I went to my endocronologist today. Am I spelling that right? Because my spell check keeps highlighting it.
Oh well. Who cares.
May I just begin by saying that people with cancer don't necessarily know all there is to know about their particular form of cancer?
People with cancer don't necessarily know all there is to know about their particular form of cancer. There is so much information being thrown at you all at once, and you become very overwhelmed and have a hard time processing everything. Sometimes, you cannot ask certain questions because your brain just won't go there.
I'm a little confused, but I think I may have learned a lot more about my cancer today.
1.) Because it is in my lymph nodes, it has most likely spread to other areas, as well.
2.) It is highly likely that I will have to have another surgery and a second radioactive iodine treatment after the first one. This is because they will do a full body scan after the first iodine treatment to see where the iodine goes. If it just goes to my neck, all is well; that is where it is supposed to go. If it goes anywhere else, such as the other side of my neck, lungs, bones, etc, they will have to surgically remove that tissue and do another round of radioactive iodine.
3.) If that does not take care of the cancer, I will have to have chemotherapy. That is highly unlikely though. So much so that chemo for thyroid cancer is still an experimental treatment. I would have to go to the Mayo clinic in Rochester if that became necessary.
4.) I finally asked a question that I have not wanted to ask until now.
"Am I going to die?"
The doctor paused for a second and then said, "It is highly unlikely, but yes, there is a chance you could die. Probably one in thirty people die from thyroid cancer. The younger you are, the better the prognosis."
When your daughter has died from something that affects one in a thousand, one in thirty sounds kind of high-risk. Statistics say that you won't be a statistic more than once, though. Good thing for statistics, huh?
They will start my radioactive iodine the week of Labor Day. That is, if my iodine levels are low enough. I have to go on a special low iodine diet starting now. This means I cannot eat fish, iodized salt, chocolate, dairy products, and a host of other things. Well, I guess I'll lose weight out of this whole ordeal after all. Whoo hoo!!
I will also have to go off my thyroid medicine for several days before the radioactive iodine is injected. There are a few things we are trying to figure out regarding what our insurance will and won't cover, and that will determine the exact approach they will take. If my insurance doesn't cover a certain procedure, I will have to go off my medicine for three weeks. If it does cover the procedure, it will only be a few days. I put my vote in for a few days, but we will see if the insurance company takes that into consideration.
He told me not to change any plans or put anything on hold in regard to the distant future. He doesn't foresee that there will be any huge problems. "Huge problems" is a euphamism for death.
Good thing he said that because our adoption case worker did our home study today. Everything went well. She said we can start looking at children's profiles online, and our official file will go online for all the social workers to access by August 10th. This is the official matching process, so once there is a match, we proceed from there. After 2 years, it seems almost too good to be true. I'm not even sure it's really happening yet.
I feel like this is such a sketchy post, but I must be off to school now, so I'll keep you posted in more detail as we go.
I must say, if you've never had cancer, it's a whole new world.