Saturday, February 21, 2015

Breast Cancer - Dense breasts complicate diagnosis

In July, I referred to an article about dense breasts.  Now: 

More sensitive (and expensive) tests increasingly tapped for breast cancer screening     By Jaimy Lee  | December 10, 2014 

Friday, February 13, 2015

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Thursday, February 12, 2015

Tamoxifen feet-vein-artery Diary

This Tamoxifen foot pain-and-swelling thing involves more than walking!

Thursday. Last visit to Dr. Neville, for report on the vascular test. Asks me if I've ever been sent to a heart specialist.  (NO)  He says there's a vascular problem--not enough blood to the balls of my feet.  Everyone else is telling me to elevate my swollen feet and get the blood back to the heart.  So is it an arterial problem?  He says:  I want you to walk!

Corie puts a tiny metatarsal pad in my right shoe; gives me a discount card for NewBalance store.  Tells me to see manager.

Friday.  I go on my longest walk for ages, wearing my clogs.  Friday night 2 Gabapentin, but almost impossible to sleep.  Random pains in places I've never had pains.  Is this Tamoxifen or the unaccustomed exercise?  Took Tylenol in the middle of the night.

Saturday.  Woke  hungry and, of course, tired.  Was it partly hunger that kept me awake?

Sunday.   Swollen feet.  What's new?  Got my clogs on, went off to meet a friend and did some walking around the shopping center where I often go to Starbucks.

Monday.   NewBalance Manager will not be in, Walked around the neighborhood - more than a thousand steps, again wearing my old slide-sandal Clarks'.

Tuesday.  Manager doesn't have any walking shoe for me without very lumpy soles that will cause me to break my neck.  I agreed to e-mail him a link on some NewBalance walking shoes I saw online from LLBean.  Sent him the link.  Heavy laundry and kitchen chores.

Wednesday.  Usual foot pain and swelling.  Wore my ancient, sturdy Clark's sandals around the house.  Took a Tylenol, put on clogs, and walked through big department store shoe area - no luck.

Physical Therapy outpatient called me--I have a new assessment tomorrow!

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Breast Cancer Survivors-Tamoxifen, sore feet, and our veins. Tennis or ...

Rare craving for ice cream today after studying Medical statistics made easy.  I finally got a Snickers ice cream bar and a quiet moment on the sidewalk to wonder if my sweats had really shrunk (maybe) and why my waist is in danger of disappearing beside my ever-growing abdomen.

Then along comes Dr. Katz and his article that I actually read.

Inactivity kills more than obesity: Let’s go beyond the headline

 Fat around the waist was mentioned in the article.  Discussed, even.  So was the fact that more activity could mean less fat.  I guess taking heavy pots and bowls out of the dishwasher 2 or 3 times a day and climbing the library stairs isn't enough moderate exercise,

Then there's the foot-pain doctor:

My activity has been way down since my feet started hurting a lot.  The podiatrist, who knows about Tamoxifen, has found a potentially dangerous vascular problem.  I don't want to develop a clot.  His verdict:


Yes, that's also what the spine surgeon preaches.  Yes, I'm the one who urged you to read "Cancer Survivors Rest in Peace." *  (The one about exercise to live.) 

Bottom line:  Even though my feet are very swollen when I wake up (not unknown with Tamoxifen) and they're often much smaller in the afternoon or by supper, I have to find some really good shoes that allow me to walk more.  Much more.  Morning and afternoon.

Foot doctor's orthotics specialist gave me a tiny metatarsal pad for my right foot in my everyday shoes. We considered a bonfire for my rainy-day-puddle shoes) after he literally rolled one up in a ball.   Gave me a "prescription" for a discount on some tougher, healthy shoes.  He also showed me some healthy shoes that will not shout "old crip."  And ones without the cute lugs on the bottom that make me fall on my face.

So Monday it's serious shopping for tough, supporting, seriously padded rain-or-shine shoes.  Hopefully I'll be able to walk in the mornings, and then compensate with padded socks as the swelling goes down. And walk some more.  (Need instructions for woman with lumbar fusion changing socks and retying shoes in Starbucks bathroom.)  Anything to make those foot veins healthy.

In short, I might have improved my life expectancy if I'd pushed, fought, for the right podiatrist some time ago, instead of curling up with too many books.

I wish  you health. 

* from Sunrise Rounds