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Cancerbro - My story of fighting brain cancer. I look forward to chatting with you all
Sophistickann Brain Cancer
Posted on Sept. 4, 2018, 12:30 a.m.
My story of fighting brain cancer. I look forward to chatting with you all
Hi everyone! My name is Laura, and I’ve been fighting brain cancer (well,I guess there’s no way to know exactly how long) for approximately 10 months now. I was having headaches for a while, but they always seemed to align with my menstrual cycle, so I just thought that was the reason for the headaches. Anyway, I had a seizure on November 11, 2017. I had bleeding in my brain, was intubated and sedated for 3-4 days. They couldn’t see the tumor bc of swelling and blood. When they decided I would be able to breathe and wake up, my recovery was swift, so they sent me home two days later after an angiogram to rule out a blockage in an artery or vein in my brain. They prescribed me an anti-seizure med and sent me home to follow up 2 months later. At my January appointment, they did an MRI. The doctors I was following up with were the neuro vein and artery specialists, bc cancer wasn’t on the table at that point. So, they weren’t looking for it. They thought I was healing up nicely. I wasnt having any balance or memory issues. Not having a lot of headaches at that time, but I was still having some tiredness. My brain was still a little swollen and healing from the trauma in November. So, my husband and I were stoked. We went to have brunch to celebrate. That’s when I got the call. I recognized the number as the hospital, so I answered. I don’t really remember too much, other than the words “underlying tumor”. This was a Friday, they told me I had an appointment set up for the following Tuesday with the neurooncologist for a consultation. I didn’t go back to work. Breakfast was weird. A few tears were shed, but I tried to keep it together bc, as I told myself, we didn’t really know anything yet. Went to the oncologist. He said he believed it was a tumor either from the brain or from another part of the body. He wanted to get it out ASAP. So, we scheduled the surgery for the following Friday. The surgery went really well, and I was home 3 days later. I shoud’ve mentioned this earlier, but I am 39 years old. They kept telling me, “you’ll be fine. You’re young and healthy.” About a month out of surgery, we found out I had an infection. So, we ended up in the hospital for surgery again. This time to clean out the infection and take out the infected bone flap (which I still haven’t had put back in. Not sure when I will be ready for that). Anyway, I was in the hospital a little longer this time. I had to get a PICC line so that I could do antibiotic infusions for the next 8 weeks. I was so happy when that was over. So, the second surgery was at the end of February. I returned to work sometime early April, and started back full days a week after I returned bc I didn’t have a lot of leave to work with. I’ve had 2 follow up scans since and everything is still looking good. Generally, I feel good on the day to day. I don’t ever forget about it, but I don’t feel the need to talk about it all the time like I did for a while. Anyway, it’s been a pretty crazy year. I’m sure most of you know what I mean. I was diagnosed with anaplastic astrocytoma, stage 3. This was in my right frontal lobe. It took them forever to figure it out. They couldn’t decide if it was that or anaplastic oligodendroglioma. But, finally they finished the pathology and landed on anaplastic astrocytoma. I feel lucky to get to take temodar as opposed to the iv varieties. Does that sound awful? I feel lucky to not have to deal with the awful side effects of some of the other drugs. I did 6 weeks of the temodar along with radiation. I am now doing maintenance chemo for the next year. Anyway, I’m happy to have finally found a support group of sorts. I wanted to get into one for so long but wasn’t able to find one that was active. TBH, I want trying too hard. I have a pretty good familial and friend support group. So, although I have Brain cancer, I feel lucky in a Lot of ways. This has definitely turned into a novel. Congrats for those of you that pushed through. You rock. I look forward to chatting with you all. Thank you for being here. I hope you are all having a good day. Love and light. Laura