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Old 01-07-2016, 07:22 PM   #1
WayTooYoung
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Location: Toronto
Posts: 64
Feeling down...

Hello ladies,

Lately, I have been feeling really down. I am not sure if it's because of the winter weather or the lack of sunlight out there, but I feel frustrated, sad, hopeless, and just tired of all these treatments and appointments. Is it normal to feel this way? Right now, I feel like I am the only person in the world that is going through this. When I go online to check FB and Instagram, I see other people dealing with this horrible disease with such pizazz and strength and I wonder where my strength has gone. To top is off, the pain in my back from spine mets is pressing against nerves and causing me pain. Some days, I feel really unmotivated to leave my bed.

I have stopped going to the gym and I took time time off work to try and focus on my healing, but now I am beginning to feel like I am losing myself altogether. Has anyone ever felt like that? It's a pretty scary feeling.

If anyone can chime in and share their thoughts, experiences, and words of wisdom with me, I would really appreciate it. I am in real need of some words of encouragement...

Thanks in advance

N
__________________
Feb/2010-Diagnosed with IDC ER+, PR+, Her2+++(age 28)
Mar 2010- 6 Rounds of FECT (made me sick as a dog)
Jun 2010- Finished chemo
Jul 2010- Mastectomy +12 lymphs (4+)
Oct 2010- Radiation/Begin Herceptin (Her2 was overlooked by my Onco!)
Sep 2011- End of Herceptin
Nov 2011- Recurrence-->Chest Wall, muscle, and possible lymph (ER+, PR-, Her2+++)...WTF!!!???!!!
Feb 2012-Randomized for Clinical Trial
Feb 2012- Begin blind study either TDM1 w/Pertuzumab or TDM1 w/Placebo Pertuzumab
Jan 2013-2nd Recurrence, off TDM1...what next?
Feb 2013-chest wall resection
Feb 2013-Begin Zoladex :(
Apr 2013-Begin Femara
Jul 2013-Oopherectomy + both tubes
Oct 2013-Chest wall recurrence same spot...Dr monitor
Nov 2013-New nodule on chest...restaging...bone/ct clear...continue to monitor
Mar 2014-Surgeon fr/dif hospital confirms lung metasis based on review of CT scan from Nov...Onc recommends Aromasin/Affinitor...
Apr 2014-Start Herceptin+Vinorelbine
Sep 2014-New pain in lower back, MRI confirms metastasis
Oct 2014-SBRT to lungs
Nov 2014-SBRT to lower back
Dec 2014-Restaging confirms two new nodules to lungs and lower spine :(
Jan 2015-Xeloda and Tykerb (good response)
Aug 2015-Xeloda/Tykerb not working...Dr wants to try Taxol/Herceptin combo...problem, Herceptin not covered by OHIP
Sep 2015-Begin Taxol continue Xgeva
Oct 2015-Add Herceptin
Nov 2015-CT stable but MRI shows new mets to spine :(
Jan/Feb 2016-Start Erubulin (Halavan)
May 2016-Progression...Stop Erubulin
June 2016-PMH to explore Clinical Trial options...consideration for Immunotherapy
July 2016-Screening for Trial...Still without treatment, experiencing low appetite, low energy, pain, and rapid wieght loss...cachexia???



You never know how STRONG you really are...until being strong is the only CHOICE you have...
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Old 01-08-2016, 05:18 AM   #2
Juls
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Posts: 563
Re: Feeling down...

Hi
Just reading your post and wanted to say Hi!
I really understand how your feeling.
Dull winter weather certainly doesn't help. I'm in Scotland and it's dark all the time - think I am hibernating!!
Take care
Juls
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Old 01-08-2016, 07:40 AM   #3
lkc Gumby
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Posts: 435
Re: Feeling down...

