Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Done With Chemo

Three weeks ago today, I had the last of four chemo treatments. There will be no more.

When I went to see the oncologist two days ago, I had already made up my mind to quit after four and do no more of the original planned six. I was so confident with my decision that I made a lunch date with Tucson friends the day of the chemo (today).

The appointment with the doc was late afternoon to make sure there was time enough for what was going to be a long conversation. Just shy of an hour we talked. I began by sharing my miserable living with chemo.

After additional talk about the side effects, I asked if there might be some data to indicate how long before relapse after four treatments versus six. He headed off to his office and apparently found some information. However, there was nothing about four versus six. He did find there was no difference between six and eight, but there was no mention of four.

We talked more about any future chemo. I asked about delaying the next chemo for two weeks so I could recover. I don't remember if he really answered that. It may have been at that time, that he said that considering the local nature of the tumor with no other indication on the PET scan and other tests he was okay with my decision to stop chemo.

The decision to stop was followed by discussion about a future if there were a relapse of cancer. If there were a relapse, the doc said it would be a different chemo treatment. Fortunately, that is an issue I will address when -- or if -- there is a relapse.

Closing up the appointment, he said the next step was to call the doctor for radiation therapy. As he walked me down the hallway to checkout, he said that the radiation would mean there would be no more children. I responded that wouldn't be an issue since I had been cut forty years ago. With a few more yucks I headed to checkout.

There was a mob of people at the checkout including one of the nurses who I have seen there on many of the visits for blood draws and infusions. After the conversation with the doc, my smile must have bigger than usual. The nurse asked how I was doing and about the next treatment. I spoke of the neuropathy and added that there would be no more chemo. After chatting briefly she wished me well and headed back to her responsibilities.

Now it is a matter of healing the body to what it might have been before I started the chemo. I am looking forward to food tasting good once again. The digestive tract will heal. The hair will start growing back. I will start shaving again. Soon there will be hair growing from the ears. The wrinkles caused by the chemo will take much longer to soften. There are good days ahead.

Done with chemo. No complaints. Life is good.


  1. Good news, Lloyd. It sounds like you have a really good doctor, too. I'm glad your spirits are lifted and you can celebrate tonight. Maybe take a desert hike tomorrow.

  2. you need to eat healthy plant if it's available. there is a lot research that supports a whole plant diet for healing and maintaining a healthy body. I'm glad the chemo is over...that isn't a healthy thing for any body....

  3. Hope your choice to discontinue the chemo is the correct one for you. I've often wondered if the damage done by the treatment was justified. Take care of yourself, and get whole and well soon.

  4. It sounds like you made a good decision. I'm so sorry you had such a rough time with the chemo, and maybe that was enough to prevent any recurrences. Now it's all about getting back to normal. That will be a lot more fun for you - good food, good hikes, feeling much better all around. :)

  5. I wish you a speedy recovery and no relapses. It was great seeing you in Tucson. We are back home trying to find space for our new mineral specimens.

  6. It sounds like the best decision for you, all things considered. Hope the side effects you've experienced fade away quickly.

  7. Please know I am praying for you. Blessings, Lynn

  8. I'm catching up on my blog reading. Glad to hear you are with chemo and I'm looking forward to hearing about your activities in the future.

  9. Here's hoping you're feeling better soon. It sounds like you've made a rational, informed decision. Maybe a hot fudge sundae would be just the thing.

  10. Be well, hope you're feeling better soon!


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