July 25, 2010
On Tuesday, Reed and I went in for the results of the scans. Basically, some things are slightly better some things are worse. Dr. Link is mostly concerned with 2 new spots in my liver. Some spots in my bones are worse too. I never really found out what areas are better because our conversation quickly turned to the next treatment Dr. Link wants me to try. The only problem is, he doesn’t have access to the drug.
Currently, there is a pharmaceutical study being done on a new non-chemo cancer treatment called a PARP Inhibitor. What this drug does is literally change the DNA strand of the cancer cell inhibiting it from repairing itself. All cells, whether good or bad, repair and replicate themselves. Cancer cells are cells that have been damaged somehow. They replicate themselves and cause harm. Because the PARP drug inhibits the repair process, the cancer cells cannot replicate causing them to eventually die out.
I don’t know how long this study has been going on but the positive results are amazing. It is believed that because the success rate has been so great (80%), the FDA will likely fast track it. We’ll see.
Anyway, because I was in my 30’s when I was first diagnosed and because the cancer I have is less common, more aggressive and doesn’t respond to chemo as well as other breast cancers (I have Triple Negative cancer), I am a prime candidate. However, because I’ve had more than three chemo regimens (I’ve had at least 4 regimens - each using 2-3 different chemos) that disqualifies me for the study. It appears, however, that I am being given special consideration so I am again in the waiting stage. Waiting for that phone call that will tell me what my next move is.
Half the patients in the study receive only the PARP drug. The other half receive the drug and a chemo. I’m really, really hoping I can be on the side that gets only the PARP drug!! Please God. But I’ll do whatever is best.
Right now, I feel really fortunate because I am totally at peace (thank you Jesus) and I have a medical team that will open every back door they need to get me into the study. I am enjoying my “time off” and will just wait for that call. The hospital has already called for my medical records so I’m thinking that is a good thing. God is again telling me to wait on Him and continues to confirm the promise for healing.
So, for now, I take my pain meds and enjoy the life I’ve been given. A life that includes crazy boys, a husband who loves me, protective friends, and amazing parents and siblings (and their families!). And for who knows how long, NO CHEMO SIDE EFFECTS!!! Woot, woot!!!