Thursday, September 07, 2006

Treatment Update

Sorry for the belated update. Patty went for a checkup with the surgical oncologist today. He said she was healing well and gave her some information on improving her range of motion. He also said that the burning sensation in her arm was a good sign as it meant the nerves were damaged but not cut in that area. She still will probably never recover feeling in some areas of her upper arm and axilla.

So it looks as if the chemo will start next week on Monday or Thursday. Patty hasn't decided yet which day she wants to start. Brett's birthday is on Monday so I'm not sure if she wants to start on that day. She will be taking a new chemotherapy regimen that just this year begin replacing the gold standard of Adriamyicin/Cytoxan which had been used for decades. Adriamyicin is an effective drug but has a 1% chance of causing severe heart toxicity. The new regimen of Taxotere/Cytoxan demonstrated in clinical trials improvement in disease free survival and overall survival without the heart toxicity associated with Adriamyicin. Additionally, it is much better tolerated than Adriamyicin. The only drawback is an increased risk of neutropenia. Neutropenia is a low white blood cell count which makes the person much more susceptible to infections normally handled by a healthy immune system. Patty will have to be extra careful to not be around anyone with something as simple as the common cold.

Please pray that Patty will tolerate the treatment well and that the treatment will heal her body.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I live in WV. I am Crystal Duggers aunt. I want you to know I will be praying for your family in the weeks to come.
I found a book called Everyone's Guide to Cancer Supportive Care by Ernest H. Rosenbaum, M.D., F.A.C.P. and Isadora Rosenbaum, M.A. very helpful for patients and their families.