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What's up with me as of 1/6/04


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Saw both the pulmo and the onc today. Lots of fun. :wink: Actually, I like and respect both of them very much, so I shouldn't complain.

Both say my pneumonia is still there, but past the acute stage. (I could have told them that.) Finally asked about whether I could fly in case I want to take a trip, and was told I'd need oxygen and the procedures were explained. Okay.

Pulmo okayed my plan to *add* a reduced dose of Welbutrin to my Celexa (anti-depressant) regimen, so I might smoke as little as possible. The last time I switched to Welbutrin alone, I got severely depressed, which pulmo agreed was not acceptable, either, compared to smoking. We've now agreed that the less I smoke the better, but she's not going to beat me up about it either. At least I have a doc who understands how debilitating depression can be.

Onc says latest CT scans show some progression in a hilar lymph node and the primary tumor in the right lung, but stability in other locations. I'm starting Gemzar and CPT-11 (Irinotecan) next week, and I'll let you all know how it goes. I haven't heard or read much about using these two compounds as a doublet, yet what I did see seemed pretty cutting-edge. I see my onc like that--very aggressive and on top of the research--so I'm comfortable with that.

I'm not happy with having Neupogen (sp?) shots every day for 5 days after, and am leaning toward learning to do it myself (or have my hubby do it). I'm doing everything in my power to lead as normal a life as possible, and spending *any* time nearly every day in the doc's office doesn't qualify.

Onc wasn't particularly forthcoming about what my increased pain is about, either, but we all suspect it's mostly about the pneumonia, since the LC progression doesn't seem sufficient to cause it. Now it's onto medium-dose Oxycontin at 12-hour intervals, with oxycodone for breakthrough pain. I'm extremely thankful to have an onc that takes pain management seriously, but I'm disappointed to need it now. I've felt and looked so well (according to friends and family). Just the need for it feels like a bad blow.

All I can to say to everyone is HOPE FOR A CURE. Live each day like it's your last, and enjoy every moment you have. It's a gift.

Love and prayers and warmest wishes to all,


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This is NOT a lecture but have you tried the Nicotine gum or the patch? I loved the gum so much that I got addicted to it but the doctor said fine go ahead and chew it, its not cigarettes. Also I was on Zyban and that helped me a lot toward quitting. I think all smokers and former smokers have an addictive personality and need all the help they can get. Hope you can cut out the cigarettes.

Bess B

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