It has been 4 weeks ago today that I had the stent put in my throat. As of today I am doing great and actually had Chipotle for lunch. Yah! Unfortunately the weeks leading to this week weren’t all that great. I am thankful to have them behind me.
I had the stent put in 4 weeks ago today which was exactly one day after my first dose of chemo – which was not a good idea. Unfortunately the stent did not initially go where they wanted it to and I spent a couple of days in the hospital on a heavy dose of morphine and anti nausea medication. Eventually the stent did work it’s way to the right place and I was sent home.
At home I had to deal with the side effects of the chemo and the stent. With the chemo it was a lot of nausea and fatigue. With the stent it was the sensation of something always being stuck in your throat and the gag reflexes that come with that. By the time I started to get over the side effects of both of those it was time to have another dose of chemo. Bah!
I had my second dose of chemo a week ago today. It was not as bad as the first dose but there was still some nausea, lack of appetite, and fatigue. As of this past weekend I started to feel better and yesterday and today have actually been quite good. I have a little bit of a metal taste in my mouth from time to time but the nausea is gone and so is the fatigue. I am starting to get my appetite back as well which is nice. Chipotle never tasted so good.
From here I still have 4 doses of chemo. My expectation is that I should be able to manage the side effects a little better then these two past times so it should not be as bad. I may get a little more fatigued overall but I am felling pretty good right now so I am not to concerned about that. I am also having my current stent taken out and having another put in. This is scheduled to happen next week.
I am honestly not looking forward to this because of what happened last time. It should go much better though because my esophagus is at 18mm now and it being narrow was the major reason I had issues last time. I will be happy if I don’t need to stay in the hospital .
The plan is that we will leave this new stent in for another 5-6 weeks and then take it out. We will not put another one in. The hope is that my esophagus will have stay open on it’s own. If anything I might just need to have it dilated a time or two in the months afterward.
What About Cancer?
Well, all signs point to there still not being any. My narrow esophagus was a result of the surgery that I had, not cancer, so it looks like we are still in good shape. My Oncologist scheduled a CAT scan a day or two after my next dose of chemo just to make sure. This is not standard but with as quick as it came back last time we are just going to make sure things look good. Also, last time I was in there all the side effects were hitting me pretty hard and I was pretty down. I think he wants me to see the test results to keep me going. I am better now but I could always use more good news.
Overall I am doing great. It has almost been a year since I was diagnosed and I am actually in better shape today then back then. A year ago a could not go up the stairs in my house without getting winded and feeling like I was going to pass out. Yesterday I did 5 flights of stairs with ease. That right there makes me feel great.