Tuesday, July 1, 2008

What's Up With the Doc 18? - or Wasn't This Supposed To Be It?

6th chemo was today and was uneventful. Remember when I thought 6 was the most I'd get? I was all macho about how I was going to set a new record for number of cycles of Carbo/Taxol and the oncologist just laughed at me. He said, "We only limit to 4-6 for lung cancer. I published a paper on giving that combination to elderly patients for ovarian cancer and we gave many, many, many cycles to an octagenarian who tolerated it just fine. If you want to beat her, you've got a real marathon ahead of you." So I said, "Fine. We'll just hope that the stupid tumor cooperates."

Then we talked about what happens when we stop the Carbo/Taxol. Sloan-Kettering suggested continuing the Avastin and adding Tarceva. Unfortunately, that's not being done off protocol and I'm pretty sure my insurance will refuse to pay for both and both are disgustingly expensive. If I stay on the chemo until tumor progression it's not an issue because we'd stop the Avastin anyway, but if I stop because I've reached tolerance I'll have to ramp up the appeals process.

A man down the row of chairs from me got hauled out on a stretcher because of an allergic reaction today. Apparently, it caused quite a stir among the other patients but I was so dopey I really barely noticed the stretcher rolling out.

Friends are coming into town tomorrow and taking us out to my favorite restaurant. I work tomorrow but then I'm off for four days. Work Monday and then leave for NM on Tuesday. Clark Haskins is doing my count on Wednesday - I am so excited to see him! It's been over ten years. Next scan is July 15th and, if the tumor is still shrinking, cycle #7 on July 22nd.

This last cycle was completely uneventful and I feel great. My oncologist is loading me up with just in case antibiotics to take to NM with me. I'll see my sister, Bruce, my mother, brother, sister-in-law, best childhood friend and Emma while in NM, not to mention eating green chiles with every single meal. We're all going to the Santa Fe Opera together on Friday evening after dinner in Santa Fe and then Robert and I will spend Friday night and Saturday with my childhood friend in Los Alamos. NM is my heart's home and I haven't been there for 7 years so there is much happy anticipation.

If all goes well, you probably won't hear from me until it's time to recap the NM trip, followed closely by scan results. Keep all appendages crossed.

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