Monday, 21 October 2013

To check or not to check? oncologist has thrown me out. He looked at the CT and told his secretary to tell me to come for a check up in a few months, or in his words, "Whenever you're in the country again." In other words, piss off. I'm a little harder than that to get rid of, I've made an appointment with him tomorrow ( actually it should have been Wednesday, neatly fixed just before the appointment with Prof. Shpitz, but he is going fishing on Wednesday apparently, so I got rescheduled to Tuesday, annoying but not enough to get me off his trail!). I have a few questions to ask him, but the most important one is whether I really should bother with three month check ups at all.
The thing is; ok, I know my chances are about 50/50 of the cancer coming back. If it does, will early detection really change anything, or will it just mean starting a most probably futile course of chemo which will waste the rest of the time I have? Basically, which sounds better, snorkelling round the Thai islands for as long as possible, or sitting in a chemo armchair for, granted, maybe twice as long? I know which I would choose, and unless Dr. Mishaeli gives me a very good reason to change my mind, I will. I just need to be sure the statistics I have managed to find are right; it is hard to find statistics of this kind but what I have found seems to say, 'Only 30% of recurrent rectal cancer can be treated surgically. Of those cases only 30% are successfully treated. Overall, only 1% of cases are treated more successfully because of early detection of recurrence.If you have a recurrence you have about the same chance of surviving it as you do of being crowned Ms. World. Run, run fast and don't look back.'
On Wednesday I will find out when I get the reversal of the ileostomy, hopefully. If there is a long wait for it we plan to fly out to Chasamba and come back, but I hope it will be soon. I did blood tests this morning, hoping to be able to show Prof. Shpitz that my counts are back to normal, but I've just looked at the results and they aren't wonderful. My liver is nearly back to normal, that's the good side, but I am still anemic and my white blood cells are still low. I can't understand it; I feel so much better, I walked to the clinic and felt good, no huffing and puffing at all. I have got the colour back in my face too. Weird. So I guess grabbing any spare reversal-operation slot available this week is out?

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