can tell you my whole story, but long story short is that I ended up going to Dana Farber in Boston for treatment. They shrunk my tumor prior to any typical treatments just by having me take a pill once daily, it was hormone based. I had technically 3 areas with tumors that could be felt by self examination. One was non-cancerous, but the others were cancerous. They all shrunk during the months that I took this pill, to the point that you almost couldn't detect them anymore. I had surgery, followed by the regular course of chemo, 8 treatments I believe, then 36 radiation treatments followed that. Lost my hair, but loved being bald, lol! I am still on the hormone pill, and will be for at least 5 years. They said some muscle aches may come from it, so I stopped taking it for a few weeks on their advice when I called about hand and wrist pain, but had no change. I'm not sure what I have yet, whether it's an arthritis or what, but I can't make fists with either hand, they will not fully close without coaxing and assistance from the other hand. And my wrist has been in a brace for 3 weeks and there's been no change to that, if my hand is lying flat on a desk, I can't lift it up without severe pain, sideways movement sometimes is affected too. I go back this week to the ortho, and next week to Boston, so hopefully I'll get some answers soon.
You're welcome to ask me any questions, I realize I skimmed lightly above, but didn't want to get too detailed. All I can say is to read your health insurance benefits and doing it online is easiest, IMO. That's how I found out about being treated in Boston. I had a lousy experience with the surgeon who was recommended to me and wanted a 2nd opinion. In seeing if that would be covered, I found that my insurance would 100% cover everything if I was treated at a 'Center of Excellence'...and when I say everything, it's everything. No copayments, mileage reimbursement, meal reimbursement and even hotel reimbursement. I'm sure there are some who abuse this, but we live around 2 hours away so we grabbed a sandwich and basically got out of town, we're not city folk...and only stayed over when I had my surgery. There were some hairy moments driving over in snow, ice, etc. but we did it! Can't say enough good things about Dana Farber either...wonderful folks.