Terri Gray's Update

Hello. Welcome to my Blog. I will use this form of communication to keep all my family, friends and others who are interested in my life experiences living with cancer up to date. I have been battling inflammatory breast cancer since May 2003. Every day I pray "May I be a blessing to you in each word I write today!" Please subscribe to my Blog by entering your email address in the subscribe box located in the right column below my book.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Hope Abounds

Dearest family and friends,

I cannot tell you how very blessed I was by your outpouring of responses upon receipt of my request for prayer early this morning. I slept well last night after sending out my request. And now I have something awesome to share with you about my appointment.

But first, before we left for my appointment, we had the pleasure of having our dear friends, Linda, Cam and Johanna Jacobi arrive for a visit. They live in Yosemite National Park, and decided to make a visit to Lompoc! I hated leaving them for my appointment, but it gave me something to look forward to after returning home! They will be here for the weekend, so we'll have time to visit!

As we drove to Dr. Lossing's office, I felt the most calming sense of peace envelope me. I knew that no matter what I heard today, God was still in control, and that all would be well. Dave and I prayed before we left the car, and proceeded inside. Dr. Lossing came out into the waiting room and gave me a hug. He's such a caring doctor. He told me my Her2Neu test was negative, but that it was well worth the try.

Then, he left to go back into his office. Once I was taken back to see him, he took time to ask me how I felt I was doing, and wrote down all my symptoms. He told me that the Scripp's conference did produce a new drug that was of special interest to him for me. The drug is called Lapatinib, and he would be researching to see if I could receive this as part of the Phase II trial going on. He hopes that there is a hospital nearby for me to participate in this trial, or that they'll authorize him to give me the drug.

In the mean time, my liver function tests are overall, very good. The part of the function test that would prohibit me from taking chemo right now (billirubin) is within normal limits. There is only one function, the alkaline phosphate, that is elevated to 1000. Dr. Lossing said that is because the tumor is growing. At any rate, it has been decided that on Wednesday, I will resume chemo therapy on chemo drug number 17, Doxil. I will have some special instructions to follow for the first week while on this drug, like showering in a lukewarm shower and eating food at room temperature, to prevent hand/foot syndrome, along with taking Vitamin B-6 100 mg. tablets in large doses. This drug is administered once every 4 weeks, so that will be a nice reprieve from the weekly chemo.

The unfortunate news is that the chemoembolization was not successful. The inside of the tumor may have been affected, but the peripheral (outside) edges of the tumor continue to grow, and thus, are causing the pain I'm in. I will continue to need to wear my dilauded pain pump, until such time that the Doxil shrinks the tumor, and the pain subsides.

As I look at what all this means, I can only say that my hope is restored. I have options and a plan. And one of my favorite scriptures says, "For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper and not to harm, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

Thank you for your prayers, e-mails, phone calls and support. I am so incredibly grateful that my only option wasn't hospice and a sad look. Thank you Lord.



May I be a blessing to you in each word I write today.
The past is history, the future is a mystery, but the present is a gift! Enjoy today.