what comes next…

2 weeks ago in my post ‘my struggle with cancer‘, I concluded with the following –

Bottom line is Bladder Cancer spreading to other parts of the body can be difficult to treat and the 5-year survival rate is very low.

While in the hospital, I spoke briefly with my Oncologist Dr. D. and will meet with her again in 2 weeks to discuss the options available in moving forward with my struggle with cancer.

In today’s post, I begin with the following –

It is now almost 5 weeks since my surgery took place.  I have lost 22 lbs. in weight and though overall the recovery is taking place as expected, there are a few issues I am dealing with.  These minor issues cause some discomfort for me, but with medications I am dealing with them.  I continue to take some low dose pain medications and other medications to help me during my recovery.

This past week I had appointments with my Primary Care Manager Dr. W., Urologist Dr. P. and Oncologist Dr. D.

The appointment with Dr. D. resulted in her performing further research into my immediate future.  I could do a wait and see approach; meaning do nothing and every 3 months have tests run to see if the cancer has returned.  Another approach is a possible trial medication for people who have Stage 4 Bladder Cancer.  This trial uses the body’s own immune system to fight any cancer cells that may be present.  The downside is it could also fight the body’s good cells which could result in other issues.  Dr. D. could administer this or it could possibly take place at a center that specializes in cancer treatment.

I meet with Dr. D. again in 2 weeks and this will give her time to see if my insurance will cover this type of treatment.  She will also research to find cancer centers who can administer this type of trial treatment as well.  With this information, it will provide me additional choices to make an informed decision concerning treatment for my cancer.

My appointment with Dr. P. was a follow-up to my surgery and to check in on my recovery.  We also discussed him making a referral to another Oncologist for a 2nd opinion.  Gary and I feel a 2nd opinion is important to ensure I am receiving the best care possible and having all possible options available to me.

The appointment with Dr. W. was to discuss some issues with pain I am experiencing in my lower back.  I had this pain back prior to surgery and thought it was associated with all the other pain I was experiencing immediately prior to surgery.  The pain is constant and is at its worse in the middle of the night to the point, I am unable to move or get out of bed.  We do not believe the pain is associated to the surgery and could be caused from arthritis, or some other issue.  I hope to resolve this pain soon.

More to come in the future weeks concerning what comes next in my journey with cancer.

Recovery continues with aches and pains related to surgery still present, but a little less with each passing day.

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45 thoughts on “what comes next…

  1. Well…Terry I believe we all knew with your faltering appetite you’d lose a few pounds, its hard to eat when nothing appeals to you-I know! I feel optimistic that the cancer has not spread, has not returned, that these aches and pains are all part of your recovery! See… you have some special people to visit in the near future my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Cheryl for the encouraging words. The appetite will get better and some pounds will be put back on soon. I do feel confident about the future and look forward to some totally painless days soon. Thanks for stopping by, I appreciate you. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This journey has not been an easy one, but one thing is for sure, you seem to be in very capable hands. Here’s to a bright and healthy future my friend. 🙂 and may those aches and pains disappear for good. You are in my thoughts and prayers each day. Have a happy day. 🙂 Hugs x

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, here’s to a bright and healthy future – I feel it coming! I have some immediate future unknowns and with each passing day the aches and pains become a little less. My dear friend Lynne, I truly appreciate your thoughts and prayers. Happy Day! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Good morning! Your quite the trooper going through so much discomfort, and I know it is difficult to have constant pain and having to take different medications. I hope that your insurance will authorize a cancer treatment center for you. I only spoke with mine about a second opinion which they do approve at this point. The 23rd of this month is my first visit…a consultation with my Oncologist. That office has a team of Oncologists and surgeons, my own PCP is a surgeon and when he told me his feeling is that I have cancer from the CT scan he read, he also shared with me that he himself had cancer now in remission. Many of my friends are recommending natural methods of treatment…I have received private messages on FB for vitB17, and cannabis oil…please ask your Dr messages… My feeling if either one of those were cure all’s those products would be flying off the shelves world wide. The group of Dr’s there speak about up to date treatments for the various cancers people have. So I am anxious to learn what my current blood tests results are, and I am certain she will order another scan to see if there has been any growth since the one I had in the hospital on the 25th of January. So I will be posting what I learn with my own appointment. I am praying for the best results for you, keep fighting with your positive spirit.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I want to make sure I have all the information and options in front of me in order to make the best decision for my immediate future plans. A second opinion and other resources are good to have for that decision. I wish the best for you in your upcoming appointments and procedures. A similar journey many of us are going through and we can find support amongst each other. I hope you have a happy weekend. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, we should all gather all of the information and options that are available to us so we know what our futures hold for us. At current I really feel pretty good, but I also feel that mass up against my rib cage so careful with bending, reaching in awkward positions. In my simple mind…everything you put into your stomach go throughout your body…I am hoping that the cancer has not spread. One of the things I jotted down to ask my Dr about. Yes, supporting each other is important and it assists us in knowing we are never alone. You have a happy weekend as well…I plan to! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Stay strong . I was in the same position in 2012 4.5 st of weight lose after surgery, couldn’t eat and extreme fatigue. This time around I’m on clinical trial and fingers crossed is keeping it stable. I’m just back from Spain and feel great! A little tired but feeling hope. Keep fighting the fight! Live everyday as if it’s your last. Keep strong!!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. You look so well on the photo (even though the weight loss). Keep the faith Spearfruit! I hope you are researching and investigating successful case studies. A second opinion and/or a third will give you better options and yes, insure for your best care. May God Bless you!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m so sorry to hear about your horrible back pain. It must be frustrating and upsetting to have still it post surgery.
    However, I’m very happy to hear about the excellent care and the future additional opinions that you will be getting. Knowledge is empowering and will help in many ways.
    Blessings for your continued recovery my friend. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. “Bon courage” is the expression in French, to wish someone hope and courage. “Kalon” is from my native Breton tongue, old Celtic word meaning: To conquer fear, tolerate suffering and/ or to brave danger… I am saying this word right now: ” Kalon, kalon, kalon…”. And hope to bring you peace and strenght!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Is it possible that your back pain may indeed be arthritis, made worse by your recent lack of exercise because of the surgery? Is the bed comfy enough in your mobile home? I have spinal arthritis and sometimes wake up in awful pain. A coffee, a pain killer and a walk helps me somewhat. I hope you get the chance to have another vacation soon, if you can sort out the pain. Good luck and much love, K x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kerry, I think most likely it is related to my lack of exercise and physical activity. I usually get out of bed in the middle of the night and sleep a few more hours in a recliner. The change of position helps and during the day the pain lessons. But remember I still am on low dose pain medication. We hope to have a vacation soon, but a couple more months of recovery needs to take place. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. 2nd or 3rd opinions are always a good thing, Terry. Hope you´ll find the best way of further treatment! And I´m so sorry about your back pains and agree that they might be because of your lack of exercise. Hope they´ll lessen as soon as you get back to the beach!

    Liked by 1 person

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