Tuesday, June 1, 2010

One cycle down

Today I start the second cycle of STA-9090.

Cycle one went smoothly: twice a week infusions for three weeks in a roll, followed by a week break. I spoke too early when I said that I did not need any anti-nausea, Maura has to give me Kytril right before I start the treatment. In any case, the toxicity of this drug has been minimal.

The "pain" is that STA-9090 has to be administered intravenously even if you have a port. My double-port was removed last August, but I would have another one placed if the drug company, Syntha, allowed it to be to used for the infusions. My veins "dance away" every time Maura tries to get the line started. After all these years, my veins are still not cooperating!

My appetite has decreased and as a result I look anorexic, weighing 37 kg. The tumors are not popping-out like they do sometimes, I look like I am about to disappear. Ironically, I feel the presence of the tumors like I never did before. They are the cause of my permanent back pain. Until now, I had been among the "lucky" group of cancer patients that could say that cancer did not hurt...I must say that this pain, specially when combined with my chronic gastrointestinal problems, weakens my usual indestructible optimism.

In any case, I will be scanned - on the 21st of June - and we will see if these little monsters are growing. The last two surgeries happened in June... I just hope we can break the yearly cycle.

On a brighter note, I went to the beach this weekend and after several attempts I was able to dive in the beautiful cold cold Atlantic. The freezing water felt really good.


tapioca said...

Elsinha, estamos todos a torcer para que o STA-9090 resulte. Pena não te poder emprestar as minhas veias porque são fáceis de "apanhar". Um beijo do tamanho do mundo.

Got Hope? I Do! said...

Chin up...positive vibes your way Elsa. I really hope this is the drug that will kick the cancer out for good. I think of you often and keep you and your family in my thoughts.

Hope this drug goes easy on you and that you can start to eat better to have all the strength you need.

Unknown said...

Oi Elsinha:
Eu só escrevo de vez em quando mas venho frequentemente ao teu blog.
E escrevo para ter dar uma forcita!
Sabes que tens muita gente a torcer por ti não sabes?
Um beijinho
ana cristina

Elsa D. said...

Ana querida, eu tambem esou sempre a pensar em ti. Tenho saudades tuas!
manda-me o teu email.
Tapioca, empresta-me as tuas veias, os teus bracos e a tua permanente boa disposicao
Marie, we will beat this!
Hugs e beijos

Kathy said...

I am hoping and praying that this works and there will be no surgery for Elsa in 2010.
It's difficult to be optimistic all the time and it is totally OK to take a bad attitude day as long as you don't stay there :)
Sometimes, it feels good!

tapioca said...

não te empresto.... DOU-TE tudo o que poder!
Estás sempre nos meus pensamentos.
Tu és uma VENCEDORA e se no caminho perdeste algumas batalhas a verdade é que não perdeste a guerra!

Unknown said...

Stay strong, stay positive Else. It sounds like this is not as toxic as R7112 so may be more sustainable in the long term.

I am in between scans - no treatment for the time being.