Hi honey, I am sorry you are feeling down. No doubt the terrible winter blues and all the BC crap.
my feeling is having bc is quite isolating itself. Sometimes it helps to have a mirror bc sister someone you can chat to ( even if it's online). That is walking down a similar road as you.
I don ' have any other advice except be gentle with yourself, surround yourself with positive people and let it ride for abit. If no better talk to your doctor. A great majority of women with bc suffer true depression. Hoping you feel better soon.
__________________
Linda

Dxed Stage IIIC May 05, 12 pos nodes
er/pr -neg,Her -pos
LVI
Right partial mast & partial axillary dissection-June14,2005
Right modified mast-no clear margins- June 30, 2005
DD AC x4
Taxotere X4 with Herceptin
Rads x 35( 5 fields )
Left prophylactive mast( atypia & hyperplasia found ),
put on Tamoxifen x 1 yr; D/ced due to endometrial thickening
bilateral recon (saline implants)May 06
Nipple recon July 06
metformin 2010
removal of implants due to severe encapsulation, insertion of gummies 2013
Reclast Q yr
NED!!!
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Old 01-08-2016, 07:48 AM   #4
MaineRottweilers
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Posts: 568
Re: Feeling down...

I am right there with you: winter blues, newly Dx'd with spinal mets, pain, unable to work, hard to find joy or reason to press forward. I rarely leave the house. I keep waiting to die. I think it's part of the grieving process. I am certain things will get better for us. I've been trying to set goals for myself through out the day. They are just small ones: get dressed, feed the pets, clean one room, make a meal, write a letter, read, nap. I got a fit bit and I try to make sure I climb stairs at least five times each day and walk about 3000 steps. The dark, dreary cold of Winter blues is what really does me in. If this were Spring I would have a very different outlook. I would be outside on the lawn or in the woods photographing trees, birds, bugs, leaves, mushrooms. Everything is dead now, there's nothing to photograph and it's so icy right now that I am terrified to go outside and venture too far for fear of falling and breaking. Come on SPRING! No, no you are not alone. Set small goals so you feel like you have some achievements each day. I guess I better go climb the stairs and get dressed.
__________________
Tracy Arcari
___________________________________________
11/12 BSE ignored the lump for SIX months.
5/1/13 IDC ER/PR- HER2/neu+++
5/14/13 Mastectomy and SN biopsy
5/20/13 IDC Stage IIb Grade 3 Nodes 1/4 also IDC and DCIS multi focal in remaining dissected tissue.
5/30/13 MUGA and CT thorax, abdomen & pelvis, establish baseline.
6/4/13 Installed my little purple power port.
6/14/13 Chemo started TCH
6/14/13 Informed of suspicious ares on scans scheduled PET.
7/1/13 PET Scan NED!
9/27/13 FINAL CHEMO taken! ----well, maybe not.
10/15/13 Three little tattoos.
10/24/13 Radiation begins and fourth tattoo placed.
11/27/13 Perfectly radiant! Radiation completed the day before Thanksgiving and so, so much to be thankful for this year and every day hereafter.
1/2/14 Happy New Year, you have a Goiter? Muga down to 59%.
1/17/14 Hashimoto's Dz Dx'd. Now maybe I'll feel BETTER!
5/2/14 Herceptin completed! New kitten!
8/19/14 Prophylactic mastectomy (right) and PORT OUT! I'm DONE and now I really am a SURVIVOR.
2/15 Started not feeling so swell. Memory lapses and GI issues with nausea and blurry vision.
4/30/15 U/S cystic gallbladder, cyst on right ovary and mass in my uterus. GYN consult scheduled---and cancelled. I'm not ready.
5/4/15 Brain MRI clear (big sigh of relief)
7/30/15 Back Pain
8/31/15 Radiograph: compression fracture L2
9/10/15 Bone Scan positive
9/21/15 CT scan conclusive for tumor
10/1/15 CT guided biopsy & Brain to Pelvis MRI reveal additional lesions on spine C6, T10, T11 and L2 is collapsing.
10/8/15 Abbreviated pathology: new tumor(s) poorly differentiated carcinoma consistent with known breast primary.
ER-/PR+ (40%)
HER2/neu+++ Ki-67 4% Pancytokeratin AE1/3 Strong Positivity in all malignant cells.
10/13/15 Abnormal Dexa: moderate risk of fracture to both femoral head/neck R&L. Significant risk to lumbar spine.
10/14/15 Radiation consult back to the cooker.
10/20/15 MUGA 50% down from 54% after a year off Herceptin (???)
10/21/15 Kyphoplasty L2
10/22/15 Re-start Chemo: Perjeta, Herceptin & Taxotere
10/26/15 PET Scan confirms C6, T10-11, L2, new lesion noted at L4 but no visceral involvement---Happy dance!!!
10//29/15 Xgeva
10/29/15 Radiation Simulation--three new tattoos to add to my collection. Just call me Dotty.
10/30/15 CA27-29 63 U/mol (<38 U/mol)
11/3/15 First Trip to see Dr. E. Mayer at DFCI
11/4/15 Surgical consult to re-install my little purple power port.
11/9/15 Radiation treatment one of five.
11/10/15 Installed my little purple power port and not a moment too soon, took them four tries to get an IV started today.
Yes, we really are going down this road again.
12/5/15 CT for suspected pulmonary embolism demonstrates increase in T10-11 mets.
12/8/15 Bone Scan uptake at T10-11 (not seen 9/17/15) & Right 8th Rib (not evident on PET 10/26/15)
12/10/15 Consult Re: PROGRESSION. Halt THP due today. Schedule PET and order TDM1 for next week. PLAN B.
12/14/15 PET scan: NO PROGRESSION! THP is working, metabolic activity minimal. Merry Christmas to me! Sticking with PLAN A, it's working.
1/7/16 Start Taxol weekly instead of Taxotere (has been too taxing and not rebounding between txs.) Zometa instead of Xgeva.
3/28/16 CT shows new sclerotic lesions on T12, L3, L5, L6, right ilium and head of right femur. No uptake on Bone Scan (progression????)
3/31/16 Discontinue Taxol start Arimidex, still getting H&P.
6/2/16 Discontinue Arimidex and start Exemestane.
6/18/16 PET is NEAD!!
7/1/16 Discontinue Exemestane and restart Armidex (SEs)
8/29/16 CT/Bone Scan Stable (still uptake at T10-11)
10/3/16 BSO pathology negative
10/10/16 MRI: Brain clear!
10/14/16 Switched care to Harold Alfond Center for Cancer Care
11/24/16 Xgeva, New MO preference to Zometa
12/12/16 CT/Bone scan Mostly stable significant uptake at L2 plan to PET
1/12/17 PET shows NEAD celebrate with a new puppy!
3/29/17 CT & BS = NEAD
7/31/17 Aetna denies access to H&P <gearing up for a fight>
8/4/17 CT& BS= STABLE
8/9/17 No treatment, Aetna still denying H&P
8/14/17 Aetna appeal approved H&P through February 2018!
2/5/18 CT & BS = STABLE

