I was able to get an appointment with my oncologist this afternoon. This is a feat and a credit to how wonderful she is because I was the last appointment on Friday afternoon before she leaves for vacation. Up to this point in my diagnosis, I have felt sort of shuffled around and it didn't help that I had a new surgeon, too. It helps to hear bad news from someone who you know and who knows you.
My oncologist got right down to business. Her best case option is sort of "outside the box". She thinks that there is a possibility that I may be able to have radiation to stop this cancer in its tracks. It is not a sure thing; I have to meet with a radiation oncologist next week to see whether this is an option for me. I guess it has to do with the fact that the cancer is in a few different places. My doctor has another patient in a similar situation that is going through this treatment right now. This would be GREAT. Radiation is sort of scary, but I would take it over chemo any day (as long as it does the work!).
I also asked about the possibility of specialists and/or clinical trials outside the area. She is working to get information about any trials that I may be suited for at either Duke or UNC, and I should hear something about this next week. Not only did I get a last minute appointment, my doctor is going to communicate any pertinent info via email WHILE SHE IS ON VACATION. And I already thought she was awesome.
I have this rash on my chest (left boob) that has been there for over a month now. I had her look at that and now I need a biopsy to make sure it isn't some kind of manifestation of my cancer. The treatment for that sounds absolutely awful, so I am hoping that it is some kind of fungal infection. The doctor suggested this as a possibility as well, so she prescribed some kind of topical cream to use on it until I see a dermatologist next week.
So, also, part of my pathology hasn't come back yet, but there is the possibility that one of my receptors is positive this time around. That would be good because I would be able to take tamoxifin to keep cancer at bay; this is something that was not an option the first time around because my receptors were all negative. I am anxious to get the results.
I feel like I got some good news with lots of possible options today. I really expected to go in there and leave with an appointment to get another port and start chemo next week. Really. So it was a pleasant surprise to walk away from the appointment with hope that treatment might not be chemo for an indefinite period of time. Because basically, if the radiation thing doesn't pan out, it is likely that I will have to have chemo for the rest of my life. That doesn't sound so good.