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Complications, side effects, and drugs for my drugs.

There have not been too many days during this 5 year hell of fighting ovarian cancer that I have felt like I was dying: 1.The few days before my big surgery in Oxford, where the tumor seemed to be growing faster than a prizewinning watermelon in the August heat. 2. The week after aforementioned big surgery, when I came to terms with how Dr. T filleted me from stem to stern and left me with 54 staples. 3. The day I had a Vasovagal reaction in the chemo chair at the end of my 12th Taxol infusion. I later learned, even thou they seems life threatening they are actually not dangerous.

But unfortunately last week did feel like I was loosing this battle. I continue to have side effects and complication piling on. Gemzar targets the epithelial cells, (because most OC starts in the epithelial cells of the fallopian tubes) but like all chemo, it's impacts are indiscriminate, It is also effecting the lining of my lungs. As a result I have developed a cough, which is a common side effect. It is not an especially bad cough, but my diaphragm, damaged by surgery, is not happy. The cough is aggravating my diaphragm spasms. One spasm was like a charlie horse, 8 out of 10 on the pain scale. I could hardly move. I could hardly breath. I had terrible pains that hinted I was developing a hiatal hernia! Thankfully Baclofen, a prescription muscle relaxant, worked quickly to calm the muscle. In addition to the Baclofen I am now regularly taking a new prescription cough suppressant, Tessalon Perels. It works to deaden the cough response. I hope these two drugs will help keep my coughing and resulting spasms under control. After a few really bad days I perk back up, just in time to have pre chemo appt and to forget how badly I felt just days ago. So here I am again, getting my 23 chemo! Ovarian cancer is such a b*tch.

I chose not to share this second bit of disappointing news until it was confirmed by my Oncologist, which it was, at yesterdays Zoom appt. During my last A cycle infusion 3 weeks ago, I had a bit of a reaction to the Carbo. which get more common the more Carbo a patient has received. This is significant, it is not a Vasovegal reaction, but a true anaphylactic reaction, which is life threatening. They have pulled Carbo from my treatment plan and unless I am admitted to the ICU and "challenged" on very slow doses I will not be able to continue with this chemo agent. I am very disappointed by this development. Ofcourse I don't want to die of anaphylaxis, but without Carbo my change of getting back into remission are much less certain. Most chemos is given in couplets of two different drugs that work in different ways for a reason, it works better. If I did not have Cannabis in my back pocket I would be even more disheartened, but for now, no Carbo.

But enough of the bad news, there is good news. The second A/B chemo infusions of Gemzar reduced my Cancer Antigen marker from 750 to 320. A great result. We must celebrate the good news. I hope this is enough to get me back in remission.

It is not just my health that has me down, legalization seems to be slipping away. As always, submit a letter at and tell them to stop this ridiculous and inhumane Schedule 1 ban on Cannabis science!

Instead of yet another picture of me in the chemo chair, I will share a picture of my "Triangle" garden. This space was covered with asphalt until 6 years ago, the neighbors had been using it for decades as parking. Well, I'm not paying property taxes so someone else can have a parking space! But I will happily pay for bees to have flowers. I love ripping up asphalt, so I did. And it has never looked better......

In other whimsical gardening news, thanks to Marion and Chris I now have a winter wheat "farm". It's a running inside joke, but I look forward to watching it grow. Maybe I will harvest enough wheat to make a cookie! ha ha. Im working on getting the winter veggies cleaned up and the summer veggies planted. Next time I will post a pictures of our peppers, chard, tomatoes, cucumbers, celery, carrots, beets, squash and other veg.

And I also hope to have energy to update many of the resources on

With dozen of new visitors every week I feel obligated to keep things up to date and improve the collection of Cannabis and Cancer resources. I am putting it in writing so I will have to follow through and get it done! So be on the lookout for new videos, new PubMed papers, and more helpful links.


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