//
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Old 01-08-2016, 11:14 AM   #5
jra40
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Posts: 260
Re: Feeling down...

I too have felt the same way recently, tired of all the tests, doctors, poking, prodding, mental games going on in my head - life with cancer can be so exhausting! Tracy - you really have some great advice for us to use! How about those new paint places popping up in shopping malls? That seems fun! Someone got me one of those adult coloring books you see on the TV commercials, I thought, "I'm never going to do that!" but last satuday, I found myself sitting in my chair and having fun coloring! It was mentally stimulating!

Stay positive, don't let cancer win - fight, fight, fight!!
__________________
11/17/10 - Diagnosed with 4.5cm tumor in right breast, IDC, Stage 2, Nuclear grade 2, ER+ PR+ HER2+
12/13/10 - Lymph node biopsy - negative
12/28/10 - Started neo-adjuvant treatment along with clinical trial with 4 rounds of AC chemo every 3 weeks
3/15/11 - Began weekly Taxol/Herceptin infusions along with 750mg of Tykerb taken by mouth daily
6/28/11 - Finished last cycle of Taxol
7/27/11 - Breast MRI shows tumor has dissolved, remarkable reaction to chemo
8/31/11 - Lumpectomy, Sentinel Node biopsy. Node negative, clear margins, 7mm of cancer left over from chemo.
10/05/11 - Started radiation, 5 days a week for 7 weeks.
11/8/11 - Finished radiation
3/21/12 - Last Herceptin!
3/26/12 - Port removed!
Tamoxifen for 5 years
8/4/15 - Hysterectomy & bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. Due to large fibroids. No cancer!
8/8/15 - Started Arimidex
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Old 01-08-2016, 11:40 AM   #6
SoCalGal
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Location: LA LA Land
Posts: 1,606
Re: Feeling down...

