I was diagnosed with Large B Cell Marginal Zone Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma in November 2013. The only symptoms i had was one evening after dinner i had extreme pain in my stomach. I was thinking it was bad gastro or gallstones. The next morning i went to my GP who ordered an ultrasound. The radiologist immediately looked concerned and told me there was something in my bowel and pancreas, she called the doctor who then sent me that day for a CT scan. My mind was just a mess. Results took 24 hours. Scan showed enlarged lymph node near pancreas and mass in the bowel. Booked in for colonoscopy 3 days later. Then waiting 3 days for results. When i seen my GP he was quite happy "It's not bowel cancer it's Lymphoma" I was referred to Peter Macallum hospital the following week where i had a Bone Marrow Biopsy, PET scan & Heart scan. It is also when i met my haematologist. All i can say is that she is the most wonderful doctor i have ever met. Her positivity eased my mind. We started with chemo ( 6 rounds of R-CHOP )after 3 rounds PET scan showed 90% reduction in disease ( Lymph nodes affected in abdomen, pelvis, chest & neck )No disease after 5 rounds. Then a Stem cell transplant & 17 rounds of radiation on my abdomen.
I find my biggest battle has been with fatigue. Treatment is complete for now and i am on 3 monthly checkups. As with everyone else i do worry about it returning but try to quickly knock it out my mind when those thoughts arise. My husband has been absolutely wonderful, the job of a carer is not an easy one. I also had to care for my dad who is a survivor of Lung & Brain cancer.
Cancer Council NSW would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which we live and work.We would also like to pay respect to elders past and present and extend that respect to all other Aboriginal people.