I realize that I haven’t posted an update about how the radiation planning appointment went on Tuesday

By: Robin Harry

I realize that I haven’t posted an update about how the radiation planning appointment went on Tuesday – I’ve just been so tired when I get home from work in the evenings! The chemo fatigue hasn’t quite worn off yet, but it’s getting there!

Anyway, the appointment went fine – there was just a LOT of waiting involved. I got to the radiation planning appointment at around 11am, and then went to get the IV with the tracer just over half an hour later. My blood sugar at the time was 3.9 – almost hypoglycemic (which makes sense given that I had no carbs for about 24 hours at that point, and no food at all since midnight). So the radiation nurse that gave me the IV came by once in a while to check that I hadn’t passed out – and I think the glucose in the tracer helped, even though it was radioactive…

I waited for about half an hour, then met with another radiation therapist who gave me the consent to treatment form to sign, and explained what the rest of the appointment would be like. Funny though, he didn’t really mention waiting!! I then waited for what I’m pretty sure was over 1 1/2 hrs to get into the PET scanner. I just sat there with my crochet, working away, refusing to look at the time because I knew I’d just get really annoyed. By this time I was starving and had a headache. I didn’t get into the scanner till about 1:45pm.

The PET/CT scan itself is a really simple experience. The setup and scan were about 45 minutes long. I had to lie on my back with my hands at my side, and get as comfortable as I possibly could; whatever position I ended up in would be the position I’d have to assume for all of my radiation treatments. The table isn’t really cushioned, it’s just flat and hard – not the most comfortable scan I’ve done. However, given that I had nothing to do but lie still for all that time, I fell asleep for most of it. When the scan was finally done, I got my little dotted tattoos! The tattoos are a reference point for the radiation therapists – that way they always radiate the same place. They’re quite tiny, hardly noticeable, and are in places that I’m pretty sure will ALWAYS be covered by clothing!

So now I wait for the results, to find out how much cancer is left, and thereby know how many radiation treatment sessions I’ll have. My first radiation session is next Tuesday, November 29th, and I see my doc again on that Wednesday. More news to follow then!