Yes, I go through this all of the time. Trying to stay motivated and GRATEFUL not hateful (haha). The gloomy weather does not help anyone stay cheery. Depression, disconnection, isolation are all common side-effects of metastatic breast cancer (MBC) as is exhaustion and pain. I am fortunate that I have no pain FROM CANCER---but---I have new pain from ??? life. So I'm back in PT, again with the 5000 glute crunches, trying to resolve sciatica nerve pain. So many random symptoms, numbness, lack of energy - it's no wonder that facing each day with a degree of "positivity" is so hard. My mantra of late is "get a toe hold" and keep moving up! Forcing myself to get daily exercise, even if it means breaking it down to 2-3 mini walks definitely helps. I also like social dancing, so even if I can only get there and watch, that is better for my mood than missing out.

You are way too young - even more isolating. Hope you are in touch with Young Survivors Coalition and other resources for support. AND, for the record, I was diagnosed in 1996---age 38---before internet, herceptin and lots of other stuff.

It is possible to survive and even thrive at times
Get a toe hold...
xo
__________________
1996 cancer WTF?! 1.3 cm lumpectomy Er/Pr neg. Her2+ (20nodes NEGATIVE) did CMF + rads. NED.
2002 recurrence. Bilateral mastectomy w/TFL autologous recon. Then ACx2. Skin lymphatic rash. Taxotere w/Herceptin x4. Herceptin/Xeloda. Finally stops spreading.
2003 - Back to surgery, remove skin mets, and will have surgery one week later when pathology can confirm margins.
‘03 latisimus dorsi flap to remove skin mets. CLEAN MARGINS. Continue single agent Herceptin thru 4/04. NED.
‘04 '05 & 06 tiny recurrences - scar line. surgery to cut out. NED each time.
1/2006 Rads again, to scar line. NED.

