Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Residual effects

It will soon be two months since my last dose of chemotherapy. I've had eyebrows for a week now. The hair on my scalp has progressed beyond peach fuzz to actually give a small amount of color (à la "five o'clock shadow"). It's enough I'm trying to get comfortable going out in public without a head covering. I'm not there yet - it still feels like I'm not completely dressed - but practice makes perfect.

My only chemo side effects left seem completely benign: big dark blotches in the center of my big toenails, and white lines on my fingernails. I think the fingernail issue is Muehrcke's lines. At least, I hope so, since I added a picture of my nails to that Wikipedia article.

I also have intermittent pain in my right shoulder and upper chest. This was my first symptom of the tumor, and it never completely resolved. My oncologist said it was probably caused by scar tissue. The latest flare-up has so far lasted almost two weeks, with several days being bad enough I need acetaminophen or ibuprofen to function.

Most days, though, I feel completely normal. Even the hot flashes are close to resolving: the intensity is significantly less, and I'm just have a couple every few days. Hopefully this feeling of normalcy will last a long time.

No comments: