Ruth's musings

I have been dealing with breast cancer for a while, and have been sharing my journey with friends, family, and prayer partners. This blog brings all my updates together in one place, and leaves me free to muse on other parts of my life. Thanks for visiting!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Ruth Update, February 26, 2008

Dear Friends, Relatives, and Prayer Partners,
I just heard from my doctor via e-mail.  She had spoken to the pathologist who examined my liver biopsy and confirmed malignancy in one of the six samples that were presented to him.  This is not news.  Unfortunately, there was not enough malignant tissue to do the test for the HER 2 receptors, which would tell if I could use the drug Herceptin.  (The specific test she mentioned was:  ER , PR & HER 2 NEU.  I just Googled that, and just the titles of the hits gave me the willies.  It is late, and I need to talk with my husband.  I am not going there right now.)
I have not spoken with my oncologist yet, and I just got the e-mail, but the way I see it, my choices are:
1)  Have another liver biopsy.  According to the e-mail from my doctor, the pathologist believes that one could also be hit or miss, so we could be in the same position we are in right now.
2)  Go with the chemotherapy that we would have gone with anyway if the test came out negative for HER2 receptors.  These are the toxic kinds of chemo, similar to what I have already had, that put me in the "No Evidence of Disease" category.  My oncologist assures me that we could do the test another time down the road, when we can get another sample that might be better, to try the Herceptin then.  I was hoping for the Herceptin now, as it is less toxic, and one doesn't lose one's hair.  One also doesn't spend two or three days every three weeks curled up in bed, whimpering.
3)  Talk with my oncologist and my husband and see if there are any other options.
Of course, any treatment plan I take includes the prayers of my praying friends, and the good wishes of those who don't pray.
The option of doing nothing is not an option.  Haul out the big guns and let's start shooting.  I hate this waiting around stuff.
I need to go talk to Paul.
I posted a little something more lighthearted on my blog today, just in case you missed it.
Get your mammograms.  Do your self-exams.


  • At 4:52 AM, Anonymous Sarah HB said…

    Good luck with figuring the next step.

    Hugs & prayers.

  • At 8:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    You're front and center in my thoughts, dear.



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