6.19.2007

Hair We Go Again!

I asked about this cough that has been keeping me awake nights since the weekend and my oncologist sent me for a quick x-ray to determine if we should go ahead with today's Herceptin or not. He also prescribed some antibiotics and cough suppressants which I had to buy at a pharmacy near the hospital so that cost won't be included in this month's high medical cost refund system. Fortunately these medications were only 1,300 yen. Anyway, I went on up and got my x-ray after a fairly long wait as it was a busy day at the NCC. Then I made my way back down to Dr. F's office and he brought my fresh images up on his high resolution computer screen as well as results from my last x-ray a few months ago. He said that my coughing is from the cold but that it may be worse than just a cold as the cancer in my lungs is taking up important breathing space and that I could start on Taxol right away or next week (if I wasn't feeling up to it because of the cold) instead of in August. Basically, we were waiting for some symptoms to kick in before bringing in the big artillery and this cold qualifies as a symptom in his book. Being well enough to truck on in to the NCC qualifies as being well enough to get treatment so I opted for starting today.

So, I had to send an e-mail canceling plans to meet a New Yorker BC survivor friend who also lives out here in western Tokyo who is getting daily radiation at another downtown hospital. We'd been planning to head on home together. She was finished by noon, but I was just getting started on my five course deluxe treatment. I took a photo with my mobile phone...



The menu?

176 mg Herceptin in 250 mL saline solution for 1 hour (kick butt)

8 mg Dexart (Steroid) in 50 mL saline solution for 15 minutes (anti nausea)
?? mg Zantac (just noticed this was in the mixture too)

10 mg Chlor-Trimeton (Antihistamine) in 50 mL saline solution for 15 minutes (anti allergic reaction)

160 mg Taxol in 250 mL saline solution 1 hour (kick butt)

and

50 mL saline solution 10 minutes (flush veins)


I asked about anti-nausea meds over the next few days as this is what I've done in the past but as I'll be getting the Taxol weekly, the doses are smaller and the premedication steroids by I.V. are supposedly all that I'll need. So far, so good, I made it home OK on the train a little before 5 p.m. and actually feel better than I did this morning now that I have some cough medicine and anti-biotics. Now I have to look for a few more bandanas, scarves and summer hats to be ready in two weeks if and when the hair starts falling out. A cool look just in time for the heat of summer.

2 comments:

Claire said...

What an amazing array of IVs! With all that doing its stuff, there must be some really serious medical butt-kicking going on.

Hope you don't mind, but I've tagged you for the "Eight Random Things" meme - come over to my blog and take a look...

Mariette Linardatos, The Netherlands said...

Hi Kathy,

I'm sorry to read that you've got to get stronger therapy now. I hope you won't feel so bad and drained. Wishing you all the best for the summer!!!
BIG HUG,

Mariette (from Childrenchat)