To interferon or not to interferon, that is the question

Yesterday I had another doctors visit in Nicosia oncology center.  First I visited the radiotherapist doctor and showed her my burns.. she was shocked. Both her and the nurse felt for me bless them and couldn’t believe the state of me.  They quickly said I had to be monitored closely from now on till I am healed properly. I have to say that if you suffer from them that the only thing that works are melolin patches from UK. They don’t stick to your skin.  Unfortunately they don’t have them in Cyprus and what they gave me ripped my skin off today.

Then I had a meeting with the oncologist, he went on to tell me all about interferon and what I would need to do.   I would have to be admitted into hospital for the first week and have it intravenously, then for three weeks I would need to travel up by bus again every day and have it intravenously. So that would be September out of the window.  Then I would have to have injections 3 times a week for a whole year.  Side effects include, flu like symptoms fever, chills, headache, muscle ache, nausea, vomiting that can last about 1 to 12 hours after receiving a dose. So that would be a whole year out the window.  This is for a drug that does boost your immune system to help slow down the recurrence of melanoma but does not stop it from recurrence.

He said I am at high risk. Chances are it will come back. Because thats what statistics say.  So I said OK, I’ll do it.    Then I spent all night thinking about it and researching it and talking with family about whether or not I should do it.   I can boost my own immune system myself, by eating properly, treating my body better by joining an exercise class and not filling it  up with toxins.

So today I called the doctor and said I do not wish to have the interferon.

This means I get to have my life back. This means I can return to work in September and start being part of society again.

All I hope is that my melanoma doesn’t come back.  That I am able to keep it at bay by having a brand new lifestyle. Away from stress, bad things and bad people.  Fill my life with real friends, my family and my gorgeous son.

Here is the progress of my armpit, I have to say its getting much better and all my new pink skin is coming through quite nicely 🙂

Taken 17/08

Taken 19/08

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4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Zhanna P. Rader
    Aug 19, 2010 @ 15:29:49

    Thank you for your new report, Alethea. I hope the healing process will speed up. I hope you made the right decision about the Interferon. It is difficult to predict whether it would have helped you or not. I wish you a healthy life with all my heart!
    Zhanna

    Reply

  2. Randi
    Aug 19, 2010 @ 16:41:41

    I had interferon and I dont think I would have done it if I would have been given a choice. It is a brutal therapy and a lot of the effects are mental. It causes severe and I mean severe depression changing your brain chemicals. You definitely would not be able to work. I stopped the shots because I became suicidal on the drug and had to take a strong antidepressant to reverse the effects-yuck That being said it has been 5 years so maybe it worked or not. I just wait for it to come back. You can make your immune system stronger yourself and I think you have gone through hell with those burns. Here in the US they dont normally use radiation for melanoma so I am shocked. Hang in there you are doing great!! randi

    Reply

    • Mrs Ayres
      Aug 22, 2010 @ 17:11:41

      Thank you very much for sharing that with me Randi. I plan to not do it after all the stories I have read, non positive really. Hope you stay melanoma free 🙂

      Reply

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