Thursday, September 30, 2010

Thyroid issues!

So here I was worried about a uterine biopsy and didn't think twice about the bloodwork ordered by the doc. Then I got a call yesterday from my GP telling me my TSH is way too high and I need to come in immediately to get a prescription for medication.

Then, the other doc phones & orders me in to see him as well. So my TSH is over triple the maximum amount - they really want to get it under control. It means that my thyroid is underactive.

So my GP order a re-test on the TSH just to make sure, and also an ultrasound of my thyroid - although he palpated it and said it feels normal so I'm not really worried about thyroid cancer, but I guess and ultrasound won't hurt just to make sure what's happening there.

The good news about this is that apparently thyroid issues can be a cause of the 'girl problems' I was having - so potentially, getting on the thyroid meds could solve that problem without any surgery of any kind.

The bad news is that you stay on thyroid meds for your whole life.

Gyno says that breast cancer and thyroid issues are not linked at all. However, GP thinks the radiation or chemo might have affected my thyroid. On the other hand, I've been having this lady issues for awhile - long before the breast cancer, so it could be that I've had a screwy thyroid for a long time.... hmmmmmm.

Apparently thyroid meds will give me more energy and will speed up my metabolism so I will lose weight more easily. I guess that's a bright side.

Of course, I didn't think I felt too tired until they told me that I would feel tired. So now I feel fatigued and I don't know if it's real or if the idea was planted by them..... Off for a nap!

Monday, September 27, 2010

So far, so good

Just got back from my uterine biopsy. The camera didn't show anything suspicious - he took the biopsy to send away to the lab but he felt pretty confident that we weren't going to come up with any scary results.

He told me that the process can be a little uncomfortable so I might want to take a couple of Advil before coming. So instead, I took two Tylenol 3s with codeine. OVERKILL - that's what I'm talking about - why be in pain or discomfort if you have the means not to be.....

I was light-headed at the appointment since I hadn't eaten anything ha ha. Decided it was a good time to get bloodwork done too - didn't even feel the needle go in. Doc says the T3 won't affect the bloodwork so what the heck.

Time for a nap now, though!!!!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Good news on a Bad day....

So yesterday I saw a specialist to make a re-start on addressing some 'female issues' that I had made a start on last year before I discovered the lump. Those issues were laid to rest for 6 months of chemo - but now they are back with a vengeance and I need help with them.

So I went there and was completely freaked out and shocked to learn that the first thing he is going to do is biopsy my uterus for cancer. He described how breast cancer and uterine cancer are very similar with similar triggers - and also that the oral drug I take daily increases the risk of uterine cancer. OK - he also went on to describe how there could be many other reasons why I have the issues I do, but since I just had cancer, it seems logical to rule that out first. Of course, I'm no idiot - I am happy to rule out cancer - but after what I've just been through, hearing 'potential cancer' again really put my world into a whirl. Last biopsy for that reason wasn't the result I was hoping for.

During the appointment I was shaky and on the verge of a meltdown. Even though my logical brain recognizes the intelligence of the process - and also recognizes that I had these issues long before any cancer problems - and I have a family history of these issues - and I just had six months of chemo - so I really do KNOW he isn't going to find any cancer in there..... BUT - I think it would only be human nature to have this worrying doubt of 'what if'. So the story is that he puts a camera in my uterus to take a look on Monday (yup - the 27th. he wanted to do it on the 23rd but I have chemo that day....). I apologize for the visual - however, think of it from MY point of view.... UGH! if only it were just the visual for me.....

Anyway, if he sees anything in there that is obviously cancer, I will then obviously require a hysterectomy - and, presumably, all the other crap that goes along with yet another cancer diagnosis. However, I didn't get into that with him as I am confident he is only going to see the problematic stuff that I know is in there from previous ultrasounds etc. (ie, fibroids). Then there are other options but whatever he said after 'cancer' was kind of all a blur to me - I do remember that he said he was throwing a lot of info at me and he would go over it all again another time. So I guess I won't worry about the other options yet until he sees what's going on.

So that was the bad day part. Only because of how I was feeling - I realize that the news he was giving me isn't bad news - it's only smart to check the worst option first to eliminate it. As scary as that sounds.

the Good News part is that after that appointment, I went to see my plastic surgeon. He was visibly SHOCKED with how well my surgery turned out. And he even said that he was not expecting to have this good a result - didn't even think it was possible. Of course, this was a little disconcerting for me but I was glad to hear he was happy..... If you recall, at my post-radiation appointment, he was unhappy with the location of my expander and felt he could not successfully make an implant work with where the tissue had expanded and was going to build me a breast out of my own tissues from my tummy or back. I balked. Or, as he described it 'I was adamant' that I didn't want that. So the option of replacing the expander was really sort of 'experimental'. However, I didn't realize JUST how experimental it was until after I saw his serious surprise at the great result. He actually THANKED me for forcing his hand because now he knows that is actually an option and because he feels that he will be able to create me a better breast now than if he had used my own tissue. Yay - something finally worked out!!!

