Welcome to WeeklyWilson.com, where author/film critic Connie (Corcoran) Wilson avoids totally losing her marbles in semi-retirement by writing about film (see the Chicago Film Festival reviews and SXSW), politics and books----her own books and those of other people. You'll also find her diverging frequently to share humorous (or not-so-humorous) anecdotes and concerns. Try it! You'll like it!

Tag: radiation

Day Number One of Radiation: 32 To Go

Today’s radiation was a non-event (which is a good thing)…so far.

However, as I was driving to the 12:45 appointment, at 12:28 p.m., the original radiologist who diagnosed me back on December 7th phoned me. Kudos to Dr. Gotswami for taking time out of her busy day to answer the musical question: “Should I try to make it through all 33 days of radiation?”

I could not speak with her at 12:28. I told her I’d be back home following the radiation. Could she please phone me at her convenience later? And she did. Her views on the subject of radiation confirmed mine (rather than Iowa City’s). I just hope that I am in the 52% who benefit, not the 48% who don’t.

Today’s radiation song was another Golden Oldie. (I can hum it, but I can’t tell you its name.)

The thing that concerns me is how tired I feel (and have felt since December 1st.) I can’t imagine that I could become even MORE fatigued through the process of radiation. I honestly feel as though I could lay down and go to sleep immediately. At my “wellness visit” of December 1st, I felt this way. The blood drawn at that time did not show any surprising or unusual results, but 6 days later I was diagnosed with cancer, so….

I must remember to call up and schedule my regular every-three-years colonoscopy. (The fun just never stops!) I’m thinking August for that gem, maybe. With a father and an aunt who died of colon cancer, one can’t be too cautious. As I remember, my father’s first symptom of his cancer was extreme fatigue, which first emerged in March. He died in October.

I am so impressed that Genesis’ Dr. Goswami was kind enough to phone me today and confirm for me the logic of my current actions. She did give Iowa City some cover (additional explanation).

So far, I am glad I followed through on my own instincts, but I realize (from reading) t

doesn’t happen at the outset.

I am still, overall, stunned by my late-in-the-game Iowa City second opinion. And grateful for the chance to thank Dr. Goswami (of Genesis) for the phrase that has been ringing in my mind since December 7, 2021: “You did everything right. You’re going to be fine.”

Don’t Hug Me: I’m Radioactive!

Some of you may have noticed that my blog has been offline since about May 4th.

Why?

No idea. Something about “cloud flares.” Extremely distressing. I hope GoDaddy gives me a week’s worth of freebie credit, because this has been quite upsetting. Thank you, Allison, for running interference on this and finally getting it straightened out. Something to do with “upgrades” gone wrong.

I begin radiation tomorrow, and it will run for 33 days, if I make it. I made a quick trip to Iowa City and met with specialists at their new Beast Cancer Center (open only 2 weeks) on Friday. Dr. Vickas spoke with my husband and me and, when I asked about the risks and benefits of radiation, said, “Actually, if you had had us operate here in Iowa City , we would not have radiated you at all.”

Big silence from the both of us.

Me:  “Why not??

Dr.:  “We don’t radiate anyone over 70. It has negligible benefit in terms of longevity.” (Welcome to being thrown upon the trash pile of life, I guess).

Me: “What about helping ward off a recurrence?”

Dr.: “Oh, yes. There is about a 52% better chance of no recurrence if you are radiated.”

Me: “Then why wouldn’t I have radiation for THAT?”

Dr. Vikas: “Well, we know how to treat that. You’d just come back and have another lumpectomy and go through all the rest of it.”

I don’t want to say that MALE Indian doctors don’t pay much attention to how women fare in the world, but male Indian doctors don’t pay much attention to women and how they fare in the world. I could go on and relate a true story about how my husband received a Vitamin D long-lasting pill in release form from our mutual male (former) Indian doctor, while it was never even mentioned to me that my Vitamin D was low—in fact,far lower than his. How do I know this? I had the good sense to have my blood work sent to my regular OB/GYN, Dr. Mihm, who called me FROM VACATION to tell me to go to a drugstore, buy some Vitamin D. and start taking a lot of it because my levels were so low.

So, tomorrow, it begins. Wish me luck!

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