Monday, September 24, 2012

An Update, and A Favor

I just wanted to give everyone a quick update. I had two pre-op appointments today so now I am all set for my second surgery on the 11th (just over two weeks away). I don't really feel nervous about this surgery since I know the recovery time will be much faster than last time. The surgery is on a Thursday and I will be back at work the following Monday. I had a blood count last week and while my white count is a little low and my platelets have fallen, they aren't low enough for him to delay surgery (thank goodness).

Here is the newest hair growth picture (the first pic you see is the last pic from my previous post).

No for the favor part of the post.

Right after I was diagnosed I read a book written by Dr. Susan Love. She is a breast cancer specialist and advocate, and her research foundation "works to eradicate breast cancer and improve the quality of women's health through innovative research, education, and advocacy."

The foundation has just launched the Health of Women (HOW) Study with the goals of tracking hundreds of thousands of women over the next 20 years in order to help determine what causes breast cancer and how to prevent it. They are also tracking survivors like myself in order to help determine factors that influence recurrence and survival. The study just launched this morning and already they have over 4400 people signed up, but the more the better. 

What I am asking is that you take the time to participate in this groundbreaking study. All you have to do is create an account and fill out periodic questionnaires online. That's it. It doesn't matter if you have never had breast cancer, or have no family history of it. If you know any other breast cancer survivors please send this link to them as well.

The more we can learn about this awful disease the better. 

Click here to join the study or for more information.

Help me reach my goal for the Susan G. Komen Twin Cities 3-Day

Thursday, September 13, 2012

The hair is coming back!

Time has really been flying by lately. Tomorrow will mark 7 weeks since my last treatment and also six months since my surgery. I really have been feeling fantastic! I try to walk most days during my lunch break. I am running a few times a week. That has been slow to come back, but I am up to about a mile and a half now. I have also become addicted to yoga and do it 4-5 nights a week. My blood counts are coming back up and I can tell a difference in my energy levels. I still get tired a little easier than before, but that might last for up to a year or so. My fingertips are still numb most of the time and my nails are still sensitive and discolored, but they are growing out. I have now had two Herceptin-only infusions and I don't seem to have any side effects.

I had a repeat echocardiogram a few weeks ago. The bad news is the pericardial effusion didn't get any smaller (despite skipping my last Taxotere and a month of high dose Ibuprofen), but the good news is it isn't getting any bigger. Both my oncologist and cardiologist are comfortable waiting on it for now. I will have another ultrasound in October.

Now for the big hair! It is definitely growing back. I have actually had to break out my razor, which was both exciting and yet a little disappointing at the same time. There have definitely been some perks to not having any hair! It will still be a while before I can go without the wig, but at least things are progressing in the right direction. Here are the last 4 weeks of pictures.

This past weekend Derek and I along with some family and friends did the Steppin' Out in Pink Breast Cancer Walk in LaCrosse, WI. It was a longer walk at almost 5 miles, but it was a gorgeous day and we had a blast. Thank you to everyone who came out for it!

Help me reach my goal for the Susan G. Komen Twin Cities 3-Day