Late Night Phone Calls

My oncologist is seriously the best human being in the universe.

I was at my friends last night with my hands covered in empanada dough as I was helping her roll out empanadas (she was a little frustrated with some very sticky dough, so I stepped in to try to figure it out). My phone started to ring, I saw the number and knew it was a line at my hospital and my friend grabbed it and answered it “Mandi’s phone!”

Mike put the phone to my ear when Dr. Buys told me it was her (my heart did a flip flop because I expected to wait until Monday to hear anything). She started to explain that she had my results. I was in a loud kitchen full of empanada groupies I washed my hands and stepped out to the living room to take the call because I couldn’t hear. She told me the news was good and that she didn’t want me stressed out all weekend (it is kind of like she knows me! Haha – which she does. I believe anxiety is written on my charts somewhere).

I do have a new tumor on T12. That means I have 7 vertebrae with tumors in them (if they are all still there, I need to get my hands on the report, but I didn’t get news that any were gone). They are all in my thoracic and lumbar spine. T7 was the biggest one, the one that they biopsied and the one that recently has been giving me the most trouble. Turns out I have what looks like a small fracture on it (it isn’t squished like we discussed). The fracture appears to have been where they biopsied – so that group of yahoos is the gift that keeps on giving. This could be the cause of my upper back grumpiness? My T7 went from 12 on the glowing/uptake scale to a 5, which means there is a lot less cancer cell activity in there.

Someone in my metastatic cancer group told me that they get pain when their tumors are dying. I like this theory!

My hip pain is a figment of my imagination. Well, not really, it hurts, but it is close to my surgical area and possibly I aggravated something in there.

The breast cancer tumors in my lymph nodes appear to have decreased in size a bit. I don’t think they were in the line of radiation, so I can only figure that decreasing my estrogen from surgery may have had an impact. This may mean that Femara may have an even bigger impact.

The only mild concerning part is my tumor markers climbed from 58ish in September to 70ish in November and are now 80ish in December.

For now we are going to give Femara/Letrazole a chance to do its thing over the next 4-6 weeks, keep an eye on everything and decide from there.

We are super happy with this news! 🙂


My friends finished the empanadas while I was on the phone. Photo credit, Michelle Ashby.


Author: Mandi

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