So much has changed since last Tuesday. So much it feels like it’s been weeks since we got the bad news.

I’d expected to get about another year on Tarceva. Time I’d begun to count on has been snatched away. It’s devastating. We’ve now been through this a few times but it doesn’t get much easier. Lots of tears. More uncertainty. Another crossroads.

Since getting the news, I’ve been either working late or exhausted or both. No opportunity to blog. And there have been the new pains. Because of severe back pains several days in a row, I had MRI of my spine last Saturday. But, the results weren’t definitive. That can happen with most of these tests from time to time.

Then over the weekend I started getting more intense chest pains. By Monday morning it was constant and I was referred to the ER. I doubted it could be a heart issue, but I have been on a lot of different drugs with various side effects. There was also pulmonary emboli to rule out. For this, I had another chest CT. No PE. But, there is further noticeable disease progression – and in just two weeks. Not good – but I guess not entirely unexpected. So it’s pain management for now. And wait. The day at the ER was exhausting and aggravating. It was the entire day! I felt ignored and forgotten much of the time. Ken would have come in an instant. But, I insisted he get through his meetings. We were in phone contact as much as possible which helped. But, I learned my lesson. I won’t go it alone again. 

Dr B is recommending my next line of treatment be Taxotere along with another trial drug. It doesn’t have a catchy name yet – just a designation of letters and numbers. To qualify, I have to wait 3 weeks from the time I stopped taking Tarceva. Three weeks without treatment. Three weeks allowing the cancer to progress. The hope is adding the trial drug will squeeze more success out of the treatment than without it.

To make chemo easier I will get a port implanted. This will make treatments, blood draws, and other tests (with IV contrast) much easier. I know it’s the right thing and I am ready for it. But it doesn’t mean I am looking forward to having a foreign object in my chest with a tube resting inside a major artery. The procedure will be done next week. Then, if all goes well, chemo starts on the 17th.

In the meantime, I had a bone scan. It was a routine follow-up to the trial I’d been on. Dr B thinks it might also give some insight into my chest pains. We’ll know tomorrow.

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