Category Archives: breast cancer

Mondor, No It’s Not A Lizard

‚ÄčI developed something called mondor syndrome. Nobody but my surgeon had ever heard of it. Basically, you develop a big varicose vein under the breast. It feels like a cord. It develops as the result of breast traumas, like surgery. It didn’t hurt, but was unpleasant to touch. My doctor told me to take an aspirin a day. Eventually it resolved or became small enough so I don’t notice it when I shower.

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Radiation

Negotiated a shortened series of radiation treatment down to 6 weeks. It’s really scary, but only lasts a few minutes. 

First they set you up by photographing your breast. Then they tattoo it where the cancer was, but you can’t see it. Then they stick you in the machine to get exact positioning. They make a plaster cast of your torso. That’ll come in later.

The treatment is loud. Or at least that’s how I remember it. Loud clicking noises. I watch the graph on the wall. You hold perfectly still. Your arms are up and over your head and you hold on to a pole.  

You can’t miss a day. I came down with the flu and out of concern for chemo patients, I asked to be given a masked and washed my hands like crazy. They didn’t want me to touch the sign-in pens.
They have bowls of greasy stuff in sample tubes to put on your breasts. Trust me, you’re going to need it. I also bought a bunch of other more creamy stuff. Slather it on. Your breast is going to fry. It’ll look like you tanned, but you can blister. I started to blister and crack in the crease under the breast just as it was ending. Two more weeks and it would have been really painful. I was given silver sulfate cream to help heal.

Be prepared to be tired. It’s a weird kind of tired. I can’t explained it. I felt tingling and my mouth single and tasted like steel. My tongue felt fizzy, like I was dipping it in soda or seltzer water.