I haven’t been keeping up with my cancer updates. Sometimes I try to live as if I don’t have cancer by not thinking about it, or writing, or taking my medicine like I’m supposed to.
I know I wrote that my cancer has spread to my liver. Spreading to my liver seemed to make the doctor panic a little. He put me on Ibrance and Faslodex? Ibrance is a 125mg pill. Faslodex is the 2 shots in the hip thing. They are what I call “horse shots” because the needles are huge though I’ve never seen them - but I have felt them. I saw them through Chuck’s eyes. The first time I was going to get the shots I looked at him and he looked horrified. I decided when I saw "that look" on his face I wasn't going to look. I told him that and he said you don't want to see them because the needles are huge.
The first time I got the shots they hit a nerve in my left leg and I was in a great deal of pain for 2 days. I pretty much stayed in bed because my pain pills did nothing to help. The next time I got them - I’m not sure what happened but my right hip hurt for a month. Thankfully, it wasn’t like the pain from the first shot but I was super sore and I couldn’t touch my hip or sit certain ways.
The other issue with the Ibrance was my white blood cell count got really low and I got neutropenia, or low baby white blood cell count. That meant I could get sick really easily - and I did. I got so sick it was horrible. I’ve never been that sick. I lost my lunch every ½ hour starting at 8:30 at night until 4:30 a.m. I thought I was feeling a little better and decided to try taking a shower in the afternoon and got sick in the shower. Chuck called the oncologist’s office and they gave me a prescription for an anti nausea pill. I was able to get one down and felt a little better. The next day I had a doctor’s appointment and apparently I scared the lady I saw. She wanted me to get an MRI of my brain because of the migraine I had. I think I scared her because I looked so bad. I had lost about 10 lbs too. I don’t think I’ve looked that sick since I was diagnosed with cancer.
Getting so sick made me want to go off all the new medications. I told her this and I told her I wanted to stay off until my white count went back to normal and I no longer felt sick. I also told her I wanted to go off the shots because of all the extra pain from them. She said - before I had a chance - you want “quality of life.” Quality of Life was my original Oncologist's goal for me. That is my goal. I didn’t realize how forceful I must have come across because when I went back 2 weeks later she took me off the new shots completely and put me on a pill instead. I just wonder why they couldn’t have done that in the first place. She also wanted me back on Ibrance and said she would lower it to 100mg. I asked if she would please lower it to 75mg and see what happens with that. She agreed but said she wanted to ask Dr. Reynolds and make sure he was on board with it. She came back and told me he was ok with it. I was supposed to start taking it Monday before Christmas. I told Chuck I wasn’t going to start it until until after Christmas. Chuck asked if I wanted to go to St. Augustine to see the Christmas lights - so I'm putting off starting the medicines until the day after New Years. I wanted a break through the holidays.
After getting so sick I’ve gotten nauseous once a week and had to take the anti nausea medication. When I feel like that and take the meds I also have to go to bed. I don’t seem to be able to do anything else. Since I haven’t been taking the new medication I can’t blame that. I wonder if it’s because the cancer’s spread to my liver. I guess that could make me nauseous and super tired.
That's my update for now. I don't know how long I'll be on these new medications if I have issues with them again. You just don't understand "quality of life" until you feel bad and stay sick all the time.