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Thread: Fuck Cancer

  1. #901
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    Meltdown just got a little bit closer. Jen has a small fracture on her hip due to cancer coming back. Don't know how much either of us can take.

  2. #902
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    Geez. What's a "small fracture on her hip"? Can she walk? Feeling for you man.

  3. #903
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    Quote Originally Posted by ötzi View Post
    Geez. What's a "small fracture on her hip"? Can she walk? Feeling for you man.
    second that.

    my uncle died yesterday from cancer. although he really invited it from a lifetime of terrible diet and always overweight rather the cancers noted here that are showing up in many cases with no warning; still cancer is a bitch for anyone to get.
    TGR forums cannot handle SkiCougar !

  4. #904
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    Jeez, I hate when this thread bumps up, it’s not good news enough of the time.

    I’m sorry for the turn of events. Hang in there Millsie and Jen. I’m hoping for the best for you.

    Fuck cancer.

  5. #905
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    Fuck cancer............those words don't begin to express the level of ass whooping that disease deserves. I am sorry for each and every one of you going through this shit. I have avoided this thread for a long time because I struggle reading everyone's posts, just hits to close to home on to many levels for me. My best friend has lived with stage 4 lung cancer for the last 7 years, never smoked a day in his life, marathon runner, patroller, I don't get it, diagnosed at 35. He's been struggling hard the last 6 months and especially the last two weeks. Fuck.

  6. #906
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    Checking in unfortunately, FIL diagnosed with bladder cancer. Already had a biopsy and goes in for #2 next week to see if it’s in the walls of the bladder. MRI showed no spreading anywhere else so I guess that’s good news.

    We’re still torn about when to tell our kids (11, 9 & 6)...we’ll see how the second treatment goes and go from there. FIL has a pretty special relationship w/ our 11yo boy, he’s going to be devastated if things don’t go well.


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  7. #907
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    Sorry to hear the bad news, Millsie. Best wishes for the both of you.
    In with the 9.

  8. #908
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    Quote Originally Posted by ötzi View Post
    Geez. What's a "small fracture on her hip"? Can she walk? Feeling for you man.
    Cancer has taken over the hip bone and makes it almost mushy. MRI showed a small bent over fracture according to the report. Seeing the ortho oncologist Thursday to see how we go forward. She is walking with crutches to keep weight off the hip.

  9. #909
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    ^ Shit. Shit, shit, shit, shit.

    I hope there’s a decent outcome here.

  10. #910
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    Millsie, really sorry to hear she is still struggling. Hope the ortho gives you good news this week.

    easyrdr, cancer hits people that don't deserve it and it makes me so mad. Hug your friend and spend as much time as you can with them.

    dtown, we have had that same struggle with our kids and what/how much to tell them. My advice is to base it on how sensitive your kids are, but we always agreed that we would never lie to them about the treatment/disease. Okay to omit details, but don't lie.

    love/hug/vibes/prayers to all...

  11. #911
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    Cancer did not cause the fracture. Will heal on its own. Hip is getting radiation, 10 sessions. However the shit has spread to rib, lymph nodes and pancreas. More nasty chemo on the way I'm afraid. Can't begin to tell you how fucked this shit is.

  12. #912
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    Quote Originally Posted by Millsie1 View Post
    However the shit has spread to rib, lymph nodes and pancreas. More nasty chemo on the way I'm afraid.
    Jesus, I'm so sorry. What are you hoping to get out of the chemo and is it really worth the suffering the chemo will cause? It's crushing to say this, but this is starting to sound like a situation where palliative care is preferable.

  13. #913
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    Millsie, so sorry. Hang in there, man.

    So I've been kinda sitting on this, but maybe a more optimistic thing is called for. On January 18 of this year I went to the dentist for a routine cleaning and checkup feeling fine. The dentist said, "Your teeth and gums are in the best shape I've seen them (I've had gum problems before, not recently though), but did you get poked in the mouth or something? Bite something hard and sharp, like an ice cube or something?" I said no. The he said, "Well then this is of concern."

