Monday, April 16, 2012

Red Shoe Problems

My oncologist, The Wizard, when he saw my red shoes:
"Red shoes? How appropriate."

Do you think he reads my blog?!

Now that I have accepted the fact that my oncologist knows he is The Wizard and my Sloan Kettering surgeon knows she is Glinda, I can tell you about my latest visit to MSK. My appointment was on Friday at 9 am, and after the vampires took 16 tubes of blood from me, I headed in to see The Wizard. He did not even get through the exam room door before he said "Hi. Your scans are fine." He remembered! Again! I hate making small talk until he tells me the results of my latest scans. I mean, what's the point? I am not listening to the small talk, I am analyzing his behavior. Is he being cheerful because he has something bad to tell me? Is he being quiet because he has something bad to tell me? When is he going to tell me?! Ever since I told him he could not keep me waiting to hear the results, he jumps right into our appointments. Then we laugh.

Unlike a normal clear scan visit, we actually had to chit chat because of the rash that is covering my body. He told me that he has not seen anything like it. He insisted I get seen by a dermatologist that day. The Wizard and the nurse Mary openly questioned if I should receive treatment, but he said that even if the rash is a side effect of Yervoy, it is a mild side effect. Sure, it is covering both legs almost entirely, both upper arms, my right wrist, my stomach, and my hips, the rash is not itching or causing me any pain. He said the Yervoy rash is typically tiny red dots. Mine is red/orange splotches with dots mixed in together. We said our "See you in 3 months" parting words and off to the 10th floor I went.

I saw Dr. Lee at MSK. I am actually using her real name because she is so sweet. I would refer any of my friends or family to her. Plus, I loved her Tony Burch shoes. I was first seen by the resident dermatologist. She examined me closely then Dr. Lee came in. She did not sugarcoat things. She flat out said she was not sure what the rash was. She had two ideas: Eczema brought on by the drug (I totally disagree because there's no texture AT ALL.) However, I understand that eczema is sometimes just a discoloration of skin. Her second--and the one that the resident believed too--was something that even though I asked her 3 different times what it was called, I do not have the slightest idea. It's something that is common in children, the blood vessels have become inflamed. Why does she believe the blood vessels are inflamed? The drug! She did a punch biopsy (on my tush!!!!) and I should be hearing the results in the next few days.

Oddly, since I received my treatment on Friday, the rash is starting to go away. Maybe my body was craving the drug/placebo? It seems odd, that is all.

Your thoughts and prayers got me through another scary experience. I say this often, but I don't think people know how much it means to me to have so many people on my side. It really does make this less scary.

I have some exciting news to share with you about the Skin Cancer Foundation. Must sleep first!



RBS said...

Chelsea it was such a delight to hear your good news. Maybe the red blotches are just war paint...Just finished week on on Zelboraf and it leaves red spotches too. especially where i'm also receiving radition. I see my Rad Onc today to determine if we should end the radiation prematurely. Nina and I see the medical oncologist at 1:30 on Wednesday, too soon for scans (i think() but i'm still nervous. I have a horrendous cough - it's in my lungs.. Sending prayers and good wishes to you. Ron

Nicholas Thornburg said...

I'm glad that your rash seems to be nothing important! Enjoy three months of no worries!

Katie Wilkes said...

I hope you figure out what's going on with that rash soon. In the meantime, if I were you, I would bedazzle the hell out of those red toms :)

Hiness58 said...

DANG I'm such a goob! I just finally figured out how to COMMENT!! TADA!!! I love your blog!! I wasn't diagnosed until I was 48, but I stupidly had started tanning in the tanning booth. Talk about NOT worth it! I would love to get some folks to walk in the AIM walk in Charlotte!! Keep me posted! Thanks!

Erin May said...

haha funny! I wore my red toms in one day and he commented on them also... I'll see him again in a month. Glad all was ok!