Saturday, August 20, 2016

5081 Lots of little stuff

 Saturday, August 20, 2016

"The big thieves hang the little ones."
-- Czech Proverb -- 


The breast.  I had hoped that after the surgery and lab reports I'd have a better idea of what's going to happen.


I got a tiny bit of additional info, and it's not the best.  The stage is still good, at T2aN0M0, and it's stage 2a instead of 1 only because it's .2 cm too large in one of three measurements to qualify for T1, and there's a lot of other good indicators.  So that's good.  However, there's a bunch of stuff they look at after it's removed to judge the grade of the tumor - how active it is, how "deformed" the cells are and so on, and I score 8 out of 8.  It's a very nasty tumor, high grade, as high as they get.  Not so good - or so I thought.

So, last week I had my first visit with the oncologist.  The first thing he said was, "Congratulations!   You are now cancer-free!"  

I gave him a look that said, "Yeah, sure, so why am I sitting here?  Let's not play that game, ok?"

I found out nothing useful.  I had assumed that cells would be sent out immediately after the surgery for an Oncotype DX test.  They check the genetic makeup of the cells and it gives all kinds of information, like the likelihood of recurrence, susceptibility to various treatments, and so on.  In fact, most oncologists no longer base treatment on the stage and grade any more.  Oncotype DX, although expensive and not covered by some insurance, is now considered the standard of care.

Anyway, it was NOT ordered automatically, and he had just received my files, and just ordered it (duh?) so it will be another week or two or three before we get the results and I find out whether I'll need hormonal therapy and/or chemotherapy.  In the meantime, I do still have to have radiation (Grrrr! Because I had the lumpectomy instead of the mastectomy I wanted.)

No one has contacted me yet about starting the radiation.  And I'm still having some kind of nasty reaction to the blue dye.  I don't know if that will delay stuff or not.



How to thread a needle.  Someone will say they can't thread needles, and then you see them hold the needle in front of them, squint, and try to push the thread into the eye.  Yeah.  That doesn't work.  It especially doesn't work if you wet the thread.  Here's a hint I've never seen anywhere before, but it always works.  

First, make sure the end is cut super bluntly, no trailing fuzz.  Now note the way the thread is twisted.  Put the end of the thread between the sides of your thumb and index finger, and roll it slightly, a tiny bit, in the direction that will tighten the twist.  Then pull the thread down until you can just barely see the tip between the thumb and finger.  Take the needle and slip the eye over the tip of the thread, holding the thread tightly and pushing the needle down between the thumb and finger.  Roll the thumb and finger a tiny bit up, so it's past the needle, but still gripping the tip of the thread.  Pull the needle down more, and you should find it on the thread.

Might take a little practice, but once you get it, it works first time every time.

My eyes are so bad right now (I'm about three years overdue for a prescription upgrade) that I can't even manage the huge eye on the sewing machine needle any more.  So I just remove the needle, thread it using the above method, and then put it back in the machine. 


Want to have a little fun?  Look up the word "trumpery" in the dictionary.  It'll probably be definition #2.


Donald Trump has been talking about an ideological test of "American values" for visa applicants (he doesn't seen to understand that there are different types of visas, oh well), to verify that they agree with things like religious freedom, gender equality, gay rights, and so on.  

I'm frustrated because I can't find exactly what values Mr. Trump is interested in testing.  Most pundits seem to think it's stuff like the short list above, but that can't be it, because those are all "disgusting liberal" values.  If we can't allow people into this country who would fail a test like that, then most of the population of the southern states and almost all of his supporters should be deported.

It's been Republicans who have fought and legislated against all those "values" over the past few years.  So it's gotta be other stuff, but what?

Comments from Trump supporters on this video insist that it's fake, that the interviewed people must be actors.  Uh, no, I've talked with a few Trump folks, and this is exactly what you get.  From the article linked below, "...current Republican congressional Rep. Jody Hice said that a woman should run for political office only if her husband consents to it since husbands have “authority” over their wives. Before you dismiss Hice’s views as being an exception, he easily won his election in 2014 and was vocally supported by well known conservative Erick Erickson."

This article is interesting, but I can't figure out how to link only the pertinent article, so ya gotta look fast, because it might scroll off the page:


This is super cute. I guess I didn't realize tortoises could have so much personality and would stand up for their rights. "MY ball!!"


the queen said...

You learned the needle trick in Huckleberry Finn. And the radiation thing is a pain. They seem pretty blasé about something that sounds so nasty.

~~Silk said...

Nope, not from Huckleberry Finn. Chapter 11. "Bless you, child, when you set out to thread a needle don’t hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that’s the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t’other way."

No relationship whatsoever, neither the male nor the female way, to the way I do it. In fact, the "the way a woman most always does" is exactly the way I said mostly causes trouble.

KJL said...

Well, how frustrating - the Oncotype should have been ordered as soon as the pathology report was out so the medical oncologist would have it.

When you get your radiation oncology consult, ask about being treated prone. The affected breast hangs down and this completely avoids any exposure of radiation to the heart, lung or deeper structures. We do this regularly for larger breasted women.

If your skin is sensitive to sun exposure, we also use a prescription lotion twice a day called Biafine to reduce skin reaction. It's French and over there costs $8 a tube and is non-prescription. Here it's prescription and costs roughly $86 a tube but SO worth it for women with delicate skin.