We're halfway done, which means ... more scans!
The first one was called a MUGA scan. It's a cool idea, really. The doctor takes a little bit of your blood through an IV and mixes it with a radioactive substance that binds to your red blood cells. Then about 20 minutes later, he puts the blood back into your vein and takes pictures of your heart. The radioactive blood cells show him how well your heart is working.
Since one of the chemo drugs I get has the potential to damage the heart, they do this scan to make sure my heart is doing all right. Fortunately, it is.
I still don't like needles (and I like IVs even less) but I am getting better about not having too much anxiety about it. This time I had a great student doctor who was working with the nuclear medicine doctor; she talked and listened to me as much as I needed her to and that alleviated much of the anxiety. It worked well. I was glad she was there.
This week I have the next scan - a follow up PET scan. More radioactivity! This time I'm hoping we'll see a smaller and less actively dividing tumor. If we do, that means the chemo is working and I'm winning the battle. Although battle is such a funny word for it... I think of a battle as a highly active fight where I am using the strength of my arm and my healthy body's energy to defeat the enemy with a sword (or something). Battling cancer is mostly just a lot of getting really tired and feeling lousy after you get chemo. The chemo drugs do all the sword fighting. My job is to rest so I can survive despite the loss of the healthy cells that end up being chemo-casualties in the battle.
So... this is one of the only fights that I will win best if I sleep more and do less. :-)