    Those words sent me down a rabbit hole. He sent me straight to an oral surgeon to get a biopsy done. It came back cancerous. Squamous cell carcinoma of the floor of the mouth. I quit smoking 6 years ago but I smoked for a very long time, and it was right where I would put a cigarette to my mouth, just to the right of center (I'm lefthanded and would hold my smokes in my left hand). Fucking cigarettes. Fucking dumbass for smoking them.

    I scrambled, did some research, found the right guy, Dr. Derrick Lin, chief of head and neck surgery at Mass General and made an appointment. It was a positive experience there, I saw Dr. Lin, and also the head of radiation oncology and the head of medical oncology (i.e. chemo). The radiation guy was great, I liked him a lot. The chemo guy hung around for a while but then he said, "You're not gonna need me." and he left. The radiation guy stayed and explained that the protocol was radiation after the surgery and that it would be 6 weeks of radiation 5 days a week. It was actually positive that the chemo guy left, at least they thought I wouldn't have to go that route. It was also positive that the radiation oncologist said, "In the world of cancer, this is a chip shot", because it was found early and the tumor was small. "Early" and "small" are very big words if you're ever in that situation. It wasn't until later that I kind of realized that chip shots aren't that easy. If only he had said it was a gimme putt!

    But we live about an hour and half from Mass General, and the thought of driving 3 hours a day back and forth, plus getting treatment, sounded pretty arduous. Before I moved back to Massachusetts we lived in Maryland for a long time, and because my wife has her business in Baltimore we had rented an apartment there. The apartment is very nice, but more important it's less than 10 minutes from Hopkins by car. So I scrambled again and did some research and found the right surgeon at Hopkins, actually the chief of head and neck surgery there too, Dr. David Eisele. A pretty stellar guy. We did some telemedicine visits at first (i.e. Zoom, basically), and then traveled to Baltimore for a consult. I saw Dr. Eisele and a radiation oncologist, Dr. Ana Kiess. Big brain on that woman. Very very smart lady but young and kinda hot, too. Which never hurts.

    The protocol was basically the same. Surgery, then 6 weeks of radiation if necessary. I held out some hope on that "if necessary" I had surgery March 4. It kinda wrecked me for a couple weeks but I rallied. My mouth was a mess, but hey, oral cancer. After the surgery they did a bunch of scans and biopsies and whatnot and told me that I needed the radiation. I circled back around to the Mass General guy, Dr. Paul Busse, and he agreed to review my case, and after he looked at all the info he agreed I should have the radiation. I could tell the surgeon Dr. Eisele wasn't entirely on board, he thought he got it all out. But surgeons are vain and of course he thought that. And more importantly he didn't argue with the radiation even though he seemed to think it was overkill.

    So I had the radiation. It wasn't fun. I like to think I'm kinda tough, but it was like getting it by a big rubber hammer once a day. Each day was uncomfortable but tolerable. But the cumulative hammer blows pretty much kicked my ass after about a month. They put me on a ton of gabapentin (2700 mg/day) and gave me a scrip for oxy. They gave me basically a pint bottle of liquid oxy (I didn't even know that existed) and told me to take what I needed and that refills were readily available. I resisted it. They kept asing me how much oxy I was taking and until week 6, the truthful answer was "none" and they were suprised by that. The nurse kept asking, "Not even to go to sleep?" and I said no, none.

    They had made it clear that it would get worse and worse and it definitely did. They also told me that the worst week would be the week after treatment ended, and they were right about that too. Because the tumor had been on the floor of my mouth the main stream of radiation was on on either side of my neck just below the jaw, with more on the right side where the tumor was. Technically, it was 60 Grays on the right, 45 on the left. And 45 down either side of my throat down to my collar bones. And 45 more though my neck from the back.

    60 Grays is kind of a lot. It is a lot. 45 was bad enough, but 60 hurt. The skin was peeling off my neck in sheets. Crazy what it did to my right side. Bad enough on the left, peeling and sore and all, but really bad on the right. With just a few days left to go I finally knuckled under on the oxy. Day 1 I took 5 mg. Nada. Day 2, 10 mg. Not enough. Day 3 I took 20. It was better. Day 3 I took 40 and it was much much better. Anybody who knows me well knows I've had some trouble with substances in my life. And I know it too. I didn't like where it was going so on day 5, I dumped it down the toilet. I guess some fish were happy. Or dead, I dunno. Maybe the toilet wasn't the best idea but I had to get rid of that shit.

