What started as IDC (Infiltrating Ductal Carcinoma) in 2011, then turned into CHF (Congestive Heart Failure) in 2013, probably partially caused by chemotherapy along with a genetic pre-disposition. Here we are now in March 2016 and I am newly diagnosed with Stage IV breast cancer in the left breast and liver (LMBC - liver metastasized breast cancer).

So the focus has shifted yet again, BUT... I continue to THANK YOU for your prayers, love & support. I receive them with open & loving arms. My wish is that I will gain strength from you, will provide helpful information and strength to others & will help to strip away the fears we each experience.

I am strong. I am loved. I am healthy. I WILL SURVIVE!

Have you or your loved one had their annual mammogram? PLEASE, don't put it off. Speaking from experience, I highly recommend monthly self exam as well. And if you are now cancer free of breast cancer, do everything you can to insist that your doctors follow up with an occasional PET Scan and labs for tumor markers.

Contents may be uplifting, sad, funny, scary, downright depressing ~ THAT IS CANCER .... at it's best, at its worst.

PLEASE ~ Feel free to share this blog with anyone who is interested to learn about my journey. While I welcome their support, I hope that by sharing this experience freely to the universe I may help to support others by breaking down some of the barriers and fear associated with breast cancer and the treatment.


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Synchronized Hair Follicles

When people comment on how fast my hair is growing, and how cute it looks short (???), I usually respond with something about how I'm getting all this facial and arm hair, which seems to be much more than pre-chemotherapy. It used to be that I had peach fuzz on my head. Now it seems I have it around my jaw bone and all over my arms. Mind you, I'm pleased with the lush eyebrows and lashes coming back in. And even more pleased they still have a lot of dark brown color in them. The hair on the head, on the other hand, has loads of grey in it, but still some brown too. Honest, I'm not complaining -- just stating facts.

Well, my dear friend Kate, who once worked for Amgen and knows all about Neulasta (drug used right after chemo to bring blood count back to normal range) and other such things, helped explain it all to me.

You see, my hair follicles have synchronized. Normally our hair follicles cycle, or randomly grow at all sorts of different times. Some hairs are short, some long, some have just fallen out and have not yet pushed out a new hair. Often times this is associated with seasons, as we see with our pets. So we never really have a "full" head of hair all at one time. A chemo patient, receiving certain chemo drugs which cause hair loss, on the other hand, has lost every hair on their body. When the hair begins to grow back several weeks after the last chemo infusion, all their hair follicles are synchronized to grow at the same time. Thank goodness for this as the head and eyes look much better with that very short hair coming in all at once instead of a hair here and a hair there. 

Apparently, this is a similar phenomenon to when you wax hair. So for you ladies considering this on someplace like your legs, remember that then your follicles will be synchronized too and you will have very hairy legs when it starts to grow back in.

So now we have solved the mystery of the peach fuzz and synchronized hair follicles. Let's then get on with other important issues of the day, like fixing the economy of the USA. Good luck on that one.  :-)

Debbie... aka the cancer warrior; AND Survivor 


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