Tracie Cone has always been a trailblazer. This award-winning journalist is the former California Newspaper Executive of the Year. She shares a Pulitzer Prize with fellow staff members at the Miami Herald for coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew and has twice been nominated individually. She has focused her writing on helping the underdog and empowering those without a strong voice of their own. Now she takes us on the fight of her life.
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Radiation Causes, Kills Cancer

I’m now up to the radiation portion of my grand slam cancer experience.

As my mastectomy wounds heal, I’m meeting with radiation oncologists to plot my course. My big dilemma? Where to have it done.

In a perfect world, I’d keep on at Stanford, where I love my cancer team and have received exemplary care.

But I’ll need 25 to 28 exposures five days a week. I cannot possibly spend six hours a day on the road making that trip from Fresno.

So the questions become: Can I get equally good care in Fresno? Will I be able to let go of my Stanford security blanket and believe it’s as good? If not can I find housing in or around Palo Alto for a period that includes Thanksgiving and the major Christian and Jewish holidays? Will I want to spend four nights a week away from Michelle, my biggest supporter? Shouldn’t I just suck it all up now that I’m at the end and go for it?

Ayeee. What to do?

I had a very productive meeting yesterday with Dr. Kathleen Horst at Stanford, the radiation oncologist who has been following my case since the beginning. She’s very smart and seems very caring. I would feel comfortable in her care.

This afternoon I meet with someone I am told also is smart and caring, a radiation oncologist here in Fresno. He did his residency at Stanford, so I get comfort in that. My oncologist knows him, so that’s good.

I’ll have to decide quickly. Radiation needs to start as soon as next week. I have so many questions I must answer in the meantime.

So much is at stake.

3 Responses to “Radiation Causes, Kills Cancer”

  • maria:

    Tracie, sounds like you’ll be in equally good hands if you stayed in fresno to receive the radiation treatment. In addition you’ll be close to home and no need to be separated from Michelle for that long of a period. But it is only my opinion and ultimately it is your choice. Can’t wait to see you guys! :-)

  • Cindy Frye:

    No advice here. But from watching Charlie and some others go through radiation it is not as grueling as the chemotherapy, other than the fatigue. However, it IS time consuming in that you have to have so many sessions. I do believe though that when we ask for answers, and believe that we will receive those answers – then they do come to us. So I have faith that you will receive the right answer for your situation and this will work out for you in the way it is supposed to. Believing for your survival, Tracie!

  • Freakin nice blog .. looking forward to further posts.

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