Thursday, May 26, 2011
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Do you live in NJ or the Philly area ?
Monday, May 23, 2011
Friday, May 20, 2011
This PARP inhibitor is effective in extending the progression-free survival of recurrent patients with an inherited version of a DNA deficiency as well as a non-inherited version. Interesting study. I can't wait to hear more about olaparib. Here is a Med-Page link that explains the study further.
For my fellow survivors and caregivers in NJ:
Please join us next Thursday, May 26, 2011, from 10:30-12 noon for the NJ Annual Retreat on Cancer Research's Public Forum 2011, "Advancing Cancer Survivorship in New Jersey."
This is an exciting opportunity because it will be a diverse panel of researchers, advocates, and providers talking about key survivorship issues, programming and research that are currently ongoing to address the complex needs of cancer survivors. There is a portion of the program dedicated to dialogue between the panelists and the public and it is essential that we have survivors and caregivers as participants in this dialogue.
Register at njcancerretreat.org
You don't want to miss it!!
Please pass the invitation along to colleagues and patients who may be interested.
Every Day is a Blessing
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
I found this quote and instantly thought of all the Women of Teal in my life who have given me hope with their stories. I posted it on my Facebook page but wanted to share it with those women who read my blog.
"The truth is, in order to heal we need to tell our stories and have them witnessed...The story itself becomes a vessel that holds us up, that sustains, that allows us to order our jumbled experiences into meaning.
As I told my stories of fear, awakening, struggle, and transformation and had them received, heard, and validated by other women, I found healing.
I also needed to hear other women's stories in order to see and embrace my own. Sometimes another woman's story becomes a mirror that shows me a self I haven't seen before. When I listen to her tell it, her experience quickens and clarifies my own. Her questions rouse mine. Her conflicts illumine my conflicts. Her resolutions call forth my hope. Her strengths summon my strengths. All of this can happen even when our stories and our lives are very different."
— Sue Monk Kidd (The Dance of the Dissident Daughter: A Woman's Journey from Christian Tradition to the Sacred Feminine)
Every Day is a Blessing!
Sunday, May 15, 2011
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Monday, May 9, 2011
- I wish I had a chance to visit the treatment area before that first infusion.( My surgery, port surgery and chemo were all within 10 days.) Ask for a tour. Ask if you will be in a clinic area or in a private room for your first infusion. Where are the nursing stations? How is the temperature in the room?Is lunch provided if you are there at lunch time?Is there wireless internet service?
- Wear clothing that is comfortable and easily accessible for the treatment. V-Neck shirts if you have a chest port-a-cath. Short sleeve shirts or shirts where the sleeve rolls up easily and won't cut off the circulation in your arm. ( I loved to wear yoga or sweat pants).
- Ask how long your infusion normally takes. My infusions were very long ( 5+ hours) so I used to pack a tote filled with things to keep me busy. You can only watch so much daytime TV. I found magazines better than books since I had a hard time concentrating. I also brought my I-pod to listen to music ( It also helps drown out the noises and buzzing machines.) Bring a cell phone to stay in touch with family- just remember not to talk too loudly so you don't disturb the other patients. Find out if your center provides DVR's or I-pads or if you can bring your own computer.
- My center provided pillows and blankets but I had a favorite fleece blanket I brought each time. Just a bit of home to make me feel more comfortable in the recliner.
- If you are nervous about a particular side-effect such as nausea ask your oncologist to prescribe something to take before you leave for your treatment. If you are really nervous and think you won't sleep the night before ask for a sleep aid or something to calm you down.
- If you don't have a port be sure to drink plenty of fluids the day before your infusion. Those fluids will help plump those veins and make it easier to find a vein. You'll want to drink plenty of fluids after your chemotherapy infusion too.
- In my case I received a sheet which listed each IV drug I was given at each appointment but if you are not going to be given this information make note of each drug the nurse gives you at your first treatment. Don't be afraid to ask what is in each of the IV bags and why you are taking it. Write it down. The nurse should ask you to check the name and date of birth on each IV bag to make sure it is for you.
- You most likely will be given some drugs to take at home after the infusion. Make up a chart with what drugs to take , dosage and when to take. If one is available ask to speak to a pharmacist. Make sure to tell them other drugs - prescription, over-the-counter and vitamins you are taking so that you won't have any drug interactions. Be sure to take the drugs on schedule.
- When you get home be sure to eat small meals frequently and plenty of fluids. If you are experiencing any side-effects like dizziness , nausea , diarrhea or constipation call you doctor and let them know.
- Find some comedy shows to watch, humor does make you feel better and less stressed.