30, Pregnant and Diagnosed with Breast Cancer

Welcome to the Oesch Family Blog. This blog will allow you to follow along as our family grows, we tackle my breast cancer and live life to its fullest.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Ongoing Treatment

I have been released from PT and OT. I had about 5 sessions of PT and about 7 sessions of OT. The range of motion in my arm significantly improved in just a short amount of time that they were able to release me with some easy at home exercises.

Radiation continues. I did have to take a bit of time off from radiation as my skin was raw. My skin had blistered and was beat red. It looked like a severe rope burn in my armpit. And with no fresh air and sunshine to help it heal, I suffered through a lot of pain for about 7 days. Plus, I have a rash that it is itchy it is unbearable at times.

I have resumed my radiation treatments but on a much smaller area of my breast. The doctor calls it the boost treatment. It is usually the last 5 treatments and is only focused on the small area of where the tumor was removed. However, in order to let my skin continue to heal, he decided it was best to move these 5 treatments up in the sequence. Next week I will go back to the original full breast radiation plan. I should have been done next week but now my last treatment is looking to be on the 30th!

Many people have asked me what radiation entails and what the machine looks like. The room is huge and imagine walking into a vault door at a bank. The vault door keeps all the radiation contained to the room. The machine is very high tech and contains an x-ray machine as well. The computer within manages all my films (they film everyday in order to ensure alignment) and the customized radiation program for me. It puts out the specific dose, maps the area, and moves the machine to the correct angle. When receiving the full radiation, I receive it from an angle above my body and from my backside...all angled right at the area where the tumor was. During this boost treatment, it angles from 3 areas...on top from the right, on top from the left and from the backside. Here is what the machine looks like:
The only difference from the picture above is that I have to lay with my arms up in order to achieve the correct positioning for radiation of breast cancer.

We are definitely getting closer and closer to the end of treatments. Once June rolls around I will be on chemo every three weeks and my daily hormone pill only! Chemo continues through January 2012. But this drug is the easiest to date and doesn't cause hair loss!

My left arm continues to ache a bit and is still slightly numb from the removal of my lymphnodes. The nerves are slowly but surely coming back. The compression sleeve is a lifesaver and helps tremendously.

Thanks for all the continued love and support.

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