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Name: Vicki, or Victoria, though I do answer to several other things as well, oy you being one of them.
Age: 52 and counting
Nationality: British
Where I live: the New Forest in Hampshire (south central coast of Great Britain)
Work: Administrator at a local Tertiary College (mainly 16 - 19 year olds)
Coming back as: a pampered Teddy Bear

Medical history:

May 2002 - sub-total hysterectomy.  Told by registrar that tests showed I might have cancer.  The marker that showed up is also a marker for breast cancer.  Repeated this to various doctors over the years along with the information that my mother had breast cancer when she was about 54 but no one was interested until ...

August 2007 - realised I had a lump in my left breast.

September 2007 - Diagnosed with Stage II breast cancer and had a left mastectomy on 18 September.

October 207 - Started adjuvant chemo as part of a trial - Epirubicin followed by Xeloda

January 2008 - Finally got the hospital to take an x-ray of right hip November 2007 which was finally viewed by the oncologist on 18 January 2008 and as a consequence admitted from chemo clinic to orthopaedics for a total hip replacement on 22 Januray 2008 due to damage caused by a 4" x 2" metastatic tumour that had almost destroyed the hip.

February 2008 - started the ZICE trial comparing Zoledronic Acid (aka Zometa) an i.v. bone strengthener to Ibandronate, a tablet form.  I drew the Zoledronic Acid and still on this as of July 2012.  Also started Tamoxifen.

July 2008 - x-ray of left knee showed that tumour in femur near the knee had grown slightly.

August 2008 - found Jane Plant's book 'Your Life in Your Hands' in my local library and decided to cut out dairy, red meat and go vegan-ish.

February 2009 - finally had rescan which showed all tumours were improved and the one above left knee was no longer detectable.

April 2009 - second opinion at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London but as I was doing so well on the Plant Programme decided to stay on the Zoledronic Acid but changed to Letrozole (Femara) as the Marsden recommended, because of hysterectomy in 2002.  However declined to start on Taxol with Herceptin although my cancer is HER2+ and ER+.  Change of diet seems to be working so why muck up a good thing with cytotoxic poisons?

December 2011 - Left total hip replacement, nor directly due to cancer.  I was born with a slightly deformed hip which then developed osteoarthritis and got to the point where it was bone on bone articulation as the cartilage was gone.  Result - legs the same length again (took a bit of getting used to that, I can tell you) and BIG drop in pain levels.

February 2012 - infection at LTHR site and spent two weeks on i.v. antibiotics in Poole General Hospital.  Spent another birthday in hospital :O( but got a great view of Poole harbour and read 7 books while I was in there.  Also the staff produced a birthday cake and balloons as a surprise!  PICC line put in due to failed canulas and lack of good veins to access.

March 2012 - infection in PICC line so spent 5 days in Southampton General Hospital on i.v. antibiotics :O(((  Had a CT scan while I was there which showed a possible progression of my cancer.

June 2012 - finally found out that cancer is not progressing after two more scans, and I have even managed to get rid of some kidney stones naturally (ouch).

14 July 2012 - held an Olympic Torch when the flame came to the place where I work.  http://youtu.be/TEPGHDIPmYQ

5 comments:

  1. Well, looks like you've been through a few harrowing experiences. I see you figured out how to add pages with tabs. I'm new to this blogging thing, but happy to share whatever I can - or try to figure it out. I'm happy to meet you and will spend some time reading your blogs. Peace,

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  2. Hi,

    I have a quick question about your blog, would you mind emailing me when you get a chance?

    Thanks,

    Cameron

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  3. So good to meet you Sticki Vicki ... I am new to the Stage iv world, just diagnosed 6 months ago with lesions in pelvis, hip, pubic bone, skull. I did the Taxol/Herceptin for 3 months, and seem to be stable now. Am VERY encouraged by your natural approach, and need to have some real live friends who dare to turn down chemo. I am HER+, not sure about the Estrogen/Prog. Was + in original breast cancer 5 years ago, but not in the biopsy from the hip. Anyway, I'll keep following you! I've attempted at writing about my saga here ( http://shoofoolatte.tumblr.com ) but not sure how good I will be with it. I love your positive approach! Thank you.

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  4. Glad I found you. You have the same nickname I've lived with since childhood. I'm also going through something very similar to you for the past 2 years. You can see my cancer blog here: http://vlynn-livingwithcancer.blogspot.com/
    I will continue to keep up with you and see how you're doing and keep you in my prayers.

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  5. Dear Vicki,

    Another attempt to get in touch with you. We would love to interview you about your experiences with Metastatic Breast Cancer. Our company develops support materials for people with serious conditions, to help them cope with disease and medication. Your input would be very valuable.
    Please let me know if you would be interested in this paid one time interview opportunity: jlens@humancaresystems.com We would love to talk to you.
    Best,
    Jessica

    ReplyDelete