Friday, May 8, 2020

New Sites and Sights for Sore Eyes

I know it has been ages. I realize that the pace of my posts has slowed considerably. I guess I like to post when things change, and for quite a while, the Ibrance/Letrozole combination I've been on worked just fine.

Until it didn't. 

The last few cycles have seen a big increase in symptoms. I've had fevers and chills on my week off which you may remember from my days with Kadcyla. They were new aches and pains; nothing major. My energy level didn't rebound and I was even more fatigued than usual.

As you know I've been moving in the middle of all of this. We sold our home in Michigan and moved to Colorado. This a made sense when I was stable.  My new oncologist would be taking the reins on the same team of horses. Unfortunately neither the old nor the new oncologist could overlook how high my antigens were getting. I don't have a chart for you but my most recent measurement is in the 8,000. This would explain the fevers and bone pain. My body thinks these antigens are an attack. 

The new oncologist ordered a new PET scan. And that clinched it. There is progression throughout my bones, new sites and sites on my liver again, and who knows where else. I am set up for an MRI for my brain, and they're going to biopsy my bones again. 

All of this means I need to change my meds. I am due to start Verzenio, another estrogen receptor inhibitor. Coupled with Faslodex, the two should slow down the progression and even banish the cancer for a time. 

Unfortunately, Verzenio is known for some major GI problems. Some patients fail just because of the severity. I am expecting a big change in my lifestyle in order to accommodate the side effects. But you have to do what you have to do and I have to do this.

Regardless, my neutrophil count was too low to begin the Verzenio, so I will get a 2-week break to bring my numbers up. The Faslodex shot went easily. 

So it's an uphill battle again, at least for a while. The best outcome here will be that I adjust to the medications with the right strategies for the GI problems, and that I respond to the treatment well and we beat the little buggers back. That's the goal. 

A four lane roadway wanders down toward tall green and white peaks in the distance.
A view of Rocky Mountain National Park as seen from Estes Park, Colorado 
I am getting excellent care here in Colorado. I don't regret the move, because as soon as we got the news then processed it, we drove up to see this sight. A sight for sore eyes.

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