When I got home, I had to describe both appointments to Cam. I had a hard time describing my day without melting down, but he was very kind and let me take my time & told me that he would go with me to my biopsy next week. After talking with Cam, I felt much better and was able to start focussing on the good news of the fabulous boobs I'm going to end up with.

FYI - final boob job slated for February. (rough estimate - based on expansion time)

Monday, September 13, 2010

Starting to feel normal again....

So we arrived at the hospital at 11:15, then I explained to the nurse that the physio department had been trying to reach me for a couple of weeks for my 12 month follow-up from my original surgery. So the nurse phoned them and the physio asked me to come down right away as they wanted my final measurements before my surgery. So all gowned up, we trekked across the hospital for me to have my arms measured for physio... Talk about leaving it to the last minute ha ha.

Everything happened on time - weird! This time, they didn't IV me in advance - they had me again climb onto the operating table myself (at around 1:30), but this time they gave me gas to knock me out and then put the IV in me. It's good for the IV part, but you taste and breathe the gas afterward - it's yucky. When I came to in recovery, I found it very bright and very loud in there. I was happy to be wheeled back to the surgical admissions area. Then they gave me some apple juice and then I was on my way by around 5:30.

When I got home, I was 'out of sorts'. Sitting down on the couch in different positions and then getting up and wandering aimlessly. Finally, I decided to just lay down and slept for a couple of hours. They sent me home with a handful of painkillers and a sheet of instructions that I only half read. I dug up my T3s from last year as Cam said the new prescription was a T3 only without caffeine - and you may remember I had issues with being able to sleep last time because of the caffeine. so I wanted to conserve those ones for the nighttime and was using my old ones in the day.

So after taking 2 painkillers every 4 hours religiously for Thursday night, Friday and Friday night, I finally read the paper that was sent home with me and read that they are only sending home the few strong painkillers 'just in case' and that really I should be just fine with regular Tylenol or Advil. OOPS - I totally overdrugged myself. Oh well - I didn't feel much pain that's for sure. But on Saturday morning I decided I wanted to go to the bathroom again - yes - same problem as last time - and since I read I didn't really need the painkillers anyway, what the heck.

I was feeling fairly poorly all weekend - either from the anaesthetic working its way out of my system, or my overdosing of painkiller. Cam and I tried to drive somewhere together, and I had to ask him to bring me home a few blocks away as I got nauseous in the car. It happened twice so I gave up trying to ride in a car. So tonight was the first time I drove myself since I'm off the painkillers and had no nausea so I guess I'm ok to drive now. I have no mobility issues for driving.

While today I didn't feel sickly, I was still highly unmotivated and spent most of the day in bed and didn't get dressed until after Cam came home from work. I'll try a little harder tomorrow I think. Maybe. That being said, I DID prepare supper for him, and did a bit of laundry so I wasn't a total slug.

I guess since last year was my only other experience to draw on, I was thinking back to that, but in retrospect, I had BOTH sides operated on last time, and on my left side it was quite extensive since it also included removal of 9 lymph nodes - so this time is easy peasy in comparison. And my whole right side is fully mobile which means I can get myself in and out of bed without help - which was a real problem last year.

I meet with the plastic surgeon in a week so he can survey his handiwork. I believe he will be happy with his work but I'll give you guys an update when I have it.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

I'm home!

A little sore as to be expected but none the worse for wear...

Tissue Expander Replacement Surgery today.

To clarify, today the plastic surgeon is replacing the current tissue expander that I have with a taller one so it will stretch more tissue in a better location.

I am to be at the hospital for 11:15 for surgery around 1ish, I think it's a short one - maybe 45 minutes or an hour and then probably a few hours in recovery then they boot me out. I'm thinking I'll be home tonight sometime - maybe 8 or 9 or 10? (based on my experience that surgery never happens when it is actually scheduled).

I was trying to squeeze in a bunch of things before I had this surgery so on Tuesday night I didn't get to sleep until almost 2am and then had to be at the hospital for 7:30am for a mammogram - so I was really tired and went to bed last night at 9pm. So I already had around 7 hours of sleep when I awoke at 4am so I've been up and about since then.

Last night, Cam and I went for a latish sushi dinner where I stuffed myself silly since I'm not allowed to eat after midnight and I'm already hungry and can't do anything about it.

I'll try to post something later when I get home - or get Cam to do it - although I'm reluctant after last time..... BTW - if anyone by any chance still has any of my original emails (prior to this blog being made) - or still has Cam's email that he sent out after my surgery, please forward them to me.... thanks!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

No overnight for me

So the surgery is definitely next Thursday (Sep 9) and they are definitely not letting me stay overnight in the hospital.... so I hope my 'nurses' at home here are up for the challenge.

Too bad - I was looking forward to the really comfy bed. Oh well.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Surgery date released!

Under the knife again next Thursday. Most likely anyway... I say that because I called back to confirm if I was booked in overnight at the hospital and was told that I wasn't and that most people don't stay overnight after what they are doing for me....

So she will ask the surgeon about the option of staying overnight but if I really want to I might not be able to go the 9th... So I'm pretty sure I will stick with the 9th regardless of whether they let me stay or not since I would like to get this over with, but I'll see what they say tomorrow.