beckyschoepp's Journey:

Survivor: Hodgkin Disease

Patient Info: Diagnosed: almost 25 years ago, Female, Age: 58, Stage II

  1. 1
    over 4 years ago
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    Health concern - itching

    Oh No

    I had been dealing with itching in my feet since 1981, generally only in the winter months. 1991 legs itched at night before I went sleep. I started to eliminate possible causes. Itching started to progress to more parts of body and bothered me through out the day. I saw allergy Dr's. No possible reason found. Finally went to Mayo Clinic, Rochester MN by the time I met with that Dr. I also had a lump in my neck.

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  2. 2
    over 4 years ago
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    Biopsy and Spleenectomy (spleen removed)

    Procedure or Surgery

    Biopsy revealed I had Hodgkin's Disease and then I had numerous other tests to determine the stage of my cancer. Spleen was removed and apparently because of the option of the PET scan to day they no longer feel the need to remove spleen as part of the diagonostic. Which is too bad for me I really could use the spleen, so it could be doing it's job to help keep me healthy. I was staged at a IIB I believe.

    Went as Expected: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Recovery: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Side Effects: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
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  3. 3
    over 4 years ago
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    External radiation

    Radiation

    Back in 1992 Radiation treatment was the way they treated my stage of HD. I had an excellent radialogist. I went thru I can't remember exactly 5 or 6 weeks of radiation - 1st section was from chin to center of gut and then after a couple of weeks break I got the 2nd round from the center of gut to ado, another 5 or 6 weeks. Last treatment was the day after Christmas (Boxing Day) I was vomiting sick. I had nothing to throw up. I was miserable form the 2nd week into treatments till well in January. I remember that time as a time of where sleep alluded me, I could not eat and all that was on TV was cooking shows. It took an hour and 15 min to travel to the hospital where I had the treatments. Friends from my church helped take me to my appointments.

    Painless Experience: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  4. 4
    over 4 years ago
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    throat and stomach irratted, voicebox damage, dry mouth, some hair loss

    Side Effects

    During the treatments: After a number of treatments my throat became so sore and raw that eating was very hard. They gave me a rinse that was supposed to numb the throat so that I supposed to be able to eat. But I found I could not get it to work and it make the food taste even worse. I remember eating very little. Soft, moist foods. When I started the lower gut radiation. I remember not eating at all and being hungry all the time and watching lots of cooking shows. Although back in those days I don't think there were really that many. I likely must have eaten something but I can't remember doing so. I do know that the last weeks of treatment I did lots of vomiting. the last week and the week after the last treatment were the worst. I had dry heaves and I had to have a drug to help me stop the vomiting. It was miserable. Side effects in the days after..... Initially I had a lot of trouble swallowing and eating, my voice was raw, I could not sing, my mouth was dry because the radiation damaged my front saliva glands, I did lose the hair at baseline section of my head Anywhere the radiation hit the hair was gone. I had very little burned skin issues. But I faithly put on the creme they told me to use. Despite the fact that it was smelly to me. I faithly cleaned my teeth throughout my treatment because I was very concerned about teeth damage. I had excellent teeth I wasn't about to loose them to radiation. The itching did go away. I had issues with my neck and arms - tingling and aches. I blacked out twice that left me with one side of my body completely numb. I started using Chircopractic care and over the years those issues were improved. By 5 years after. No problems with my teeth. My swallowing was basicly normal. Salvia glands not so bad. 10 years after. I am having issues of sleeping with mouth open and my mouth drys to parchness (not sure that is a term).. my gums are slowly receding. Dentists tells me to stop brushing so hard but I think that is not the whole problem. I still continue to go the Chiropractor and I started have massages. My neck and upper back have become a real concern. I started to carry my head in a forward position. the past years it has become a wearisome thing for me to hold my head. I often use a hand to hold it. I also have had episodes in which is seems that my esophagus stops the act of swallowing.

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  5. 5
    over 4 years ago
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    Cancer is back/Recurred

    Oh No

    August 1996 - After one of my 6 mo check up the Dr noticed a shadow on a x-ray that needed further investigation. Their was a another lump of Hodgkin's Disease cancer on my thymus. Small in the same area I had had my radiation. Looking back I realized that I was really tired but once again I am a mother of 4 and our life was hectic. It had also been an extremely stressful year. Our financial situation was so bad that we were not eating properly, I had stopped taking almost all of my supplements because they were expensive, I was constantly worried about how we were going to pay our bills. ( We did go thru bankruptcy later that year)

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  6. 6
    over 4 years ago
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    Longterm side effects

    Side Effects

    Blacked out twice (1993)- I figured it was due to neck bones being out alignment due to radiation treatment. I also had shoulder and upper back tingling sinsations. Chicropractic adjustments have served me well over the years. I had digestive issues and I took supplements to help with digestion. My energy was improved and thought my tiredness/fatigue was just because i was a mother of 4 children the youngest had just turned 2. I also changed my diet. 2000 and something I started to notice my neck muscles in front were taut, I felt like I need to hold by head up. There are/were many motions I struggle with. the kind of care being suggested for me by Chriopractors and therapist sounded reasonable but I knew something was missing. My neck just seems to be getting worse. Okay but that is a bit a head of the game in my scenario.

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  7. 7
    over 4 years ago
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    Biopsy

    Procedure or Surgery

    Biopsy confirmed it was hodgkin's once again.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
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  8. 8
    over 4 years ago
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    Implant chemotherapy port

    Procedure or Surgery

    I was glad to have a port because the thought of those dangerous killing chemo drugs coursing thru my veins was bad enough but the thought of any of it going outside the vein was absolutely something I had to force myself not to think about.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Agree
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