On Monday, the 6ᵗʰ, I saw My oncologist to get my PET scan results. I was not expecting good results because, for the last month, I have noticed a bump in my neck. When I turn my head, it pulls on that area, and it has been itching. As I suspected, I do have a tumor in my neck on the left side that is 3/4 of an inch.
Unfortunately, there was much more to my scan because it showed that the cancer had spread. The original tumors in the tissue above my 8ᵗʰ rib and a small one in my neck are stabilized, but I have five new tumors that were visible on my scan.
One of the new tumors is the one I mentioned above, the one in my neck. The other four tumors are in my bones, at T8 & T9 in my spine, in my tailbone, and in my right shoulder blade. I had no idea that I had four tumors in my bones. I am not in any pain or discomfort, so I was shocked to hear my oncologist tell me about them. He made sure to tell me that they were small, but that gave me little comfort.
So, with all of this going on, my oncologist took me off of iBrance & Faslodex because they aren’t working anymore. It is not unusual for cancer to adapt and make the medication ineffective, especially when the cancer is aggressive like mine has been. One positive that I am taking away from these changes is that I won’t have to endure the Faslodex injections anymore. The injections were painful and could sometimes give me bad headaches, so I won’t be missing them.
Last Wednesday, I started taking my new meds. I am on a chemo medication called Afinitor, and the new inhibitor is called Exemestane. They are both oral medications that I take every day, once a day. As usual, both medications came with information sheets. Afinitor has six pages of side effects and instructions for taking it with precautions for when I am in public and at home.
Afinitor is very similar to when I went through infusions because I need to wash my hands often and flush any toilet I use twice to keep others and myself safe. Unless I start having serious side effects, I am free to live my life as usual, just as I did on my previous meds. My oncologist did not anticipate me having any trouble adjusting to the new medications and reminded me to call if I needed anything.
My next PET scan will be at the end of January or early February. I will update again after my next oncology appointment.
As always, thanks for coming!