    After that it was just kind of a sufferfest for the end of the treatment. "Grim" is the word I kept using. It was fucking grim as shit. And as they said, the next week was even worse. Yikes. I'm not really able to convey it. But after that week it started to get better. The second week after it ended still sucked, but it sucked less. My neck as still a wreck, and my mouth, well, surgery and radiation is not a recipe for a happy mouth. It's still not all the way right, actually. But last night for the first time I was able to put some lemon on the fish I was eating and it didn't send a knife of pain into my brain like it would have before that. And I've gotten a sense of taste back finally. Before that I couldn't taste anything at all. Like, nothing. Food was cardboard at best. And today I've been wearing a t-shirt all day that doesn't have the neck cut out of it, up until now my neck was too raw for that.

    I finished treatment the Friday before Memorial Day and now a month later I'm almost okay. I'm not completely over it but I'm so much better it's crazy. My energy level has been creeping up. Yesterday and today I didn't nap. I've been able to get out in the sun a little bit, with 60 SPF lotion on my neck and wearing a gaiter but in these weird times a gaiter doesn't even look that odd.

    And they're telling me that with the cancer I had, there's a cure rate in the upper 90th percentile range. Like maybe 95% or maybe even better. And it was the top docs at one of the top hospitals in the world, no doubt about that.

    So, if I'm even moderately lucky, I used to have cancer. I dunno, we'll see. I've got years of scans and stuff coming up. But I'm hopeful and optimistic and feeling pretty fucking decent, considering. I feel like I'm coming out of a deep dark tunnel. I didn't even really understand how deep in the tunnel I was, I was just dealing. My brother texted me back when the radiation started, "Head down push forward" and that has been my mantra. And now it's summer and I'm still here and all the shit is over for now at least. FKNA!

  14. #914
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    Good luck, Ice! 40 mg of non-time release oxy is heavy. I itch like fiend, can't sleep and generally feel like shit on 10 mg.

  15. #915
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    It was too nice.

  16. #916
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    Quote Originally Posted by ötzi View Post
    It was too nice.
    Crazy. I'm just not wired for opioids.

  17. #917
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    I'm wired for high doses of them, low doses I don't even feel. I already knew that from when I smashed my pelvis 3 years ago and then the hip replacement last year but I hoped maybe it would be different this time. But, nope.

  18. #918
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    damn ice. i gotta stop sucking on these things after a few beers, just not worth it. Quit chew cold turkey years ago, time for it all to go. glad you seem to be on the mend.

  19. #919
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    Well I mean you could probably fill a decent-sized swimming pool with all the butts I smoked, a few once in a while, I wouldn't worry that much.

  20. #920
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    Dammit iceman crush cancer with a fucking maul!

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    Bunny Don't Surf

    Have you seen a one armed man around here?

  21. #921
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    Damn ice. What a journey. Glad you hit it fast and hard wary on. Good luck with the road forward.

  22. #922
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    Quote Originally Posted by ötzi View Post
    I'm wired for high doses of them, low doses I don't even feel. I already knew that from when I smashed my pelvis 3 years ago and then the hip replacement last year but I hoped maybe it would be different this time. But, nope.
    How long were you in pain after your hip replacement?

    I had mine 3 weeks ago and I'm still low on energy and some pain.

    Sent from my Redmi Note 8 Pro using Tapatalk

  23. #923
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    Damn, iceman, that sucks. Squamous Cell Carcinoma (on his back) is what killed my younger brother. He didn’t have health insurance, or go in for checkups on a regular basis, and he just let it go too long before telling anyone he was in pain. By then, it was too late and spread too far. Got into his bones. Fuck cancer, indeed!

    Hopefully, you’ve caught it in time. Sounds like maybe you did (cross fingers).

  24. #924
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    Goddam, iceman... that sounds harrowing. Good luck on all that shit.

  25. #925
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    Damn Ice.

    I've got to quit. WFH has had my habit worsen.
    Quote Originally Posted by Downbound Train View Post
    And there will come a day when our ancestors look back...........

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