monday and I was diagnosed with pneumonia again. However, not as severe as in January, and with a healthy dose of antibiotics and a super strong cough syrup I was cleared to go . . . on Tuesday I realized I would “make it” and off we went on Wednesday morning. How wonderful it was to see everyone – it has been a long time. The wedding was beautiful-on the beach in front of their home – tables, lounge areas and dance floor set up on various terraces of their home – all with a view of Puget Sound. We were able to do a little sight seeing as well . We shared an apartment with Jim’s sister and her husband -lots of visiting. It was wonderful. On Monday after we returned I sort of crashed. I am sure the excitement helped keep me going and once I was home I was exhausted. Have to continue my antibiotics . . . and that brings me to the update of my care. We do not know yet if the drug company will pick up the copay for my therapy. I can’t begin to take it until I am off antibiotics – so I am back “on hold.” Right now, I think I need a couple more days of rest before I even think of getting anything done. I am disappointed about that – but SO glad we were able to make the trip.

Where do we go from here?

Well, I’ve gotten my Pet scan results.  “Cancer has not left the building.”  Actually, on a positive note, it has not moved beyond the left lung and the one suspicous lymph node  between my lungs is “less suspicious.”  No signs of disease anywhere else . . .  great, but then again lung cancer is not one of the nice ones.  I spoke with the doctor about “the plan.”  First of all, I will be able to attend a wedding I have been looking forward to.  My cough is slightly worse and I have gotten a prescription and hopefully that will be okay.  The doctor is having his pharmacy and business office hash out what may be the cost of treatment . . .  the going rate is $16,000  a month without insurance.  Thank goodness for catastrophic coverage – or at least, I hope so.  The targeted therapy may not be quite so harsh as infused chemo and I get to keep my curly chemo locks.  This may be more info than you care to hear . . .I am not pressing the “sympathy” button . . . but every cancer patient is having to face costs and those of us with insurance are the fortunate ones.  Just imagine what this is like for a huge number of people without insurance and emotional support.  Imagine the choices that had to be made before catastophic coverage.   Anyway, I am feeling okay at the moment.  Have had some up and down days-it’s unnerving to have to wait for answers – but as usual, now that I know that there is a plan,  I feel considerably calmer.  My general health is still good so I should be able to manage this as well.  Keep me in your thoughts.