March 27, 2014

3 Month Health Update

It's been almost three months since my lung cancer journey started, when my world got turned upside down.  Despite feeling quite well and looking "normal", we spent the last few weeks researching my second line therapy options just in case the first follow up doesn't go well.  We looked into clinical trials. I became more accepting of the possibility of chemotherapy. I slowly started to purge the house in case we needed to move.  I wanted to be prepared for plan B... Whatever that may be.  

Last week, I had my follow up CT scan (chest, abdomen and head). I thought I could ignore the anxiety that comes after every follow up scan but no.  I think it will always affect me.  Instead, I decided to lose myself in the Divergent book series, although not sure if that was helpful to my mood; those who have read the trilogy will understand why.  I was too busy ranting about the ending to S to pay much attention to my scanxiety... So maybe it did help. 

Today, we met with my oncologist for the CT scan results. Phew. Good news! The largest tumour in the lower lobe of my left lung has shrunk by over 50%!!! Some of the smaller nodules elsewhere in/around my lung are now only 2-4mm or less. Some have even completely resolved! The thickening in the pleura has decreased substantially.  In addition, no new lesions were found... Other organs and brain still intact :). We were ecstatic to hear that Iressa and the changes we had made to diet, lifestyle and attitude was working.  A huge burden was lifted off our chests.  We couldn't wipe the smiles off our faces :).  On top of that, the clinical trial drug I was interested in, which I thought wasn't available in Canada yet, will be coming to our cancer centre and run by my oncologist! Although it's too early for me to decide, Dr. B even asked if I would be interested in speaking to a lung cancer group later this year. Wow, what a difference three months makes. S and I celebrated with a yummy vegetarian lunch and a peaceful stroll through our favourite park under gently falling snow.  

So my next follow up with the CT scan and oncologist is in two months.  In the meantime, I will continue with Iressa, continue imagining my tumours shrinking, continue enjoying my new life.  Another bonus, Iressa's first few side effects of diarrhea, acne, rash and dry skin have largely subsided.  Instead, I am now dealing with darker and longer eyelashes... Which is fantastic! Another late side effect is some hair thinning, which has not been an issue for me yet since I have a good mane of hair.  I'm just going to enjoy those lashes:).  Hope your day was awesome too!