Today I went into MSTI (Mountain States Tumor Institute) but instead of visiting the lovely chemotherapy lounge I got to go into the basement floor, the Radiation Oncology Floor! I met with my new doctor and got a little bit of insight on my current prognosis, my future treatment, and the expected side effects of radiation.
I learned that my entire neck and the center of my chest including where my esophagus is will be getting treated with some low dose radiation. This consists of me getting myself down there every day for about 20-25 treatments, or about 4 or 5 weeks!
- Sore Throat (due to radiation to my neck, told to avoid spicy foods)
- Reddening of the Throat and Chest (Blue Collar Comedy Tour Anyone?)
- Fatigue (could make riding bike a hassle)
- Weight Loss (not complaining about this one)
- Future Chance of Cancer (20 – 30 years later, guess I’ll wait and see)
If treatment dosage is any indicator of level of side-effects, mine should be minimal. But I will be taking it one day at a time, so wish me luck!!! I found this picture online, my radiation will look something like this…
Looks like some Star Trek shit to me… Next week is my next appointment, they are calling it a Treatment Planning/Simulation. According to the doctor, this consists of an application of a few permanent tattoos to my chest (should be the size of a small dot on my sides and center of chest) and a three-dimensional CT scan that will allow the Medical Physicists to determine the best plan of attack! Then it begins!