wigs to wishes.org.uk

The “Dawn Hughes Wigs to Wishes Fund” has been set up to enable me to receive further treatment at an Oncology Clinic in Germany where they have had a high success rate in stopping the spread of Cancer in patients and giving them the best possible chance of remission. The Berkshire Cancer Centre have informed me that there is little chance of my Cancer going into remission with the treatment available in this country.

Thanks for taking the time to visit my website. I'd like to tell you a little bit about myself. I'm a wife and mother of 3 young children, Matthew 13, Ellie 10 and Freddie 6. I was first diagnosed with Breast Cancer in 2001 at the age of 36. Following Chemotherapy and Radiotherapy, I was in remission until a chance MRI scan in Feb 2005 for an unrelated problem, detected that the Cancer had returned. I was then diagnosed with Secondary Breast Cancer. The likely prognosis given in February was 18 months to 5 years. I then had to undergo aggressive Chemotherapy, but following the results of a recent bone scan, it was found that the Cancer is still spreading. The treatment in Germany will cost thousands of pounds and for most people like myself, the opportunity for this is a dream. Many of my Family and Friends want to make this dream a reality and are making tremendous fund raising efforts, because without them, I would not be able to seek the treatment that I so obviously need and which is not being offered in this country.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Charity Disco Night

Another successful, enjoyable night was had by all at the Charity Disco held at the Post Office Club in Richfield Avenue.

We had lots of fantastic raffle prizes donated by so many generous people including:

£200 M&S Hamper - Donated by BBC Monitoring TS&D dept
£100 - M&S Vouchers donated byGeorge Smith, GKS Motors, Binfield Heath
2 x £25 John Lewis Vouchers - Donated by Wendy Hines following a car boot sale in the summer
£25 Peking Palace meal voucher - Donated by Peking Palace
£25 HMV Voucher - donated by Conisboro Garden Services, Caversham
12 Bottles of Wine - Donated by Phillipa Taylor
1 months Gym Subscription - Helen Field
4 Showcase Cinema Tickets - Donated by Phillipa Taylor
Picnic Basket - Donated by Wendy Hines
Bottle of Port - Donated by Waitrose, Caversham
Bottle of Barcardi - Donated by Angie Larkcom
Bottle of Vodka - Donated by Catering Dept at BBC Monitoring
George Foreman Grill - Donated by Budgens Emmer Green
Box of 5 bottles of Sparkling Wine - Dawn Hughes
Crystal Wine Glasses - Donated by Clare
Wine Glasses - Donated by Clare
Wedgewood Candle Holder - Donated by Clare
Garden Hose - Donated by Patricia Blackford
Two bottles of wine and hair straightners - Donated by Caroline Downs

Well done Tanya for organising the Disco Bus Stop, this raised £150 excluding the 1st prize of £75, 2nd prize of £50 and 3rd prize of £25. By sheer fluke Tanya's number was drawn 1st and I would just like to thank her for donating her 1st prize money to the Wigs to Wishes fund.

I would also like to thank Academy Windows for their donation of £50 to the Wigs to Wishes fund and also two separate donations of £100. Thanks guys (you know who you are).

In total we raised £2,534. Absolutely brilliant.

I would like to thank everyone who attended and made it such an enjoyable evening, it was really great to catch up with old friends who I've not seen in such a long time and it's really funny to find that people were also meeting up with long lost friends who didn't know each of them knew me. Small world!!

I'd really like to thank the Post Office Club for the club hire and for being so helpful on the night, Jim and Richard for the disco and last and certainly by no means least Wendy Hines for her tireless fund raising efforts. Without Wendy, a lot of these fund raising events just wouldn't happen and without the generosity of so many people I just wouldn't be receiving this advanced treatment that really is making a huge difference.

Monday, October 20, 2008

CT Scan results - Good news

Good news today. Saw Dr Hahnewald and she was pleased to report that there was nothing to be seen on the scan results. The lungs are clear and the chest also. The radiologist who studies the scans mentioned that there is scar tissue on the liver (obviously from the liver ablation in August) and it is possible that one particular area is irritating my diaphragm and therefore making my chest area sore. On the other hand, it could be a chest infection of a virul infection. I am feeling a little better although had a bad nights sleep last night. There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason between good days and bad.

