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Friday, January 01, 2016

Welcome 2016!

It’s a new year.  Quite a few of my friends had more than their share of sadness in 2015 so I hope 2016 is a much better year for all of us.

Here’s a medical update: I finished up 28 rounds of chemoradiation on Dec. 30.  It was not the most pleasant experience I’ve ever had; in fact, my seat is quite sore. There is no way to describe the experience without being a little gross, but I’ll try not to be too graphic.  Imagine, if you can, that you have a severe sunburn  in and around your large intestine and rectum.  Now imagine that before it exits your body everything you eat is magically transformed into habanero peppers  boiled in molten lava and seasoned with fire ants. There you have it. It’s quite painful.  I’m pretty sure insurance won’t cover the cost of soundproofing the bathroom, but I think it should! Yet another complication, and one which caused the doctor to take me off chemo for a week or two, was mucositis-  nasty ulcers  that formed in my mouth and nose. I also had  more severe  tingling and numbness in my feet and hands but the ulcers were the doctor’s primary concern. She was worried they could spread to my throat making me unable to swallow and that I’d become dehydrated. So off came the pump. I was not sorry.  The pump went back on once the ulcers cleared up and I wore it for the final three days of radiation. The neuropathy  was more annoying than  truly painful- numb fingers make decorating a Christmas tree somewhat challenging J

I told my oncologist that I was pretty sure she and the radiation oncologist had consulted with the Marquis deSade  before coming up with that particular treatment plan.  She thought I was kidding. Little did she know!

Now we are waiting for insurance to approve another CT scan to see what effect, if any, the treatment has had. Once the CT scan is scheduled and done and the results are in I’ll meet again with both oncologists and the surgeon to see where we go from here. Needless to say, I’m hoping all that misery served a good purpose and that both the rectal and liver tumors have shrunk or disappeared.  Time (and the scan) will tell. Meanwhile I have almost a month with no daily treks to the clinic for a radiation treatment, no being tethered to a pump 24 hours a day five days a week.  The new sense of freedom has been wonderful for the past few days!

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