After I experienced complications with my PEG tube, my first chemo session was delayed. I had already met with my Chemo Oncologist so I already knew that I would be given high-dose Cisplatin, and I knew what the possible side-effects would be. I also knew that the procedure would take six hours at least. I knew that I would have three chemo sessions and the dates that they were scheduled for, and that it was important that I attempt to make all of my chemo appointments. The only thing I knew nothing about was the actual procedure itself. Continue reading My First Chemo Session
Well what a long day the first day was at Sunnybrook. We left the house at 6:00 am and didn’t get home until 7:30 pm. It was the first time meeting my oncology team at the Odette Cancer Centre in Sunnybrook Hospital. Continue reading Meeting the Oncology team at Sunnybrook
Radiation preplanning, also called simulation, is an important step that’s executed prior to starting actual cancer treatments. So why exactly am I showing a picture of spaghetti? Continue reading Radiation preplanning for throat cancer
I wish I knew what questions to ask before starting cancer treatment for my throat. It’s a given that chemotherapy and/or radiation treatments are medical procedures that are meant to deal a bad blow to cancer cells, but they may also pose a risk to healthy tissue as well. I wish I knew then what I know now about side effects. I might not have been able to do anything differently, but at least I’d know what to expect. Continue reading Questions to ask before you start cancer treatment
What fuels the fire that gives you the strength to fight your cancer? I needed to really believe that I was going to get well and so I had to find a way to find internal strength and ignite my cancer-fighting fire.
**Warning: this post contains an image with profanity. I found it inspirational but if you are offended by such things, then proceed at your own risk. Continue reading Fuel the fire to fight cancer!
In addition to the organizational tips I previously posted, there are more ways to get prepared to help make you and your caregivers’ lives a little easier. For starters, you will need to focus on getting well, getting rest, and getting to your appointments on time and let the household chores take a back seat (even the get well cards will tell you this.) Making some arrangements to take care of the household stuff and doing a little homework before treatment starts will take some of the stress away. Continue reading More ways to get prepared before you start treatments
Once I’d been diagnosed with throat cancer and treatments were about to start, a good friend of mine passed along a valuable piece of advice to us: get organized before treatment starts.
I’m very glad we listened to her. There were a great deal of appointments to keep track of and medications that needed to be taken on various schedules. I had no idea of just how much of both there would be. Neither one of us was in the proper frame of mind to remember all that needed to be done, so we used common tools to help us stay on top of everything. Continue reading Get organized before you begin your treatments!
We’ve all been told about the importance of getting a second opinion (or even a third). I’ve never felt I needed to before but now I will. Thanks to an unlikely chain of events, my cancer was eventually detected but not before some mistakes were made along the way.
When people learned of my cancer diagnosis, they were naturally curious and wanted to know more. The one question I was asked most frequently was “When did I suspect throat cancer and what were my symptoms?”
The truth of it is, cancer was the last thing I suspected, at least at first.