She was really happy with the result and said that the news couldn't be any better. Even though we know that the cancer is still in the spine and left hip this is not going to kill me. We need to control the cancer and keep it out of the soft tissue areas (lungs, liver etc).

I'm still suffering with a painful back, particularly in the lower back. Dr Hahnewald said that I could have more radiotherapy to this area but we've decided to wait for a week or two to see how my recovery goes and whether the back pain improves.

As the my chemo was postponed two weeks ago Dr Hahnewald has decided that we can restart it next week at my next clinic appointment.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

CT Scan

Had a line put in my port this afternoon ahead of the CT scan. I was hoping that they would use this to inject the contrast dye. Unfortunately this was not the case, apparently because the radiologists don't know the port and what it's capabilitities are they can't risk using it. They said that the contrast dye has to be injected at a really high speed. My port may not be big enough to cope with this and it could be damaged. So, two attempts later they managed to get a line in my right arm (which ordinarly they're not supposed to use because I've had a large portion of my lymph nodes removed).

Anyway, the CT scan went well and I will be getting the results on Monday.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Urgent CT scan needed!

Cancer clinic was running really behind today, my 9.30 appointment turned in to 11am. I had a good chat with the Registrar. She's now seen the x-ray results and says that there is something showing on my right lung/chest area. It is possibly a lung infection which can be treated by the antibiotics I'm already taking and anti-inflammatories such as diclofenec or Tramadol and paracetamol.

Dr Hahnewald has also decided that as they can't see exactly what it is on my chest area that I need an urgent CT scan so she gave me a card to take to the main x-ray dept to get an appointment. As they can't see what is on the chest area, Dr Hahnewald cannot rule out blood clots on the lungs and therefore has also prescribed a course of injections (Tinzaparin) just as a precaution. The injections have to be made into my stomach area.

She's also decided to postpone my chemo (xeloda) until the CT scan results are available.

Well, this is where the farce begins, firstly I had to go up to the chemo ward to handover my notes so that I was booked in and they could order my Avastin (this usually takes an hour to come up from the pharmacy). Whilst chatting to the chemo nurses they could see that I was in a lot of pain walking (bad back and chest) and looking through my notes they thought it should be an urgent scan that day (in view of the possible blood clots) and they thought I shouldn't be walking all the way over to the x-ray dept so they got a porter to take me in a wheel chair.

When I got to the x-ray dept they said it wasn't an urgent scan but an urgent appointment so I had to go up a floor. The guy making the appointments looked on the system and said he could give me 22nd October, I was a little confused and I said that it was an urgent appointment. He said yes, all urgent appointments have to be seen within 2 weeks and this appointment was exactly 2 weeks. Unbelievable! I went on to say that my Oncologist had already booked an appointment for me to see her next week to discuss the results. He had another look on his screen and said he could offer me a cancellation for Thurs 16th Oct at 6pm (slightly inconvenient due to childcare issues but beggars can't be choosers).

Then I had to go back to the cancer centre to change my appointment and get another prescription for the injections which I'd only had a weeks worth. Unfortunately the Oncologist had left by this point (well it was 12.30) so the clinic nurse said she would call me the following day.

What a nightmare, it was just as well that I'd organised childcare for Freddie after school. I was exhausted and by the time I got called in for my infusions I was ready to have a snooze.

This was one of the longest days I'd spent at the Berks for chemo infusions etc for quite a while.

I also got weighed earlier and I'm now down to 57kg (8st 13lb).

Monday, October 06, 2008

In so much pain from my chest and back

I've had such a bad day today that I rang up for an urgent appointment at the GP's today. My chest and back have been so painful I'm struggling to cope with it.

The GP was very understanding, he was hoping that the x-ray results would be available now but unfortunately not. In the absence of the x-ray results he decided to give me some anti-biotics to possibly deal with a chest infection and prescribed some Tramadol for the pain.