3/07 Heartbreaking news - mets! lungs.sternum. Try Tykerb/Xeloda. Tykerb/Carbo/Gemzar. Switch Oncs.
12/07 Herceptin.Tykerb. Markers go stable.
2/8/08 gamma knife 13mm stupid brain met.
3/08 Herceptin/tykerb/avastin/zometa.
3/09 brain NED. Lungs STABLE.
4/09 attack sternum (10 daysPHOTONS.5 days ELECTRONS)
9/09 MARKERS normal!
3/10 PET/CT=manubrium intensely metabolically active but stable. NEDhead.
Wash out 5/10 for tdm1 but 6/10 CT STABLE, PET improving. Markers normal. Brain NED. Resume just Herceptin plus ZOMETA
Dec 2010 Brain NED, lungs/sternum stable. markers normal.
MAR 2011 stop Herceptin/allergy! Go back on Tykerb and switch to Xgeva.
May-Aug 2011 Tykerb Herceptin Xgeva.
Sept 2011 Tykerb, Herceptin, Zometa, Avastin.
April 2012 sketchy drug trial in NYC. 6 weeks later I’m NED!
OCT 2012 PET/CT shows a bunch of freakin’ progression. Back to LA and Herceptin.avastin.zometa.
12/20/12 add in PERJETA!
March 2013 – 5 YEARS POST continue HAPZ
APRIL 2013 - 6 yrs stage 4. "FAILED" PETscan on 4/2/13
May 2013: rePetted - improvement in lungs, left adrenal stable, right 6th rib inactive, (must be PERJETA avastin) sternum and L1 fruckin'worsen. Drop zometa. ADD Xgeva. Doc says get rads consultant for L1 and possible biopsy of L1. I say, no thanks, doc. Lets see what xgeva brings to the table first. It's summer.
June-August 2013HAPX Herceptin Avastin Perjeta xgeva.
Sept - now - on chemo hold for calming tummy we hope. Markers stable for 2 months.
Nov 2013 - Herceptin-Perjeta-Avastin-Xgeva (collageneous colitis, which explains tummy probs, added Entocort)
December '13 BRAIN MRI ned in da head.
Jan 2014: CONTINUING on HAPX…
FEB 2014 PetCT clinical “impression”: 1. newbie nodule - SUV 1.5 right apical nodule, mildly hypermetabolic “suggestive” of worsening neoplastic lesion. 2. moderate worsening of the sternum – SUV 5.6 from 3.8
3. increasing sclerosis & decreasing activity of L1 met “suggests” mild healing. (SUV 9.4 v 12.1 in May ‘13)
4. scattered lung nodules, up to 5mm in size = stable, no increased activity
5. other small scattered sclerotic lesions, one in right iliac and one in thoracic vertebral body similar in appearance to L1 without PET activity and not clearly pathologic
APRIL 2014 - 6 YRS POST GAMMA ZAP, 7 YRS MBC & 18 YEARS FROM ORIGINAL DX!
October 2014: hold avastin, continue HPX
Feb 2015 Cancer you lost. NEDHEAD 7 years post gamma zap miracle, 8 years ST4, +19 yrs original diagnosis.
Continue HPX. Adding back Avastin
Nov 2015 pet/ct is mixed result. L1 SUV is worse. Continue Herceptin/avastin/xgeva. Might revisit Perjeta for L1. Meantime going for rads consult for L1
December 2015 - brain stable. Continue Herceptin, Perjeta, Avastin and xgeva.
Jan 2016: 5 days, 20 grays, Rads to L1 and continue on HAPX. I’m trying to "save" TDM1 for next line. Hope the rads work to quiet L1. Sciatic pain extraordinaire :((
Markers drop post rads.
2/24/16 HAP plus X - markers are down
SCIATIC PAIN DEAL BREAKER.
3/23/16 Laminectomy w/coflex implant L4/5. NO MORE SCIATIC PAIN!!! Healing.
APRIL 2016 - 9 YRS MBC
July 2016 - continue HAP plus Xgeva.
DEC 2016 - PETCT: mets to sternum, lungs, L1 still about the same in size and PET activity. Markers not bad. Not making changes if I don't need to. Herceptin/Perjeta/Avastin/Xgeva
APRIL 2017 10 YEARS MBC
December 2017 - Progression - gonna switch it up
FEB 2018 - Kadcyla 3 cycles ---->progression :(
MAY30th - bronchoscopy, w/foundation1 - her2 enriched
Aug 27, 2018 - start clinical trial ZW25
JAN 2019 - ZW25 seems to be keeping me stable
APRIL 2019 - ONE DOZEN YEARS LIVING METASTATIC
MAY 2019 - progression back on herceptin add xeloda
JUNE 2019 - "6 mos average survival" LMD & CNS new single brain met - one zap during 5 days true beam SBRT to cord met
10/30/19 - stable brain and cord. progression lungs and bones. washing out. applying for ds8201a w nivolumab. hope they take me.
12/27/19 - begin ds8401a w nivolumab. after 2nd cycle nodes melt away. after 3rd cycle chest scan shows Improvement, brain MRI shows improvement, resolved areas & nothing new. switch to plain ENHERTU. after 4th cycle, PETscan shows mostly resolved or improved results. Markers near normal. I'm stunned but grateful.
10/26/20 - June 2021 Tucatinib/xeloda/herceptin - stable ish.
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Old 01-08-2016, 11:55 AM   #7
Donna H
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Posts: 274
Re: Feeling down...

Cancer sucks and the gloomy days of winter certainly dont help any! I recently got a couple adult coloring books (and a few kid ones too). I find listening to my favorite music while coloring is very relaxing and enjoyable. Try to find joy in small things. And turn to this site whenever necessary for all the wonderful words of encouragement, support and advice.
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Old 01-16-2016, 11:54 AM   #8
WayTooYoung
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Location: Toronto
Posts: 64
Re: Feeling down...

