My tongue really hurts; I’m eating a lot of ice. After all, I did bite the shit out of it during my seizure on Sunday night.
48 hours after the whole ordeal began, I have returned home and am plopped in my bed. Four spots, seven spots, five – it seems that every doctor sees a differing number of small brain tumors.
My newly assigned radiation oncologist has recommended that we begin with stereotactic slicing and dicing of the five largest spots. We are using this as the first approach to tackle my little tumors. It’s a lofty goal – getting five spots with this method – but I have little to lose. If it doesn’t work, I’ll have to have whole brain radiation in the next three months. If it does work, I can probably put off whole brain radiation (and the related side effects) for about a year.
Tomorrow I meet with the neurosurgeon who will help guide the “knife” during radiosurgery. By the end of the day I hope to have scheduled the appointments to make my mask and start zapping my spots. The radiation oncologist mentioned that they might be able to do everything in just two sessions. The sooner I can get zapped, the sooner I can get off steroids and anti-seizure medications.
Then I begin chemo (again). Camptosar should extinguish any remaining brain tumor cells. Unfortunately it probably won’t do much to help my lungs. Dr. Roush and I still need to figure out how to handle them. If I had to guess, I’ll start one of the Taxane drugs: Taxol or Taxotere.
So will I lose my hair with stereotactic radiation? Probably not. But there’s a good chance the Taxane drug will take it if Camptosar doesn’t. No, it’s not the end of the world – just something else to which I’ll need to adjust.
Another adjustment? I can’t drive for six months. Evidently the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania doesn’t want to risk me having a seizure while I’m on the road. I don’t blame them, but it still sucks. I have a fun little car that goes very fast. (Seth has promised to relocate my racing seat belt to the passenger side for me.)
Honestly, though, this one is hitting me hard. Perhaps even harder than my initial diagnosis of lung cancer. But all I can do is take it one day at a time and find strength in my family and friends.