Thursday, October 30, 2014

mixed messages

In a completely unexpected result, my tumor marker decreased to 3.0 from 5.5 in December 2013.  That's a surprise, and good news. 

But still a surprise, because the scan was positive, with "slight uptake" in what the radiologist diagnosed as a calcified node in my mediastinum.  My endo is not complacent about this diagnosis, and I agree: if the node were calcified, there wouldn't be any uptake there.

Plus, and I told her this story, this exact same thing happened when I went to MDA in 2006 when I had my recurrence.  The radiologist read the CT and said "calcified nodes," my surgeon took one look at it and said, "I don't believe it.  That's cancer," and he took them all out.  The surgeon was right.

The endo also completely rejected the thymus gland theory, saying it is highly unlikely for it to start showing up now. I've been dealing with this cancer thing for years, and there has never been any indication of thymus activity before, and it doesn't make sense for it to just show up out of nowhere.

My collarbone was troubling me something fierce on Wednesday (the day of the appointment) so I didn't forget to tell her about it.  She expressed concern, and after doing a search on "bone pain" (because that's what it is), I can see why -- there are basically no benign causes of bone pain, and cancer is one of the leading causes.  I really tried to brush it off as probably scar-tissue related or possibly just my fibromyalgia acting up, but the endo basically told me to stop: You have a serious condition.  We should check this out. 

See, I know it's true, but I like to pretend it's not.

The plan, for now: the endo is consulting with my usual nuclear medicine doctor and seeing what he thinks of the radiologist's diagnosis.   I will probably go for a quick chest x-ray to make sure there's nothing dire going on with the collarbone. (I asked about that -- wouldn't it show up on the scan? Not necessarily, especially since you said it's gotten worse since the scan. Which it has, going from intermittent to constant and sometimes extremely painful. Sigh.)  Re-test in 9 months -- there goes the first 3 weeks of June.  But no definite plans just yet, just waiting to hear from the doctor, again, and get my marching orders.

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