Thank you for all your wonderful advice ladies! I have been taking following your recommendations and each day has been getting better mentally and physically for me. Thanks so much!
__________________
Feb/2010-Diagnosed with IDC ER+, PR+, Her2+++(age 28)
Mar 2010- 6 Rounds of FECT (made me sick as a dog)
Jun 2010- Finished chemo
Jul 2010- Mastectomy +12 lymphs (4+)
Oct 2010- Radiation/Begin Herceptin (Her2 was overlooked by my Onco!)
Sep 2011- End of Herceptin
Nov 2011- Recurrence-->Chest Wall, muscle, and possible lymph (ER+, PR-, Her2+++)...WTF!!!???!!!
Feb 2012-Randomized for Clinical Trial
Feb 2012- Begin blind study either TDM1 w/Pertuzumab or TDM1 w/Placebo Pertuzumab
Jan 2013-2nd Recurrence, off TDM1...what next?
Feb 2013-chest wall resection
Feb 2013-Begin Zoladex :(
Apr 2013-Begin Femara
Jul 2013-Oopherectomy + both tubes
Oct 2013-Chest wall recurrence same spot...Dr monitor
Nov 2013-New nodule on chest...restaging...bone/ct clear...continue to monitor
Mar 2014-Surgeon fr/dif hospital confirms lung metasis based on review of CT scan from Nov...Onc recommends Aromasin/Affinitor...
Apr 2014-Start Herceptin+Vinorelbine
Sep 2014-New pain in lower back, MRI confirms metastasis
Oct 2014-SBRT to lungs
Nov 2014-SBRT to lower back
Dec 2014-Restaging confirms two new nodules to lungs and lower spine :(
Jan 2015-Xeloda and Tykerb (good response)
Aug 2015-Xeloda/Tykerb not working...Dr wants to try Taxol/Herceptin combo...problem, Herceptin not covered by OHIP
Sep 2015-Begin Taxol continue Xgeva
Oct 2015-Add Herceptin
Nov 2015-CT stable but MRI shows new mets to spine :(
Jan/Feb 2016-Start Erubulin (Halavan)
May 2016-Progression...Stop Erubulin
June 2016-PMH to explore Clinical Trial options...consideration for Immunotherapy
July 2016-Screening for Trial...Still without treatment, experiencing low appetite, low energy, pain, and rapid wieght loss...cachexia???



You never know how STRONG you really are...until being strong is the only CHOICE you have...
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Old 01-16-2016, 07:24 PM   #9
Kkmom
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Location: 'Burbs of Atlanta, GA
Posts: 168
Re: Feeling down...

Just a thought - I started taking effexor years ago for insomnia and hot flashes. I took it also when I went through chemo and radiation in 2013. During the winter, I always have to increase the dosage - it is like I need a little boost. I take 75 mg. I work for a doctor - MD and also certified in holistic medicine. I mentioned it to him and he suggested increasing my vitamin D. I increased my vitamin d to 6000 IU's and it was not necessary to add the extra effexor. I couldn't believe it - I have not had the usual depression, I typically get during this cold gloomy time of winter.
__________________
[FONT=Tahoma]Dx 12/14/2012, IDC, 2cm, Stage II, Grade 2, 4/5 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+[SIZE=2][COLOR=Blue]
Surgery 12/28/2012 Lumpectomy (Right); Lymph Node Removal: Axillary Lymph Node Dissection (Right)
Chemotherapy 02/06/2013
Herceptin, Carboplatin, Taxotere Started 6 rounds on 02/06/2013 Herceptin
Finished chemo - May 22, 2013
Radiation Therapy 06/12/2013 - 36X External
TM Marker - 13 October, 2013
TM Marker - 15 November, 2013
Annual Mammagram - 3D - Both Breast - CLEAR!!!
Colonscopy - 1st-Clear - November 18, 2013
CT Scan-Results-Clear - November 27, 2013
BC Diagnosis-1 Year - December 14, 2013
TM - holding steady at 15 - December 24, 2014
TM - 24.2 - January 12
Herceptin Treatment - Last One-February 4, 2014!!!
TM - 3.7 - February 4, 2014
MRI & CT - February 21, 2014 - All Clear
NED - and my doctor said - "well, it looks like you are NED - your MRI and CT are clear - Febuary 25, 2014
TM - 18.2 - February 21, 2014
Port Removed - Scheduled for Wed, March 19, 2014
Port Removed - Yeah!!! I feel lighter already!!!
TM - 15.3 - March 25, 2014
Diagnostic 3D Mammogram - Rt Breast - All Clear!!! - Tuesday, May 13, 2014
TM-15.5 - June 25, 2014
Diagnostic 3D Mammogram - Nov. 2014 All Clear!!!
Diagnostic 3D Mammogram-Rt Only-May,2015-All Clear!!!
Diagnostic 3D Mammo-Annual-Nov 2015-Right Clear!!! - Left Breast-found 5 mm CYST. Aspirated - all clear!!
TM - Nov 2015 - 18.2
NED-December, 2015 - 3 Years NED!!!
TM-Feb 2016 - 13.7
TM-June 2016 - 13.3
TM-Oct 2016-10.0
Annual 3D Mammo-Nov, 2016-All Clear!!!

