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Oct 18, 2017 · Diagnosed with sarcoma? Let's share in Cancer

When I had my 25 sessions of radiation, I would go to the gym and do a workout. It kept me from fatigue and my mind occupied. Just a thought to keep yourself strong for your upcoming surgery

Sep 15, 2017 · Diagnosed with sarcoma? Let's share in Cancer

I think Mayo Clinic is your best choice. They saved my life with their proton beam therapy and I did not have to have chemotherapy. My surgery was 8.5 hours with 3 hours of recovery. This was in June 2017. I will be 68 this December. I am going to the gym 3 days a week and hiking already. They were wonderful sarcoma doctors.

Jul 21, 2017 · Diagnosed with sarcoma? Let's share in Cancer

Get your doctor to recommend you to Mayo and you will get in faster. Plan on spending the day there because you will see all the doctors in the same day. They are all so advanced. Good luck. Let us all know what you do and decide.

Jul 21, 2017 · Diagnosed with sarcoma? Let's share in Cancer

You need to get into Mayo Clinic, in my opinion. They have non-ivasive radiation (proton beam therapy) and all of my doctors were sarcoma doctors. They saved my life. There is a good Mayo in New York – Rochester. Get in there ASAP before you do that other radiation that is invasive. Good luck, Wendy.

Jul 12, 2017 · Diagnosed with sarcoma? Let's share in Cancer

Thank you Colleen for responding. This is what helped me through this ordeal – people that cared or were curious. I feel I was very lucky to have had the doctors that I did.

Jul 9, 2017 · Diagnosed with sarcoma? Let's share in Cancer

Not sure if you are talking to me or not. But I had radiation for 5 weeks. They should be able to know how many weeks tp give you and the dosage. Good luck. Think positive and email friends. They can be a big help to keep your spirits up. I even wrote letters to my best friends and family telling them how much I appreciated them, etc. It was very therapeutic

Jul 9, 2017 · Diagnosed with sarcoma? Let's share in Cancer

Have you gone online and done some research? I would definitely let Mayo take care of you. They are the best.

Jul 9, 2017 · Diagnosed with sarcoma? Let's share in Cancer

In October of 2016, after a 3 week vacation hiking the National Parks, I discovered that my right leg was swollen with a rash and redness. I went to my primary doctor who suggested I go and see if I had a blood clot. No blood clots. I proceeded to see a podiatrist thinking I had broken or sprain my foot. ( I have a high tolerance for pain). I had an EKG and a vein mapping done. I had CT scan that showed a tumor in my pelvic area. I even had a small surgery from a DR.James. Cooper that was unnecessary. He had told me that he could open me up and find out what this tumor was. He misled us. He told me a needle biopsy would only be a 50/50 chance of showing what this tumor was. Come to find out – he was wrong. After the minor surgery, the doctor told me he could not see the tumor and the biopsy of one lymph node was negative. I decided to have an MRI and again the tumor showed up in the pelvic area.
I finally broke down and went to a cancer doctor who recommended a needle biopsy. This is when they determined that it was a pleormorphic sarcoma. I knew NOTHING about sarcomas and started researching. After going to another surgeon and a vascular surgeon, I decided that I did not want to create my ow team of doctors and that I needed radiation when I was having the tumor taken out. The only ones to do this type of radiation is Mayo. It so happened that this second surgeon could facilitate to get me to Mayo. We decided to take this route.

I feel very fortunate that I was admitted to Mayo very quickly. It was determined that the sarcoma had started in the soft tissue and was leiomyosarcoma, I had to redo my research. Because my tumor was under 5 cm. I had a good chance of making it. I immediately felt that everything was going to turn out good and I keep my spirits up the whole time. I shared my thoughts with a lot of my friends and family on Facebook, thus the constant positive feedback.

I took 5 weeks of radiation through Mayo Clinic. (25 treatments in two different areas of my hip). I can tell you that the making of the mask for my radiation was the worse part, but otherwise things were great. I went to the gym 3 times a week and rode the bike for about 40 minutes each time. It helped with the fatigue. I only felt tired one day and after the gym, it went away. I have a slight discolor in the area of radiation. Still I kept my spirits high.

I had my surgery on June 6, 2017. I am 67 1/2 years old. I was in surgery 8.5 hours and recovery for 3 hours. The radiation had killed 20% of the tumor. I had 8 doctors in the operating room with me. The surgeon was able to take the small feelers from an artery and pul it from my iliac vein. The tumor scooped out nicely with ‘clean’ margins. It had grown from 3.5 cm. to 5.2 cm in that small amount of time. I am glad that I did not know that. The vascular surgeon was able to take the tumor away from the main vein and repair the vein. No one knew what they would actually find once they opened me up. They thought I would have to have the main iliac vein cut and grafted from another vein, but I was fortunate that we didn’t have to have that done.

I was in the hospital for 5 days. I was on the road to recovery when 5 days later because I was NOT given blood thinners, I was back in the hospital for blood clots. I stayed in the hospital for another 3 days. The hospital stay was not that great. The fact that I ended up with blood clots put me back quite a bit for a fast recovery. I got rid of the pain pills in 10 days (much too long to be on them, but Oxycodene is very addicting. I started taking 500 mg of Tylenol for 4 or 5 days and stopped that. The recovery is slow because of these blood clots, but I am surviving.

On the 18th of this month I will be seeing my surgeon to get his feedback on how I am doing. I will have a CT scan of the pelvic and abdomen to see how the clots are doing. I will have an MRI to keep an eye on the sarcoma coming back. In fact, for the first year, I will have to have an MRI every 3 months. I do not have to take chemotherapy although I was offered it. It could work or it wouldn’t. I decided I wanted the quality of life back I had before this surgery and chemo would not offer that, plus it is not guaranteed that it will keep the sarcoma away. I figure I will take my chances and I feel confident that it will not come back. I will be monitored for 5 years. Once the clots are going, i will ask to get off of the blood thinners.

I feel the doctors at Mayo Clinic are the best and if I had not gone to them, I would not have the outcome that I do have. I believe in a lot of personal research to understand what you do have and the research behind it. A person has to think for themselves with the doctors help. It has been a month since my surgery and my leg is still swollen, and I still have the clots, but every day I see an improvement. I feel fortunate to be alive and I am so glad that I went to Mayo for this surgery. My suggestion is to stay positive at all times. It really does help.