Scan: Everything looking goodPosted: May 11, 2011
I waited a few days to update because I wanted to hear from my endo. It’s all been a little confusing, but I think I’ve got it now. The bottom line is everything is still going as well as could be expected, even though I expected a little more.
See, I didnt know what to expect, which is partly my doctor’s fault and partly my fault for assuming things instead of asking.
Here’s what happened. Two days ago I went back to the hospital for my WBS (whole body scan). I had assumed the purpose of that was to see if the RAI had worked. I had assumed that if the RAI zapped all the remaining thyroid tissue (and therefore thyroid cancer) that I’d get a big thumbs up and they say: “You’re cured!” (Maybe not “cured” but at least “We can’t see any more to treat. So now we’ll just monitor you indefinitely.”)
Apparently it doesn’t work that way. Apparently the purpose of this scan was not to judge the success of the RAI, but to give a much clearer picture of whether the cancer had spread. The good news is, it didn’t. I thought my pre-RAI scan showed that sufficiently, but I guess that one was just to find out how much thyroid tissue was left from the surgery so they knew the dose of RAI to give me.
See, I’m figuring this out as I go, but now you’ll know in advance.
So what’s next? I haven’t actually talked to my endo yet (he just left a message that “everything looks good”) but what I’ve gathered is that the RAI keeps working inside of me for months and months, even though I won’t be outwardly radioactive any more. I believe I’ll have another scan in nine months to a year, and that is when I’ll find out, for certain, if the cancer is gone. I also believe that blood tests between now and then should provide hints.
In the meantime, my quarantine is essentially done. I still have two more nights of sleeping alone and not being able to be within six feet of my kids, but I’m not really restricting myself to the guest room any more. When the kids are at school I move freely around the house. I’m just careful to still use my bathroom and to wash all my dishes immediately after using them.
I’m feeling fine. I had about 2-3 days of mild nausea, but now that’s gone. The funny taste in my mouth is gone too.
I’m going to work tomorrow. (First day with a new job, actually.) Although I’ll still be on my last day within the window of some restrictions, none of them affect a standard office situation. I won’t be snuggling or swapping saliva with anyone at the office, so it’ll be OK.