Annual Mammogram - November 2017 - ALL CLEAR. i AM 5 (YES) YEARS OUT!!!

NED - 8 Years Out!! - December, 2020
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Old 01-17-2016, 08:24 AM   #10
scrunchthecat
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Location: Miami, FL
Posts: 19
Re: Feeling down...

Sweetie, the best advice I received since diagnoses was from my PT: Think of "going to the gym" as the icing on the cake. Try to get 30 minutes of exercise every day, preferably first thing in the morning. Her advice changed my life. It's easy to get up early, take a walk or go to the mini-gym in my complex for 30 minutes. It's hard to do what I used to do - go to the gym about 3x per week for 2-3 hours. I feel so much better just working in the 30 minutes.
__________________
June 2015 - Stage IV, HER2+++, HR-. Mets to liver, assorted lymph nodes.
June 2015 - Begin THP
October 2015 - End THP, begin H&P. PET-CT shows resolution of mets to liver & lymph nodes.
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Old 05-28-2016, 04:11 PM   #11
norkdo
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Posts: 367
Re: Feeling down...

I second the emotion for Effexor. During treatment I went up to 300mg. It does work. Fingers and toes crossed for you. Please update us.
__________________
fall 2008: mammo of rt breast worrisome so am asked to redo mammo and have ultrasound of rt breast.I delay it til january 2009 and the results are "no cancer in rt breast. phew."
found plum sized lump in right breast the day before my dad died: April 17th 2011. saw it in mirror, while i was wearing a top, examining my figure after losing 10 lbs on dr. bernstein diet.
diagnosed may 10 2011

mast/lymphectomy: june 7 2011, 5/20 cancerous nodes. stage 3a before radiation oncologist during our first mtg on july 15th says he found cancer on the lymph node of my breast bone. Now stage 3b.
her2+++, EN-, PN-. Rt brst tumors:3 at onset, 4.5 cm was the big one
chemos: 3fec's followed by 3 taxotere, total of 18 wks chemo. sept: halfway thru chemo the mastectomy scar decides to open and ooze pus. (not healed before chemo) eventually with canasten powder sent by friend in ny (illegal in canada) it heals.
radiations:although scheduled to begin 25 january 2012, I am so terrified by it (rads cause other cancers) I don't start til february, miss a bunch, reschedule them all and finally finish 35 rads mid april. reason for 7 extra atop the 28 scheduled is that when i first met my rads oncologist he said he saw a tumor on the lymph node of my breastbone. extra 7 are special kind of beam used for that lymphnode. rads onc tells me nobody ever took so long to do rads so he cannot speak for effectiveness. trials had been done only on consecutive days so......we'll see.....
10 mos of herceptin started 6 wks into chemo. canadian onc says 10 mos is just as effective as the full yr recommended by dr. slamon......so we'll see..completed july 2012.
Sept 18 2012: reconstruction and 3 drains. fails. i wear antibiotic pouch on my job for two months and have 60 consecutive days visiting a nursing centre where they apply burn victims' silver paper and clean the oozing infection daily. silicone leaks out daily. plastic surgeon in caribbean. emergency dept wont remove "his" work. He finally appears and orders me in into an emergency removal of implant. I make him promise no drains and I get my way. No infection as a result. Chest looks like a map of Brazil. Had a perfectly good left breast on Sept 17th but surgeon wanted to "save another woman an operation" ? so he had crashed two operations together on my left breast, foregoing the intermediary operation where you install an expander. the first surgeon a year earlier had flat out refused to waste five hours on his feet taking both boobs. flat out refusal. between the canadian health system saving money and both these asses, I got screwed. who knows when i can next get enough time off work (i work for myself and have no substitute when my husband is on contract) to get boobs again. arrrgh.


