After four months of waiting, today I finally had my appointment with the Thryroid cancer specialist…
As we hadn’t been to this hospital for years, we headed off early to ensure finding a carpark….and finding the right department!
As usual, my husband’s good luck at finding car parks continued…and he fluked one a minute after driving into the car park!
If I had been driving, well…we would still be looking!
With the car sorted, we headed off into the corridors of the Alfred Hospital, with my scrawled directions as dictated by the receptionist in hand.
And we had no problems…found the right building and the right department within 5 mins….with an hour to spare…
So the next task…find the cafeteria…best way to do that…follow the staff!
As we sat in the busy seating area, with patients, staff and visitors bustling about, I did begin to get somewhat nervous…what the specialist have in mind for me…what was going to happen next?
The clock finally ticked around, and it was time to take the very old lift….which did worry me just a bit…to the fifth floor.
I was asked to fill in the usual new patient form, and we took up residence in the tiny waiting room…only one other waiting, and it turned out he was waiting for his wife who had the appointment before me.
All very quiet and peaceful…very different from the Liver Transplant Clinic!
And there was plenty of light reading if you happened to get bored waiting…
My specialist was only a few minutes late, and was friendly and informative…we felt comfortable with him which is always a relief when you meet medical specialists for the first time…and we have been some quirky ones over the years!
He explained that I was “most likely” cured…that my cancer is not aggressive, is slow growing, and is not likely to appear anywhere else…all news I am very relived to hear!
However, because I had two tumours (both approx 10mm), this puts me in the “should we, shouldn’t we” in regards to further treatment.
I am already on a higher dose of Thyroxine to keep my levels at the best for preventing any further recurrences.
Plus I have had a total thyroidectomy…by an excellent surgeon…who hopefully did remove all the thyroid tissue.
So he was a little unsure whether I should have the next step which is radioactive iodine treatment…but, after a discussion about the pros and cons, decided on a blood test first (a thyroglobulin antibodies test) , to see if there are any “markers” that may indicate thyroid tissue still being there…. if any antibodies are detected, then it would be best to have the treatment…
We were very impressed to find that they have a nurse in the clinic that can do the blood tests straight away…no braving Pathology which if its anything like the one at the Austin, you could be there for hours!
The nurse was good…didn’t even feel it…and my vein behaved beautifully with the first try.
One good bit of information about the radioactive iodine is that if I was going to have it, I would only need a very low dose, which should have little or no side affects apart from being bored silly being stuck in an isolated room for 48 to 72 hours.
Depending on the results of the blood test…which he should know early next week…the decision will then be made one way or the other….any sign, then a couple of days in hospital for me…
I am lucky… if thats such a word to use with cancer…that the type I have is so easily treated, especially when caught so early…hopefully the surgery is the worst part of it, and I got through that with no issues.
I could already be “cured”…the cancer may well be gone…forever I hope….but there is a low risk of it coming back, especially without the radioactive iodine treatment.
I am very much in the camp of “do everything needed to make sure its never coming back” so I have no fear in stepping up to swallow the iodine capsule…guess I will get a couple of days to do nothing but read…and maybe do some blogging about the whole experience!
But now, we just have to wait another few days till the decision is made…will I become radioactive…or not!