Yesterday was a day to visit the oncologist.
We discussed about the CT result, side effects, next regimen, and the possibility of going to Japan.
The doctor’s smile and the word “remission” made me happy again.
If I am in the remission, now I ‘d like to reduce the side effects. I told her that I was interested in changing to T-DM1.
In spite of my expectation of hearing her yes, her answer was a surprise.
“ I don’t know if it is good idea to jump to T-DM1 as you are in the remission. If cancer comes back, T-DM1 is the one you need, but I have to research more to find out if T-DM1 is good for maintenance.”
As buttoning and zippering were getting harder because my fingers bleed even by a little pressure on the fingers, I held off on Tykerb together with Xeloda which was on the off-week.
Since I have heard that T-DM1 had much less side effects than conventional chemo, I asked her opinion again.
“ Yes. Three drugs have more side effects than two, or one so as for maintenance, it is better to reduce the drugs.”
So here are my next options.
1) T-DM1 only
2) Herceptin and Perjeta (approved last June)
3) Herceptin and Xeloda ( I found data that Herceptin & Xeloda is more effective than Tykerb and Xeloda)
While I will continue one more cycle with three drugs, Herceptin, Tykerb, and Xeloda, my oncologist will consult other doctors and find out the best option for my next regimen.
My last question was if I could go to Japan. I haven’t been to Japan since I was diagnosed with cancer in 2010. I couldn’t be there even for my father’s funeral. Now my mother is getting frail and I long to spend the time with my family and friends over there.
The doctor said probably I could, but recommended to buy a travel insurance just in case for an emergency in Japan, and if cancer comes back and caused some pain, shortness of breath, or spreads to the brain, I would have to cancel the trip.
I was glad to hear that it would be possible to go to Japan, but also realized that I still have a bomb, which may explode any time and it is risky to leave from the U.S.
I was wondering to go to Japan in June or September, avoiding scorching summer, but listening to the advice from the doctor made me rethink that probably I should go to Japan sooner while cancer is in remission. My target is now in May.
May God grant my wish and lead me to the right time to go to Japan!