My cancer recurred (for the 4 th time) in October 2015 detected at an annual routine appointment at the breast clinic. I was scheduled for an excision on December 4.
After the op the wound refused to heal ( the medics said this was because it was in the area where I had had radiation many years before when I first had cancer.) Each time it came back it was in the same area this time right in the centre of the mastectomy scar. I spent months going to the hospital or my GP for the wound to be dressed etc. For the benefit of anyone who may find themselves in a similar situation it finally healed with the use of 'Haelan tape' at the end of February.
The oncologist I saw put me on Arimidex and the surgeon wanted to redo the operation because the histology showed it wasn't all clear. The surgeon admitted I would probably have the same healing problem Unhappy with all this I sought a second opinion. This oncologist suggested I should take Capecitabine (Xeloda) and he also said his advice would be not to have the surgery in these circumstances.
Capecitabine kept me stable for 18 months. I had some hand and foot syndrome and itchy skin from time to time and sometimes my liver count was elevated and I had to have an extra week off but nothing made life unbearable.Stopped taking these when a scan at the end of 2017 showed slight progression.
I was now being looked after by a different oncologist at my local hospital and she put me on placitaxel intravenous weekly chemo. I started this in Feb 2018 and had 9 weeks by which time I had lost my appetite (and my hair) and 8ibs and was so debilitated
demoralised and fatigued that I knew I had to stop. The scans had shown some shrinkage but the minute I thought I might be losing the will to fight on was when I knew I had to stop this chemo.
I was now put on Eribulin (also intravenous) but two weeks on and 1 week off. This drug is funded by the Cancer drug fund and not the NHS a fact I was unaware of. I tolerated this really wellscans were stable and my oncologist agreed I could take some time off whilst I went on holiday. Then she said we would wait until had the next scan but after this I was told that I could not go back on Eribulin because of the Cancer drug fund rules which said I had taken too long a 'holiday'. I was gutted but learnt long ago that getting upset or cross is counterproductive. By now I had read Jane's book and contacted the COC and was now taking their protocol of drugs.
New treatment was decided Vinorelbine this is in tablet form I was pleased to discover. I continued to take this through 2019 and up to July 2020 when I had a scan showing some progression so now the drugs are to be Abemaciclib/Faslodex but in the last few months I have lost more weight so I need to gain some back before the next treatment starts/ My doctor at the COC says that my disease is relatively stable but my constitution is not and that I should ditch the diet!!