30th January 2021
As they say - 'you're never too old to learn'.
And it's true. I’ve learned a new word: Scanxiety - which describes ‘the apprehension felt by people with cancer as they wait for their next scan’.
This came about by doing too much of what I shouldn’t - which is hunting around the interweb trying to find information, about things of which only give me an incomplete picture as to what's likely to happen.
Let me back up a bit. My first full scan, post treatment was done last September – and that was a very anxious wait to find out the results.
Good and bad was the outcome of that scan. Good that the throat tumour has diminished – bad that metastatic (secondary cancer) tumours had been found in a couple of locations.
They weren’t deemed ready for treatment then, but another scan was scheduled for January 2021 to see if there’s any further development.
And there is.
No matter that I try and not worry about what I can’t influence, but waiting for that next scan and the outcome, is never ever far from my thoughts. Every day.
That is definitely Scanxiety.
And so I was ever so glad to have my January PET/CT scan and the subsequent appointment to discuss the results. The scan indicates a third tumour showing in my right lung and the original two in the same lung are still developing.
It wasn’t a great shock and I’m now back under the care of my oncologist – the excellent Dr Warren Grant. He phoned me the other day to get my thoughts and to update me on his thinking.
As ever with me, it’s not yet clear-cut. I will be starting treatment again, but right now it’s not definite when, or with what. By this I mean the choice will be either Chemotherapy or the much newer Immunotherapy treatment.
This is another new word for me. Immunotherapy ' which uses substances to stimulate my own body immune system to fight the cancer'. I suppose it's too much to wish these will be ganja-type substances, but one can hope - eh?
The decision depends partly on whether my cancer would be receptive to Immunotherapy and also on the overall effect of how my body will respond to either of the drugs.
That – and the schedule for treatment will become clearer on my next appointment with Dr Grant in mid-February.
But for now, I’ll end on a lighter note because I just received my first Covid vaccination jab. I’m in ‘group 4’ because of my condition and treatments.
No surprise that Gloucestershire NHS have it well sorted. Very quick and slick at the vaccination centre and no pain either.
Although I’m sure I heard the nurse whisper under her breath that I’d just feel a little prick.
Not a new experience for Wozzer… 😊