HELLO ONE AND ALL!
So Today was a FABULOUS day...It was GRADUATION DAY here in Arizona for me! I can't tell you how excited I am to be done with this phase of treatment. It all started out great, but the longer I did radiation treatment the more it built up in my system the more side effects I began to experience. I started getting severe stomach cramping about 15-30 minutes after treatment every day. As you might imagine this put me down for most of the day. Due to the high does of radiation I was getting, it started to effect various parts of my lower body. My skin became slightly discolored, a dark brownish color (radiation burns). Which I am assured will go away a few weeks after treatment is done. I had a loss of pubic hair, which I now know was from Radiation NOT chemo, or a combination of both. (not always a bad thing ha ha) I have been having some bladder issues for the past 2 weeks or so. On top of a yeast infection I have been fighting for my entire treatment. These are just a few "small side effects". I am SO GLAD RADIATION IS OVER!! :)
That being said some of you are aware of the hard decision I have been faced with and the decisions I must make. With normal HPV caused Cervical Cancer radiation treatment would consist of external radiation treatment (what I just finished) and then Brachytherapy (internal radiation treatment). Since my cancer is NOT HPV caused there isn't many medical studies/research done to prove that Brachytherapy would benefit me or not benefit me. As there is only 2% of women that have my type of cervical caner. The Brachytherapy is a tube that is placed in the vagina, and a robot machine is then attached to the tube by a hose. They then place you in a sealed room by yourself with this robot and deliver small beads of radiation into the tube that in placed inside you. The purpose for this radiation is the treat the top of the vaginal cuff. Which kills the cells in that area so the cancer doesn't come back. The side effect is I am only 27, I would need to use a dilator 3 times a week for 15 minutes a day for the rest of my life. The purpose for that is when you do the Brachytherapy it builds scar tissue on the vaginal walls, which becomes to heavy for the walls to hold up and they collapse. Meaning getting pelvic exams, or having intercourse would become impossible. Its very painful. As you can tell I have a big decision to make. I have my appointment set for next Tuesday to start the Brachytherapy, however I am getting second and third opinions with other doctors and I am doing as much research as possible. I have been in touch with many patients that have had the Brachytherapy done and getting as much information for them as I can. There is no reason to put my body through even more radiation, side effects and long term side effects if it's not absolutely necessary. It is only 3 extra weeks of treatment, one day a week for three weeks. The whole process is about 2-3 hours each day. I just want to make sure it's what's best for me and my body. If I decide against the Brachytherapy then I will just call and cancel my appointment on Tuesday. I don't want to have any regrets later on down the road, but I am just not sold on the fact that having the Brachytherapy is the best decision for me. I will keep you all posted on what my decision is.
As for Chemo, I will start my third round on Monday November 12th. I will be half way done with chemo at this time! I have 6 rounds of chemo total. Chemo has been going well, I have three days of chemo where I feel great the first day, tired and run down the second and third days. By my 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th days I am at my worst. I have been getting muscle aches and slight headaches with chemo. My skin becomes very sensitive to the touch and hurts just to wear clothes. I am very tired and nauseous this whole time. Once this all passes I start feeling back to my normal self. So I have one bad week and two good ones, I can handle that! :)
I am almost done and Cancer FREE!!! I can't wait for my next Graduation day!
I have posted a video of Graduation day today at Radiation above...Please feel free to watch it! :) It's a big accomplishment and I am proud to say I was strong enough! :)
I love you,