Saturday, February 9, 2013

My Body, My Science Project

First, I must apologize for taking so long to give follow up information.....but, here we go...

August 15, 2012
This is the day that I went back for another internal ultrasound (or as I liked to call it a "date with an ultrasound wand") and as an extra bit of fun, I got to have a biopsy to make sure that none of my "accessories" were leaning to/ or were cancer.

The good news is that the biggest cyst was gone as well as the other "cyst friends" on each ovary. There were also no polyps or abnormalities seen this time. My endometrian lining had decreased from 18mm to 6mm. My right ovary was now listed as "normal" and my left ovary had reduced in size (heading toward normal). The most important news was: no signs of cancer... and I wouldn't need another "date" with the ultrasound wand for 6 months.
Obviously I was very excited and relieved by this news! The gamble had paid off!

The gamble you ask?
Tamoxifen vs No Tamoxifen, that was the gamble. All these new "accessories" in my uterus and ovaries had appeared during the 8 months I was taking Tamoxifen.
(details in previous post: "Less is More: Tamoxifen 'accessories'" --- the link is below)

Some people would say put up with these side effects because it could likely keep me from getting cancer again. Some other people might say that the side effects were too great - not balanced with quality of life.
My oncologist is trying to get me on the other breast cancer drug (that would require shots to put me in early menopause so I could take that drug) and I have said NO. Would you agree to that?

Maybe I am one of those people that have extreme side effects to medications. Maybe other people take Tamoxifen with no problems (other than the usual side effects: hot flashes, night sweats, weight gain, bone density issues, possible vision problems). Whatever the case may be, I stopped Tamoxifen after 8 months. The side effects were more than I bargained for and the phrase "quality of life" means a lot to me.

As I always say, my decisions are not for everyone and no one should make decisions about Tamoxifen based on what I write.
I do know what is right for me  - my body became my science project - and my gamble paid off.

1 comment:

  1. Gooooo, Elizabeth! Way to take control of your life. I'm so proud of you. :-)