Saturday, January 31, 2009

my (very brief) thyroid cancer story

This is my less than ordinary journey through papillary thyroid cancer. Papillary thyroid cancer is known as “the best” type of thyroid cancer to have—basically because it’s a ‘garden’ variety cell and is well differentiated—meaning that it’s more like a normal cell then a poorly differentiated one. It’s also usually very slow growing. But not all papillary behaves so cordially. First of all, there are several subtypes of papillary and a few of those can be a bit more difficult to treat than just plain old papillary.

There is the possibility that papillary can, over time, change into a different, more aggressive cell type then what it started out as. Like any other cancer, there is the chance that it can spread—even though these numbers are pretty low, it does happen.So, without getting into every little detail of my experience like how many lymph nodes were affected (ok, so there were quite a few) what my thyroglobin level (which in my case is the cancer blood level) was and is now—it’s not a zero, YET—you can assume that it’s been an atypical experience.

I’m not sharing all the minutia, because besides select friends and family, who really wants to read a dictated report of your trip to Dr. X, Y & Z anyway? This is about the process of healing, snapshots of choosing to live a life above cancer and the cast of characters that support me along the way.

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