Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Learning More

This was an extremely long day. My doctor was home from her vacation and she was to call me late this afternoon to give me the results from the extra tests that they had run on my pap smear and my biopsy. GOOD NEWS! - No cancer cells on the pap smear. The lab determined that all the cancer cells were from my uterus and that they considered them "well differentiated" - Ok, I had choir practice and didn't have time to look it up, but I can tell you that my friend and hero Bonnie S. was very excited to hear that - Dr. O. said that it indicated SLOW growing cells, not the wildly growing cells that are normally thought of when you think of cancer. She also indicated that this condition should be taken care of by a complete hysterectomy. This will mean surgery - some time in the next month and more recuperation time than the other procedure (I'm sorry, I have a real hard time wrapping my brain around a vaginal hysterectomy...)

I feel blessed that the company I work for values me and will put up with this "monkeyin' around" - thank god for being able to get into my work computer from home!

Dr. O. gave me the phone number for the Cancer Care Alliance in Seattle. It is one of the top places in the US for cancer care. She wants me to go to Seattle because of my weight - yes, I am, politely put, "heavy set" - One of the known risk factors for uterine cancer - another is my age - over 50 (I'm 54) and then there's the high blood pressure (which comes first, the chicken or the egg?) - but I have never had any HRT and haven't had any other cancers. Whew -

I called Seattle - they had just gotten my files (the very nice young woman was like - "Well, you're on top of things") She took some preliminary info - phone numbers, etc. They will look at my files on Thursday and call me on Friday. More waiting time!

I'm mad as hell at the news today that the insurance companies are trying to weasel out of having to pay for mammograms! Mammograms don't prevent breast cancer, but they can save lives by finding breast cancer as early as possible. For example, mammograms have been shown to lower the chance of dying from breast cancer by 35% in women over the age of 50; studies suggest for women between 40 and 50 they may lower the chance of dying from breast cancer by 25–35%.* (from breastcancer.org website) Why are the profits of the insurance companies worth more than those 35% of women? I may have to start getting political about this.

But, it's late and it's time to go crawl into bed beside my dear husband who is being so very supportive. Tomorrow I'll tell you more about "how I got to this place in my health".

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Tom and I are so happy for you!!!! What wonderful news! Well, I mean wonderful in the sense that it isn't spreading/able. We're still both sorry that you're having to through this, but its such good news to find out that everything will be okay! :-) We love you!!!!!!!
--Jordn, Tom, and Alex.