Last Wednesday we met with Dr. Gradishar at Northwestern. Long story short, there isn’t anything he can do for me right now with certainty. There are two clinical trials going on right now and there just isn’t enough evidence that they would do much to help me. If he gave me the drug in the trial right now, it would just be throwing a bunch of yucky stuff into my body with no great way to measure the results. It’s definitely an option, just not one we’re sure we want to do.
He is having me send my slides to his pathologist so they can do their own testing and studying of my cancer.
We don’t know at this point if I have cancer or not, but the reason our doctor here in Indiana wanted us to see him is that I have a high risk of recurrence. Ideally, I would have a single-digit chance of recurrence in the next 5 years, but they put me at 20–30%. The biggest risk (as I understand it) is that there were three lymph nodes with live cancer cells when they did my surgery. Those are like a highway to the rest of the body, and we know the chemo didn’t kill what they pulled out. There’s a chance they got it all out, but there’s also a chance it has traveled.
The good news is that I am now a patient of Dr. Gradishar and he’s a breast cancer genius. As soon as a trial, drug or breakthrough comes up, I’m on his books. That’s a great place to be in the cancer community.
I recently had another echo done on my heart and met with my cardiologist on Monday. He said my heart looks good, good enough for my chemo if a trial comes available to me. So that’s good news too.
For now the plan is to finish radiation, do the follow-up scans, and trust God for the best. It’s all in His hands anyway, so that’s not a bad place to be.
Several have asked how I feel—well I don’t feel too great about this. I have a high risk of getting cancer again. Or maybe I still have it. No one knows. And there isn’t a treatment out there to kill it. The best doctors don’t have a next step that they are confident in. I’m not feeling too great.
And this is from Haven, who stayed up way too late to help me type this post: 🙂
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Much love to you all!