Oh wait, I did. After months of intense and constant thirst, I finally saw an endocrinologist. He diagnosed me with diabetes insipidus, which is when the pituitary glad doesn’t send out the hormone signals to the kidneys to tell them to regulate hydration. He prescribed me a nasal spray that replaces the hormone, which has brought immediate relief. Of course the question was, why is the pituitary gland damaged?
I was hoping it was from the TDM-1, since the symptoms started at the same time. But, no such luck. Yesterday’s brain MRI shows a lesion in my pituitary gland that is causing the whole pituitary stalk to swell. Brain mets have always been my worst fear. But now the day has come and I guess I have to deal with it.
Chemo typically doesn’t cross the blood-brain barrier. So the treatment will probably be gamma knife radiation to the spot. I’ll find out all of those details after I meet with a radiation oncologist, which should be in the next few days. He or she will come up with a plan, I’m sure. And it’s only one little spot. But it still scares the crap out of me.
The rest of my mets are fairly stable so we are going to continue with the TDM-1. I don’t know if I’ll be able to stay on the trial now that I have a brain met, but I’m sure I’ll hear about that soon. I can still get TDM-1 even off trial because it’s been approved.
In all of the stories that I hear in groups or on message boards, brain mets are always the beginning of the end. I’m not even sure if I’m all that worried about the end coming sooner than I’d hoped. I’m more afraid of additional brain mets and what that might mean. Will I lost my sight? Be unable to walk? Lose memories? Have my personality change?
Right at this moment, I should focus only on the met I have and not worry about the ones that haven’t appeared yet. The pituitary gland met is small and can be radiated. Unfortunately, the pituitary gland regulates a lot of the body and radiation will likely damage it some, so I will have to take more medications in the future to fix those problems. It’s a lot to take in.
I’m so sick of all this. And please please please, I know you mean well but PLEASE don’t tell me that I’m a fighter and I’ll beat this. That whole bravery metaphor just burdens the patient. There’s no way for me to “beat this.” I’m doing the best I can to enjoy the time I have left, and the pressure to somehow “win” over cancer is maddening.