Today, Steve and I met my oncologist, Dr. Thomas Ira Sweet. Right away, we were comfortable with him, discussing the basic logistics of Steve and my life together kids, jobs, where we met, what not. Dr. Sweet is funny - truly a great sense of humor. I suppose this will be important as we move into heavier conversations. He has been an oncologist for 20 years and his wife grew up right in San Carlos.
He playfully dispelled some of the misconceptions that we formed after seeing my surgeon. Mainly, that I have had the tumor for three to five years. He says that surgeons have their formulas and that is how they view things. In his experience, he states there was no real way to tell how long a tumor has been in place. (This was later confirmed by members of the support group that I attended at Scripps Polster Breast Care Center.)
Anyway, to get down to the nitty gritty, we learned that my tumor is hormone negative. This is not necessarily bad news, just not exactly as we had hoped, in that it limits the types of chemotherapy that will be effective. Based on this information, we have scheduled my first round of TAC (docetaxel, doxorubicin and cyclophosphamide) chemotherapy. We are still waiting for HER2 test results, which could again alter the type of chemotherapy.
He also prescribed a MUGA test, which will test my heart function for a baseline, (while on chemo, there is a potential risk for heart complications). This test is schedule for Thursday morning. Lastly, I am scheduled for pet scan on Monday. The pet scan will tell if the cancer has metacticized elsewhere in my body, which of course we all know that it has not ***fingers are crossed***.
Chemo starts November 30! Wow. It is all so surreal. I guess I better eat a lot of turkey.