We got the news this week that my chemo is still working. My PET/CT scan was clean, which is remarkable. There are no signs of malignancies in my body for the second scan in a row. When my oncologist told me the news, I sobbed with relief. Because no matter how much yoga I do, these scans still put me on edge.
The last time I had back-to-back clean scans, I was ending six grueling months of super-toxic (technical term) Taxotere. My fingernails were barely holding on, and I'd said good-bye to my eyelashes and eyebrows months before. But a clean scan meant a break from chemo, and I'd been certain I'd see a long-term remission on maintenance drugs alone.
Just four months later, though, cancer proved that line of thinking wrong. In May 2013, I started TDM-1/Kadcyla, a targeted treatment that's been called the smart bomb of chemo. Every new treatment brings anxiety and trepidation. How would the cancer respond? Would the side effects be tolerable? And, yes: would I lose my hair again?
I'd heard rumors of women being able to stay on this particular drug for years at a time, but didn't quite believe it could happen. Cautiously, I'm starting to feel optimistic this could be me, too. The side effects are tolerable (even if my chemo brain is out of control). I've kept my hair. And most importantly, this drug is working.
Cheers to that.