Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Thyroid Update

It was a year ago today that I had a complete thyroidectomy due to a cancerous tumor. So, what better day than to today give an update!

I have been seeing my Endocrinologist, Dr. Edwards, every 3 months since June 2009. Each time I have lab work done so he can check my TSH (thyroid something hormone, can't remember the name) and the tumor marker. Well, (I think I've blogged this before but I can't remember) apparently, my blood makes an antibody that conflicts with the antibody used for the test. This means Dr. Edward is not getting an accurate reading on the tumor marker, which means he does not have a clear idea of what the cancer may or may not be doing. He hasn't been extremely worried about this considering that Dr. Coffman (my surgeon, Dr. McDreamy) took out as much thyroid tissue as possible last year and I had a very successful body scan last summer. Since there hasn't been an accurate blood test, I have to have a body scan in June. This means that I must have another radioactive iodine pill, which means I must go on the low iodine diet once again.

The diet will begin on
June 7 -June 25 (yes, that's almost 3 weeks!): Begin low iodine diet
June 21 & 22 : go to Dr. Edwards' office for some injections (not sure about why, but he told me I had to)
June 23 : Go to hospital to take the radioactive iodine pill and leave immediately!
June 23 - 25. In isolation. Luckily, this is a much smaller does than last time (5 millicuries as apposed to 150) so my isolation time is only 3 days. Jaxon & Lucy will be in Tucson. Brian will be living in our guest room & his office
June 25: Body scan
June 26: Fly to Tucson to pick up Jaxon!
Let me remind you what the low iodine diet consists of:
- no dairy products- milk, yogurt, ice cream, chocolate
- Only egg whites, no egg yolks
- No iodized salt or sea salt
- No seafood
- No soy sauce
- Only 6 0z of meat everyday. Stay away from ground meat
- No foods that are packaged- no sliced bread, no cookies, no cereal, no crackers, no tortillas, etc.
Almost everything has to be homemade since I can control what goes into each meal. Thank goodness for my mom because she got VERY good at cooking meals & snacks that followed the guidelines. She even made me homemade bread every other day!!
While in isolation I may not be in the same room with any person or animals. This is why Jaxon & Lucy will be in Tucson.Brian will be home with me, but he will spend most of his time in this office or the guest room. Last year, when I was in the living room and he would want to come into the kitchen, he would yell, "Coming to the kitchen!" And would either go outside or upstairs until he was done.
During isolation I have to use disposable everything, plates, utensils, cups, napkins, etc. I also have to flush the toilet 3 times after using it and rinse the sink & bathtub thoroughly when finished. I also have to shower 2-3 times a day. This helps the radioactivity leave my body quickly.
Several hours post-op

The day after surgery

My scar today. You have to look closely! It is right in between the collar bones. It looks like a crease. Dr. McDreamy did an amazing job didn't he?!?

It's hard to believe that was a year ago! I feel great and the thyroid medication I take everyday is the perfect dose. I feel so very blessed for having survived thyroid cancer with not much fuss. I also am so happy Dr. Coffman was my surgeon, he did such a great job removing all of the cancer. Dr. Edwards has also been a Godsend. He is so patient, nice & caring. And I just feel fortunate all the way around!


Ami said...

Hooray for kicking Cancer's Butt! And no one should look that good right after having surgery! I know everything will go smoothly and you'll do great again! If your mom needs me to take Jaxon off her hands for a day here and there, let me know! He can come play in the playroom! :)

Sarah said...

i'm glad to hear that things are going well, but sad to hear that you'll have to do that crummy diet again! no fun! will you get to see henry before that? i sure hope so :)