Wednesday, October 29, 2008

But it's worth it

Started Cycle 3 today, the nausea is much worse this time, I think I might have fallen asleep for 1/2 hr watching TV, otherwise I have been hugging the great white telephone.

But it's worth it. The official word from my oncologist is that my main tumor is now 25% its original size and is DEAD; effectively we are just waiting for the remaining tissue to be broken down.

I still have an active spot in my left buttock which will be biopsied in the near future to determine what action, if any, we need to take. But from where we were to were we are, I couldn't be happier.

I will have another PET scan after cycle 4 (8 weeks from now) and if the cancer is completely gone, then I will have an additional 2 cycles and then radiation, if not, an additional 4 cycles will be required before the radiation. I would be happy with 6!

I am going to take a risk and try eating something to see if it settles my stomach so i'll sign off; robust though my Mac is, I am not sure the keyboard is vomit resistant.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Great news

I have not spoken directly to the oncologist but Nicky had a brief conversation with her this morning. Regardless the news is excellent.

My main tumor has reduced in size by 75% and all signs of hyperactivity have ceased. This is fantastic. Of course I still have four cycles of chemo and four weeks of radiation to endure but it is the first piece of news that gives us hope for the future, and tremendous hope at that.

Nicky and I are taking her mum out to lunch to celebrate. I'll post specifics about the scan on Monday when I meet with the oncologist.

Ta Ta For Now (For the W3 challenged)

Monday, October 20, 2008

Big day tomorrow

I am scheduled to have a PET scan tomorrow at 8AM. By the end of the day I should have a fair idea as to how effective the treatment has been, at least thus far. Obviously, I am hoping for a significant reduction, if not elimination, of my primary tumor, but simply being in the know as to what is going on is somehow empowering.

Whatever the result, I'll let you all know soonest.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Pulmonary function test

I had my pulmonary function test today, basically the B component of my ABVD chemo is lung toxic, so they are monitoring me for potential lung problems as the damage is permanent.

Great news, my lung function has actually improved, probably because of the steroids, but still, it is a relief to know that, at least thus far, I am not being permanently damaged by the treatment.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Cycle 2 complete

Had my 4th chemo treatment yesterday, cycle 2 is now complete 8 more treatments and I will be done with the chemo.

Can't sleep, it's the roids, and I feel particularly crap but that is to be expected.

My cumidin level have finally reached an acceptable level so my clot should start to dissipate soon.

Not much else to report, hopefully I will have a slightly better disposition, I'll post again by then.

Deep, apparently I am a bit of anomally. With Arythromiacin (sp) your hair is normally gone in three weeks, mine is thinning but still holding on, so maybe a refund is in order :-)

Thursday, October 9, 2008

A big shout out to Doug

Just wanted to give a big shout out to Doug, part of our extended family.

Doug and I went to the same school, both attended Sandhurst and both did our bit for Queen and country.

Doug has just been given the bad news that he has the big C. I know he has the mettle to stare it down and beat it into submission but I will be channeling some of the abundance of good will I have been receiving in his direction.

Our standing orders are still in place: Find, Fix, Destroy.

Feeding the honey monster

The honey monster, aka me, received a package today. It was from Honey Monster Foods, Teresa, a very good friend of ours, emailed them and told them of my plight. How awesome is that, I am now the proud owner of two boxes of sugar puffs which will be consumed immediately. Sugar puffs are to Honey Smacks what Cadburys is to hersheys, that is fantastic.

Give me the honey mummy.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Justin getting his chemo

Here's a quick snap of me getting my chemo, the lady in the background is Alice, she and Lilia are responsible for administering my chemo; they are both totally awesome. I often have small niggling questions for them, sometimes I am embarassed about asking questions that they might consider foolish but they both give each and every question a complete and considered answer; they are both heroes to me.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

My own private chernobyl

Nicky and I met with my radiation oncologist today. Once my chemo is finished I will have a three week break before I start my radiation therapy. I will get a does of radiation 5 days a week for 4 weeks.

Although I understand it is absolutely necessary, I am more worried about the radiation than anything else. Even though the probability of lung and thyroid cancer as a result of the treatment is very low, I think it is the nature of it that scares me so much; I was really glad Nicky was with me, the insecurity I felt was similar to my first day at boarding school.

I'm sure I'll get used to the idea it's just not something I am looking forward to.

Like porridge

Apparently my blood is not thinning as effectively as they would like, my warafarin does has been upped to 10MG and the daily shots continue.

The clot is causing some discomfort in my shoulder that makes normal day to day activities quite painful, driving for instance. Vicodin is effective in addressing the pain but somewhat incapacitating.

Hopefully, the dosage will stabilize soon and the clot will dissipate.

British Airways has issued a voucher for future travel for the full amount of our tickets. It would have been nice to get the money back but at least we didn't loose it all. As to whether the voucher will cover the cost of flights, when and if we take them, depends on a multitude of economic factors, most of which I do not understand. It seems that most of the economic intelligentsia don't understand either so I am in good company.

Friday, October 3, 2008

A welcome visit

My team at Apple, that is the team I belong to, have just shipped version 2.2 of AppleTV; so I was very honoured that rather than celebrate the result of their hard work by taking some down time and having a few bevvies, three of them braved the somewhat arduous trek to Concord to visit me.

I can't tell you how much they lifted my spirits. I am sure I was not very good company, I tend to tire fairly quickly, but it was marvelous to see them and experience a little of the banter that makes working with them such a pleasure.

Thanks chaps.