I have a blog where I document this trip and vent.
www.nora'scancerblog.blogspot.com . I stopped the blog before radiation. I think the steroids made me more angry and depressed and i just hated reading it anymore
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Old 05-28-2016, 11:22 PM   #12
waterdreamer
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Location: Thousand Oaks, California.
Posts: 199
Re: Feeling down...

You are not alone, this is a tough fight. We just have to take one step at a time. I think everyone has shared some great ideas. For me personally, I take 10 000IU vitamin D - depression isn't a problem for me. And I try to walk as often as possible, even if it is with my Portable Oxygen Concentrator. I set little goals for myself. I suffer more from the stress of raising two young children, so I take 0.25mg Xanax at night and it helps me sleep.

I try to take one day at a time, grateful to be here and positive that I will continue fighting for as long as my heart holds out.

Sending you healing hugs.
Fern
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Breastfeeding when diagnosed with Her2+ May 2008
Oct 2008 Double mastectomy 22/28 lymph nodes positive
Decline chemotherapy (decision I regret)
Nov 2009 Mets to lungs and bones.
Dec 2009 Start Taxotere and Herceptin, T1, T3 heal completely and lungs are clear, T2 and first rib have lytic lesions. First rib becomes sclerotic. Considered stable.
May 2011, Onc calls progression and I cross over from comparison arm of clinical trial to TDM-1
Brain scan in Sept 2011 showed small tumor in right cerebellum, did Novalis radiation.


Feb 2013 < 1cm tumor in left frontal lobe. Did Novalis in March and latest scan shows no sign of brain metastasis.
Aug 2013 did 36th round of TDM-1 Due to TDM-1 side effects, shortness of breath, and difficulty getting my balance when getting out of bed, agreed with my oncologist to stop TDM-1.
Took a six week break, bone scan showed small uptake on left first rib. CT showed hypodensities in liver (too small to biopsy) and small nodule in lungs (mediastinal).
Started Navelbine weekly. Did one round with Herceptin.
Skipped next 2 rounds, due to neutropenia. Next chemo 7th Nov - have had 3 Neupogen shots, so WBC should look better... Did not tolerate Navelbine well.
December 2013 scans show no sign of active cancer.
March 2014 - currently only on Herceptin - brain MRI clear, PET/CT two nodules in right lung show uptake
May 2014 - stop Herceptin.
Sept 22, 2014 Brain MRI clear :) PET/CT Progression in lungs.
Sept 2014, Xeloda, Tykerb and Herceptin.
Nov 2014 - Decide to take a break from all treatment.
May 2015 - Brain met radiated with Novalis
July 2015 - Have progression in right lung.
Sept 2015 - Perjeta and Herceptin alone after a 9 month break from all treatment.
Nov 2015 - Thoracentesis 1500ml removed from right lung.
Dec 2015 - Two tiny 1mm brain mets radiated in right cerebellum.
Feb 2016 - Thoracentesis 2200ml drained from right lung
Feb 2016 - Stopped Perjeta and Herceptin and started back on Kadcyla as I had no previous progression on it. After 1 cycle of Kadcyla markers begin to drop. On second cycle add Keytruda.
March 2016 - Thoracentesis 1650ml drained from right lung.
April 2016 – Thoracentesis 1500 ml drained from right lung.
June 2016 – CT scan shows progression in right lung, as well as moderate pleural effusion requiring Thoracentesis.
June 2016 – Decide to stop Keytruda, and will do chemosensitivity test through Rational Therapeutics. Plan to continue on Kadcyla for next two cycles.
July 2016 - Start weekly Abraxane with Herceptin. WBRT with hippocampal sparing, Taking Namenda. 15 sessions over 3 weeks.
Aug - Dec 2016 - 2 infusions of Navelbine, very hard on my body and still dealing with anasarca (generalized edema) 1 infusion of Havalen
My doctor wants to put me on hospice.
Dec 23rd 2016 - I am granted compassionate use of Neratanib.
May 31st 2017 - still on Neratinib, feeling good.
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