High Pressure

Follow up appointment day at the oncologist.  Ah, the joy of waiting for over an hour, as usual, for a 10 minute appointment.

The highlights….

  • Blood work looked great.  I’m just waiting for my tumor marker results; the doctor is supposed to call me tomorrow with those.
  • My blood pressure was high (systolic) for the second time in a row… both times following the start of Femara.  Prior to that, my systolic pressure typically ranged 100-110.  Coincidence, or something else?  Remember, Femara increases your risk of heart disease.  And so it begins…  The nurse said that the BP could be higher due to the joint pain, but the doctor didn’t seem to agree.
  • I asked about my seromas (the pockets of fluid from my mastectomy).  I had read, or had been told, that they go away after about a year.  Since I am fast approaching the one year mark, I thought I would ask, since they haven’t really gone away at all.  The doctor indicated that for some people, they never go away.  In a way, that’s good, but I was curious.
  • Calcium was still at 10 and she said not to worry.  10.5 is their high normal mark, so I am well within that.  Clearly no need for me to take a calcium supplement.
  • I asked about lymphodema and she brushed that off as nothing I need to worry about, not even if I fly.  I’ve read that it can still be an issue, but we will have to wait and see.  No plans to board an airplane any time soon.
  • The subject of colonoscopy came up again.  We are on, I believe, our 4th attempt to get prior records from my primary care physician.  Time to try another route… I sure wish I remembered where I went for my 2008 colonoscopy…
  • And lastly, the Femara…  I tried my best to broach the subject.  Any options?  No.  They are all the same.  Anything I can do for side effects?  I can take a blood pressure pill.  (Drugs to chase other drugs.)  I can take a sleeping pill.  (Yet more drugs.)  She talked about vitamin E for the hot flashes (not my primary complaint), and her best recommendation for my joint pain is one 200 mg Motrin each day.  Seriously???  She apparently didn’t read my pain scale today, or even listen to me talk about waking up in tears this morning from the pain.  A Motrin?  I think not.  Next steps for me?  Additional research on Femara versus no Femara, evaluation of the recommendation from the Swiss doc, and appointment with my naturalist.  For the record, I did NOT take my Femara this morning, but I probably will tomorrow.
  • The good news is that I don’t have to go back for 3 months!  Woo hoo!

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