January 13, 2022

Hi everyone –

I hope 2022 is everything you hoped 2021 was going to be and more. For me, 2022 is off to a better start that expected. I’ll take it!

I had scans last week (bone scan and CT scan). I met with my oncologist earlier this week.

Short version: We stay the course. I’m staying on the same treatment for the moment.

While my blood work (tumor markers) jumped quite a bit in December and I had pain in my right ribs, my CT scan came back clear. My bone scan was largely not changed.

Also a win… my cancer center got a new CT/PET imaging machine and it’s sophisticated enough that I do NOT need to drink barium before the scan. I cannot even tell you how excited I was to learn this.

Overall, I’m still feeling decent. Last week I actually did 2 runs on the ski slopes at Winter Park! Yay me.

In the lift line at Winter Park Ski Resort with (L to R) Glen, Rob, Maddy, Paul and Evelyn.

Longer version:

The CT scan checks for cancer in the soft tissue (lungs, liver, abdomen). In October you may recall there were two items noted by the radiologists. One was enlarged lymph nodes on the left side. Those are gone/normal. We suspected it was a result of my COVID booster and we were probably right. The second was a nodule in my right lung (which are apparently common for everyone). There was no mention of it on the report. Yay!

The bone scan checks the status of the cancer in my bones. The cancer had migrated to my spine, pelvis/hips, shoulders and ribs. My imaging report was largely stable. They noticed “increased uptake” in my hip, where I already knew the cancer had traveled to.

What does this mean?

Unclear. It might mean progression. Might not. ….maddening right?

So, I was given the option of changing to the next line of treatment or staying the course. Glen says (and I agree) we are playing the long game so we stay the course.

The oncologist says this is a gray area. We could change treatments because maybe there is progression. The tumor markers make it look like progression (but tumor markers can be unreliable), but the scans don’t show any progression (but my kind of breast cancer – lobular breast cancer – doesn’t always show up on imaging well). It’s complicated.

I will have scans again in 2 months.

So, for now I continue on my first line of treatment (below). I am on cycle 33 of treatment (cycles are 28 days). This is my 30th calendar month of treatment. It’s hard for me to comprehend that my diagnosis was well over 2 years ago.

Life changes on a dime. We have no control over it. We saw this recently with the fires in Boulder and over 1,000 homes lost and families displaced and losing everything.

It’s hard not to take life for granted when things are going well. Believe me I know. I largely had 50 years of it. But really, we are only guaranteed today. Make the most of it.


First line of treatment. Current medications: Ibrance, Anastrazole, Lupron and quarterly Zometa infusions. CT and bone scans again in March.

1 Comment

  1. jillmoretti says:

    Thanks for this, Donna, we are here for you, if there’s anything we can do (we put Rocco up a few times when he went to Worchester PolyTech!). Think of you often, sending love and light!


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