Cancer Journey/ HEALTH

Breast Cancer Update-Scan Results

{below is an update, the 2 most recent journals from my Caring Bridge site}

MONDAY, APRIL 18, 2011 9:00 PM, CDT

Today was scan day.  

I had to drink 2 15 oz. bottles of barium.  
I remember drinking the same berry flavored barium way back in August when this battle started.  I sipped and gagged and complained and eyes watered.
Not this time. 
 I guzzled that baby, it went down smooooooth.  I buckled down and got ‘er done and felt pretty darn proud when I was done.  I think I’ve toughened up a bit in the last 8 months!:) 
But, just when I start feeling tough, I am humbled again.  
Due to an earlier allergic reaction to bone scan contrast, I had an I.V. inserted and Benedryl pushed, just to be safe.  The minute Benedryl entered my system, I reacted. Lungs tightened, heart raced, nausea.  I shook like a leaf!  I flushed, and was lightheaded–I thought I would faint. The very medicine that was supposed to keep me from reacting to the contrast caused this reaction!   This reaction happened in the waiting room in front of others– very humbling.  I am not sure why the nurse brought the injections into the waiting room instead of taking me back to a room, but I sure would have preferred a bit of privacy.
The nurse seemed baffled at my reaction and asked if I had anxiety.  That TICKED ME OFF! To me, it was clear I was having an immediate reaction to whatever she had just pushed into my IV.  I did a google search on Benedryl reactions and read that if it is pushed too hard/fast without diluting, that some people can have serious reactions, with symptoms similar to what I was having. I even read a nurses thread where a nurse talked about 2 different patients of hers coding due to a Benedryl reaction!  Whoa. 
We all know I can get a bit anxious about things, but that is NOT what was happening at that moment. Grrrr.
I laid down for awhile and was monitored.  I was a little annoyed because this put lunch off an hour and I WAS HUNGRY!!  Barium for breakfast just didn’t cut it for me:)
The rest of the day was fine.  My heart raced a bit when they pushed the contrast dye in, but it slowed down quickly so I didn’t worry about it too much, I was really too sleepy to worry thanks to the Benedryl! No rash so far, last time it showed up in the evening. 
My CAT scan was in the morning, when all this craziness happened.  It is a scan that takes sliced images, and they scanned from my chin to my hips.  
My  mom was with me and we went to lunch, then arrived back at the hospital in time for my 2:00 bone scan.  My day got much better once I was able to eat 😛
The nurse asked if I had any sore areas of bone, and I told her about my scapula pain.  She took 2 extra pics of that area, and said “I’m not a doctor, but comparing that scapula area to your last scan, they look the same”  I was so happy and relieved to hear that!  I’ve tried not to worry about this soreness, but I have…  
Toward the end of my scans, I turned to my mom and said “I have no groceries in the house and no plans for dinner”  She suggested I make breakfast food for dinner–eggs and toast or french toast.   Minutes later, my phone rings and it is my friend, Karma.  She is a three time breast cancer survivor who attends that church I do and has become such a sweet friend to me the last few months.  She said “I made extra Chicken Divan for your family, can I bring it around 5:30?”  I got off the phone and my mom and I laughed out loud at the goodness of God.  I didn’t have to make breakfast for dinner, although it was a good idea..:P
That was cool enough, but I later saw another reason why God provided dinner for us tonight.  
It was about the time I usually would start making dinner, and I got a phone call from a lady whom I have talked to but had never met.  I had heard about this lady from my Avery girl.  She told me there was a girl in her class whose mommy also had breast cancer.  I called this woman and told her I would love to meet her.  That was weeks ago. She called me today and said, “Can I meet you?  Like, now?”  🙂  I was not in the middle of dinner- makin’-craziness like I  usually would have been.  I was able to say “of course, I can’t wait to meet you, come on over.”  We sat and talked as Karma’s Chicken Divan warmed in my oven.  It was a wonderful conversation–this woman is amazing and I am SO BLESSED to know her!!

Romans 8:28

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.


