Day 40: Never give up (Wednesday 7 December)

I awoke this morning to very confronting news that my friend with bowel cancer has been admitted to hospice. This is the thought that has been central in my mind all day. Life is not fair. It’s just not. I hate you cancer!!!

It is hard to believe that I don’t feel too bad for the second day in a row. Not ‘good,’ or anything, just not too bad. I’d love to think that I’m turning a corner but I think that kind of wild thinking is just a touch too optimistic! Nonetheless, today there’s been no pain, no tears, no particular weakness, no over-reaction to SPDT or HiFU – yay!

Today I had SPDT, Vit C, B6, HiFU (11th session), KLT (only one bottle instead of the usual two) then the final instalment of DCT (4 bottles). It’s good to get all this treatment out of the way but it did put a spanner in the works for our dinner plans with the Queenslanders. After HiFU at 430pm it was about time to go home, then I got the surprise bottle of KLT which I was assured I wasn’t having today. Then out of the blue I was told about the four bottles of DCT that were coming my way. I shouted. It was polite, friendly, shouting – but it was still shouting. I think the literal interpretation of the response from the Chinese was “tough titties.” So it is 9pm and I am still here at the hospital, trapped like a prisoner!!! Thank goodness Brad went to the food hall and got some takeaway for our dinner.

Mum was on Jaye-sitting duty today while Brad stayed in the hotel and worked. Well, he did as much work as he could given that the hotel’s Internet was down (not that it’s proven to be very reliable at the best of times).

We had a good old chat today with our new Queensland friend and shared some stories about ours and their cancer treatment experiences in Australia and it was scary just how similar our stories are. Honestly, the Australian cancer treatment profession has a lot of answering to do. So does the Federal government (past and present). It is just NOT GOOD ENOUGH that cancer patients are left to rot and die in Australia if surgery, chemo and radio can’t fix them. We are supposed to be an advanced, modern economy and democracy with all the privileges of advanced healthcare yet we are denied a range of relatively-basic medical options. Time for us all to be asking WHY?!

I have had a bit of a look online to see if I could replicate any of my Chinese treatment in Australia. Nup. At first blush it seems like there’s only a couple of mini-HiFU machines in Oz that only do prostate treatment by probe, DCT is only very selectively available to patients with some blood-borne cancers, KLT is not approved for import and use as far as I can tell, many medical oncologists poo-poo high dose Vitamin C injections and only a few clinics provide it and there are no SPDT or PDT machines working in Australia (there was one, but it closed down and a new PDT trial is due to start in Melbourne soon).

What else today? Nothing, really. Been stuck in hospital for nearly 12 hours now and waiting to go home. We want to have a cup of Milo and watch some Mad Men!


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