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Tori Tomalia is a two-time cancer survivor currently living with stage 4 non-small cell lung cancer since May of 2013. Her first cancer experience was childhood osteogenic sarcoma, for which she received chemotherapy and curative surgery, and had been cancer-free for over 20 years prior to the lung cancer diagnosis. Along with cancer, Tori juggles life as a mom of 3 small children, a wife, a theatre artist, writer and lung cancer awareness advocate.
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Adventures in Brain Metastases

A glimpse into stereotactic radiosurgery for lung cancer spread to the brain.
PUBLISHED: OCTOBER 30, 2015
Talk about this article with other patients, caregivers, and advocates in the Lung Cancer CURE discussion group.
At noon, they had me take a dose of dexamethasone, a steroid to reduce any swelling from the radiation to my brain. The treatment was scheduled for 1:30 p.m., so at 1:00, they had me take another Valium and norco. By the time they wheeled me back for treatment, the duo was kicking in and I actually slept through the whole process. I remember them clamping my headpiece into the machine, and asking a few times how I was doing, but the next thing I knew they said, "OK, we are all finished!"

They removed the headpiece and sent me on my way. By now, the Norco-nausea was pretty bad and I promptly threw up upon getting home. Yay, narcotics. I slept most of the afternoon and evening. The next day, I felt groggy and had a pretty intense headache, but I decided to go the Tylenol route (no more Norco for me!) and that actually helped take the edge off quite a bit. By Wednesday, I was feeling much more like my old self, just a bit tired, and I still have patches of my scalp that are numb, which is a bizarre sensation.

I will have a follow-up MRI in January. Radiation keeps working for many weeks, so they won't know until then how it went. Fingers crossed that this is just a little bump in the road and I can keep going along with my targeted med Xalkori. I continue to marvel at modern medicine!

Tori Tomalia is many things: a mom, a wife, a theatre artist, a mediocre cook, a Buffy fan, a stinky cheese aficionado. She is also, unfortunately, a repeat visitor to CancerLand. Stay tuned for her continued adventures.

     Facebook: facebook.com/lungcancerblogger

     Twitter: twitter.com/lil_lytnin

     Blog: "A Lil Lytnin' Strikes Lung Cancer" lil-lytnin.blogspot.com

Talk about this article with other patients, caregivers, and advocates in the Lung Cancer CURE discussion group.
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