TUESDAY, APRIL 19, 2011 6:13 PM, CDT
I called my oncologist office 5 minutes to closing time.  I WAS NOT going to wait another day for scan results!

I am glad I did, because I learned my doctor is out of town until Monday!

I talked to a nurse, and she read my scan results, but kept telling me that Dr. Midathada could explain them further and answer any of my questions.

Here is what she said:

 CAT scan:
was NEGATIVE for signs of metastatic disease 🙂

It does show a dominate ovarian cyst, this is one we knew about as it had showed itself back in September, but there is growth.  The radiologist suggests that I have an pelvic ultrasound done to check it out.  Ovarian cycts are rarely cancer, but with my history she was sure my doc would want to check it out.  That’s kinda poopy.:(

Bone Scan:

There was still uptake in my rib area.  They called it “degenerative changes” on the report, and it sounds like it has progressed some? The nurse said they will want to do a bone density check on me.
When I asked her if that could be cancer related or a sign of cancer, she said she will have the doctor call me to answer my questions. Hmmm.


I am very, very thankful the scans didn’t light up everywhere showing cancer spread.  That is AWESOME.  My liver looks good, my kidneys look good, my lymph nodes look good, my chest and breast look goooooood:) Ha.  I am going to celebrate that!!!


sounds like my life of doctor appointments will continue for awhile.
Oh well, what is a few more…I’m not sure what I would do with myself if my life was devoid of all doctor appointments…

My main prayer request is that we could get answers quickly, and all this appointment craziness will be over with by the time my girls get out of school for the summer.

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  • The Pennington Point
    April 21, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    Oh Amy, that Benadryl story is awful! It makes it worse that the nurse acted like it was your fault….like YOU need to calm down. Thanks for sharing what you now about your results. Following you on this journey has been eye opening for me and I am so grateful. Lisa~

  • Kat
    April 21, 2011 at 11:15 am

    You are such a strong and amazing woman. Thanks so much for opening up and sharing your journey.

  • Janel
    April 21, 2011 at 11:57 am

    This report sound very promising! As for the bone density test – EASIEST test EVER! Serioulsy! you don’t even have to get undressed, no shots, its easier than an x-ray!!

    Go in, lay down on a super comfortable table (seriously – its totally padded) – and about 10 seconds later, you are done!

    Keep us updated! I will keep you in my prayers!

  • Heather
    April 21, 2011 at 2:55 am

    Wow, your attitude and beautiful perspective in all of this is what astounds me. You are an example… even though I’m sure you have your days when you struggle to have joy. I’m rejoicing with you in the news that you do have!
    Praise God!

  • Corn in my Coffee-Pot
    April 21, 2011 at 2:52 am

    I’m so glad to read this report. You sound like your doing well. Your spirits are up…and you’re trusting God. Even in the little things (ie: dinner for the family…lol)
    That’s so important. It is wonderful to see God bringing people into your life. People to minister to you and You to minister to them…I’m sure the woman you spoke of is feeling just as blessed to know you! You are a wonderful person—
    I feel your aggravation about the Benedryl reaction! Don’t you just want to shout at people sometimes??? Like after all this time you don’t know your own body… (instead of anxiety…) Well, for whatever reason it happened and may have been for a reason only God knows. I know you take those moments in stride too.
    God bless you this Resurrection Week… to you and your family.
    I love reading your reports—
    Take care.

  • Laurie
    April 21, 2011 at 1:30 am

    Amy! Wow! You have cleared yet more hurdles!!! I’m so sorry about your allergic reaction. That must’ve been so awful. I was overdosed on magnesium sulfate during my 3rd preg and it was super scary and I thought I was just about over. I don’t like anyone looking at me in those states either. And it took some doing before the nurses in my case understood we had a serious problem. So freakin frustrating. As if you haven’t dealth with enough, right?! Anyhow, it sounds like you are getting some great progress results and I am so super thankful to hear it! I know you can deal with this journey as it continues. You are so strong and so faithful in leaning on our God. And you look just beautiful! Thanks, as always, for sharing your experience and life with us. Love ya!

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